A fisherman from Colombia survived two days adrift in the Pacific Ocean, after he latched himself to a foam icebox in order to keep himself afloat.
According to the Daily Mail, 47-year-old Solano Salazar set sail with a friend from Lopez, a town in the south of Colombia, on Friday. Two days later, strong winds caused the fisherman’s vessel to overturn more than 20 miles off the coast. Upon hitting the water, Salazar grabbed the nearest buoyant object he could find, a styrofoam cooler, and clung to it for an amazing 48 hours before a passing Colombian naval vessel rescued him from the water.
The Colombian Navy released dramatic footage of the rescue, capturing the exact moment that sailors spotted the beleaguered fisherman clinging to the cooler. The sailors were able to navigate their warship close to his position before a diver was dispatched into the water, pulling the fisherman to safety.
— ITV News (@itvnews) November 6, 2014
Rescue teams continue to search for the other fisherman who accompanied Salazar, though the man is still missing and presumed dead. Salazar was rushed to shore by the Colombian Navy and taken to a hospital, yet, despite his harrowing ordeal, he was found to be suffering no ill effects other than dehydration, according to the Guardian.
Captain Andres Mejia, commander of Colombia’s Pacific coast guard, elaborated on the fisherman’s astounding rescue.
“The person was rescued and taken to the Malaga hospital. He was given first aid. He was dehydrated and according to what he said, they left [port] on Friday from the Guapi area to fish with another person and they were turned over in bad weather. He drifted tied to a portable cooler,” he said.
— BBC Shorts (@BBCShorts) November 6, 2014
Surprisingly, Salazar isn’t the first castaway to recently be saved by a polystyrene container. As the Inquisitr previously reported, 43-year-old Raymundo Rodriguez Noyola was found off the coast of Mexico in September, set adrift after his boat was capsized in a storm. Much like the fisherman’s experience in Colombia, Noyola’s companions perished, while he survived after pulling himself into a styrofoam container. Noyola sustained himself with several birds and a turtle before he was eventually rescued.
“I am OK now because the navy rescued me,” Salazar noted. “I thought I was going to die. I didn’t think about anything else.”
The fisherman thanked the Colombian Navy for his rescue, admitting that he feels much better now that he is back on dry land.
[Image: Colombian Navy via the Daily Mail]