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Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Miracle at sea in Atlantic near Nigeria

This news, a few days old, from gCaptain by Joe Brock, just came to my attention:
WARRI, Nigeria, June 12 (Reuters) – After two days trapped in freezing cold water and breathing from an air bubble in an upturned tugboat under the ocean, Harrison Okene was sure he was going to die. Then a torch light pierced the darkness.
Ship’s cook Okene, 29, was on board the Jascon-4 tugboat when it capsized on May 26 due to heavy Atlantic ocean swells around 30 km (20 miles) off the coast of Nigeria, while stabilising an oil tanker filling up at a Chevron platform.
Of the 12 people on board, divers recovered 10 dead bodies while a remaining crew member has not been found.
It is an incredible story! Here's the punchline of the survival story:
Somehow Okene survived, breathing inside a four foot high bubble of air as it shrunk in the waters slowly rising from the ceiling of the tiny toilet and adjoining bedroom where he sought refuge, until two South African divers eventually rescued him.
with some further details:
At 4:50 a.m. on May 26, Okene says he was in the toilet when he realised the tugboat was beginning to turn over. As water rushed in and the Jascon-4 flipped, he forced open the metal door.
“As I was coming out of the toilet it was pitch black so we were trying to link our way out to the water tidal (exit hatch),” Okene told Reuters in his home town of Warri, a city in Nigeria’s oil-producing Niger Delta.
“Three guys were in front of me and suddenly water rushed in full force. I saw the first one, the second one, the third one just washed away. I knew these guys were dead.”
What he didn’t know was that he would spend the next two and a half days trapped under the sea praying he would be found.
Turning away from his only exit, Okene was swept along a narrow passageway by surging water into another toilet, this time adjoining a ship’s officers cabin, as the overturned boat crashed onto the ocean floor. To his amazement he was still breathing.
Read the whole article, it's fascinating!  And here's another gCaptain report by Bob Almeida entitled "Miracle at sea . . .":
As reported earlier this week, tragedy struck offshore Escravos, Nigeria on Sunday 26 May when theanchor handling tug Jacson 4 sankin heavy weather.  Divers recovered 10 bodies from the sunken ship and 1 is still missing.
Miraculously however, the ship’s cook, Mr. Okene Harrison, was found alive after spending roughly two days inside the sunken vessel at a depth of 30 meters.
Now how does one to expect a miracle to survive in a disaster?

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