21 May 2024

An Indonesian fisherman was safely rescued from the sea, off Thailand’s Phuket Island, after having been adrift without food in his small fishing boat for nine days.

The boat was spotted drifting south of Racha Noi islet, off the Muang district of Phuket, by the crew of a Thai trawler, Boonlarp 2, on Sunday evening. The trawler then took the fisherman aboard, gave him food and water and towed his boat to a fishing pier in Phuket.

Speaking through an interpreter, the unnamed Indonesian said that the engine of his boat broke down as he was fishing in Indonesian waters, leaving him unable to navigate the vessel and letting it be swept by winds and waves further away from the Indonesian shore.

He claimed that he had run out of food many days before he was rescued by the Thai trawler.

He was temporarily held at an immigration checkpoint, for COVID-19 screening, before being sent to the Vachira Phuket Hospital for treatment.  The Indonesian consular office was asked to arrange for the repatriation of the fisherman.