UK & World News

  • 7 January 2014, 14:05

Taiwan 'Miracle' Man Survives Two Days At Sea

A man who cannot swim survived drifting at sea for more than two days by clinging to a wooden coffin lid.

Tseng Lien-fa was catching baby eels on a beach off the east coast of Taiwan when he was swept away by an unexpectedly large wave.

According to reports, the 42-year-old managed to grab hold of a floating wooden coffin lid as he was taken away from the shore in Hualien county.

Mr Tseng told the United Daily News: "I managed to hold on as the first wave hit me on the chest, but I was overwhelmed by the second and bigger wave.

"On the lid, I was drifting and drifting ... during that period I hoped I could be picked up by any ships passing by."

Mr Tseng's fiancee, who is expecting a baby next month, raised the alarm when he did not return home on time. He had been fishing to make extra money.

The strong waves eventually carried him onto a beach in the southeastern county of Taitung, 46 miles away.

Coastguards tasked with searching for Tseng found him lying on the beach on Sunday.

Doctors said he was slightly dehydrated and had developed sores on his arms due to being in the seawater for so long.

Chen Tien-su, a doctor at Hualien Hospital, said: "Considering the fact that he had not taken in any food or water while drifting at sea for 60 hours and he remained conscious, all I could say about him was that this was a miracle."

Mr Tseng said he had now promised his fiancee he would stop the fishing trips.

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