14 Sep 2012

Kiribati drifter found after nearly four months at sea

5:04 pm on 14 September 2012

A Kiribati man who drifted in the central Pacific for three-and-a-half months was found earlier this week by a Marshall Islands fishing vessel.

The man, Toakai Teitoi from Kiribati, was reported to be healthy despite the lengthy ordeal.

But a man who was with him when they left Maiana Atoll in Kiribati on May the 28th died six weeks later.

A fisheries observer on the Marshalls Islands vessel, Ali Ezekiah, says when the crew brought the man on board the first thing he asked for was a cigarette.

The vessel iswas expected to arrive in Majuro later today.

The two Kiribati men reportedly left Kiribati on May the 28th, suffered engine trouble and were not seen or heard from until the 6 metre boat was spotted on September the 11th by the Marshall Islands purse seiner, northeast of Nauru.