17 Sep 2012

Kiribati man has shark to thank after 105 days lost at sea

6:53 pm on 17 September 2012

A Kiribati man has a shark to thank after being lost at sea for a hundred and five days.

Forty one year old Toakai Teitoi watched his brother-in-law die during what was supposed to be a two hour sea journey back to his home island of Maiana from the Kiribati capital of Tarawa.

Mr Teitoi eventually managed to collect enough rainwater to survive and had fishing gear on board to keep himself fed.

Our correspondent in Marshall Islands, Giff Johnson, says Mr Teitoi failed to be picked up by the many fishing boats in the area until, while taking a rest, he was awoken by the scraping sound of a shark on the hull.

"He said it was maybe a six foot shark that was swimming around the boat and then the shark took off in a direction and he followed it and as he followed it with his eyes he looked up and there was the stern of a purse seiner with a bunch of crewmen with binoculars looking at him."

Giff Johnson says Mr Teitoi appeared well when he spoke to him after his ordeal.