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Data from phone found on riverbank leads to rescue of kayaker missing for days

Mark Miele was on a solo kayaking trip but did not return on the date expected and a bag containing his wallet and phone washed up on a US riverbank.

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The kayaker is rescued in Florida (Collier County Sheriff’s Office)

The kayaker is rescued in Florida (Collier County Sheriff’s Office)

The kayaker is rescued in Florida (Collier County Sheriff’s Office)

A kayaker who went missing during a solo trip in the Florida Everglades was found alive after his mobile phone washed up on a riverbank and authorities were able to recover data showing where he had been.

A helicopter crew then spotted Mark Miele and led a marine unit to his location, the Collier County Sheriff’s Office said.

The 67-year-old is being treated in hospital.

Mr Miele embarked on a solo kayaking trip in Everglades National Park on January 22 and was due back on January 29, officials said.

He never returned, but a bag containing his wallet and phone washed up on Sunday on the bank of the Lopez River.

National Park Service rangers found the belongings and asked the sheriff’s office to assist in a search.

Deputies downloaded data from Mr Miele’s phone on Sunday night, officials said.

His most recent location had been recorded on Friday, giving the sheriff’s aviation unit a place to target its search.

A helicopter crew eventually spotted Mr Miele floating in the water face up and wearing a life jacket several miles from where his belongings were found.

Boats soon reached the area and took Mr Miele to safety.

Officials did not say how or when Mr Miele lost his kayak.

PA Media