Wednesday 22 November 2017

Fisherman feared lost at sea survived on tea and biscuits

TWO fishermen feared lost at sea have said they got through their two-day ordeal on a small flask of tea and a couple of biscuits.

James Reid (75) and his grandson David Irvine (35) returned to shore yesterday after their “miracle” discovery by another boat off the Aberdeenshire coast of Scotland.

The men had been due to return to Gourdon harbour on Tuesday morning on their vessel the Water Rail but they ran off course when their compass stopped working.

Thick fog then resulted in them getting “completely lost” and they were unable to contact anyone as Mr Irvine had forgotten to take his phone.


A large-scale search for the boat was called off on Wednesday night but the pair were spotted by a passing fishing vessel yesterday morning, 46 miles off the coast of north-east Scotland.

The crew of the Sylvia Bowers DS8reported picking them up safe and sound at about 8am.

A lifeboat later brought the men ashore to be reunited with their relieved families.

The pair, from Inverbervie, said they first realised they were in trouble after seven hours but never gave up hope of being rescued.

They passed the time “cursing one another”, according to Mr Reid.

He said: “We had a litre and half of water, a small flask of tea and two biscuits,that was it.”

He said it was “the best thing in the world” when the lifeboat arrived while

Mr Irvine said he felt “relief and shock”.

Their boat sunk while being towed back to shore.

When asked how long it will be before he is back out on the water, Mr Reid said:“It depends what my wife says.”

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