OSAKA, Japan / The Mainichi Daily News / News / July 2, 2011
Ryoko Shimabukuro, 70, the captain of the Mitsu Maru, a fishing boat belonging to the Ie fisheries cooperative association in Okinawa Prefecture, was found in good condition after the 4.9-ton boat he was aboard was spotted about 70 kilometers south-southwest of Cape Muroto in Kochi Prefecture. The boat had gone missing in mid-June. Mainichi Photo
"I'd been worried I might not be found forever," Shimabukuro was quoted as telling coast guard officials, adding that his boat went adrift at sea after engine trouble. He was unable to use the radio aboard the vessel.
The boat was towed to Kochi Port at around 8:15 p.m. on June 30, from where Shimabukuro was taken to a hospital in the city of Kochi.
The Mitsu Maru, a fishing boat that drifted at sea for about 20 days before being spotted off Cape Muroto in Kochi Prefecture. (Photo: Kochi Coast Guard Office)
The fishing boat had left Ie Port in Okinawa Prefecture on June 8 to fish for squid and had been scheduled to return on June 18. However, the boat went missing after it was last seen by another boat about 150 kilometers east of Cape Hedo in Okinawa on the evening of June 10.
According to the hospital where Shimabukuro was admitted to, he was suffering from a mild degree of dehydration and pneumonia but was scheduled to leave the hospital on July 1.
Copyright 2011 The Mainichi Newspapers
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