Diver swims 20 MILES through shark-infested seas to reach safety after being abandoned by boatman

Posted: 08/26/2011 in all marine news

Richard Shears –

A Japanese diving instructor managed to survive being abandoned by a boatman in shark-infested waters by swimming 20 miles to shore in 24 hours.

Hishashi Koze had been left for dead following a routine dive off Borneo’s Santubong peninsula with two other diving colleagues.

The three men had gone underwater for a third dive, only to be abandoned when boatmen on the surface lost sight of their air bubbles underwater and assumed they were in trouble.

Mr Koze, 39, was then left alone himself after trying to swim after the boat and losing sight of his two colleagues.

Exhausted, sunburned, dehydrated and emotional, Mr Koze managed to swim back to Malaysia’s Borneo island, where he told how the dive boat he was on had headed back to the shore after the boatman had decided there was no hope of finding him and his two companions alive.

But Mr Koze’s friends, Satoo Makoto, 40, and Ngu Teck Hua, 52, were soon picked up by a passing fishing boat.

Mr Koze, however, lost touch with his friends and did not see them being rescued – he did not even see the fishing boat that picked them up.

‘I kept thinking “I must survive – I must survive”,’ he told The Star newspaper of Malaysia.

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