Men saved after writing ‘SOS’ in sand on deserted Pacific island

SOS sign on beach. SOS sign on beach.

Three men have been rescued from a small Pacific island after a giant SOS sign they wrote in the sand was spotted.

Officials said the trio had set off from Puluwat atoll in a boat on 30 July and they had intended to travel about 27 miles to Pulap atoll, but they sailed off course and ran out of fuel.

They had been missing in the Micronesia archipelago for nearly three days when their distress signal was spotted by rescue teams in Australian and US aircraft on the uninhabited Pikelot Island.

The Australian defence department said the men were found on Sunday – around 118 miles from where they had set out.

The Australian military ship Canberra was diverted to the area and joined forces with US teams from Guam after being asked to help in the search effort, according to Sky.

“I am proud of the response and professionalism of all on board as we fulfil our obligation to contribute to the safety of life at sea wherever we are in the world,” says Captain Terry Morrison, Canberra’s commanding officer.

All three men were said to be in good condition, with an Australian military helicopter able to land on the beach and give them food and water.

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This article was written and/or edited by the UK-based MIN team.

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