Two illegal immigrants try to use surfboard to cross ocean
Two young illegal immigrants have been safely rescued after trying to paddle their way into Europe on a surboard.
The two teenagers risked their lives as they left the coast of north Africa to head for the Spanish mainland.
The journey is hazardous enough in boats and has led to numerous deaths by drowning because of the rough sea conditions and bad weather.
Spain’s maritime rescue service had already intercepted two inflatable boats with eleven men on board in the same stretch of water just off the island of Tarifa, the southernmost point of the Iberian Peninsula.
The second alert was sounded by fishermen who first spotted the two immigrants on the surfboard. They had no paddle, using only their hands, and were just wearing shorts with no tops.
At the time of the rescue, it was mid-afternoon with high temperatures but night would have brought much colder weather with the risk of dehydration and hypothermia.
“It had already been a complicated day when we also had to rescue these two immigrants trying to cross the ocean on a surfboard,” said a spokesman for the rescue ship, Alkaid.
Migrants are so desperate to reach Europe that they are trying all measures, including hiding inside jet skis whilst others pay people traffickers thousands of euros to make the trip by boat but are often set adrift.
The two youngsters were taken on board the rescue ship and taken to the port of Tarifa where they will be processed and eventually sent back home.