A 19-year-old student from the Indian province of Kerala uses his drone to save the lives of four sea fishermen whose trawlers had capsized. Initially, rescue workers did not want to take the juvenile drone pilot with them on their search, but a local official convinced them to take the boy anyway.
Teenager with drone rescues four drowning sea fishermen from India
After a fishing boat off the coast of south-west India with four fishermen on board was reported missing earlier this week, 19-year-old mechanical engineering student Devang Subil approached the rescue team saying that he wanted to help them with his drone, a DJI Mavic Air 2, reports the Hindustan Times.
Initially, the rescue team did not want to hear about it and sent the boy away. But after a local official heard his plea, she approached the rescue team and persuaded them to let Subil ride the lifeboat.
Subil says: “When the lifeboat was 11 nautical miles from the coast, I launched my drone. At first the wind was causing problems, but after about twenty minutes I saw images appear on my phone of a man clinging to the side of a capsized boat.”
After the fisherman was sighted from the air in distress, he was soon rescued. A few hundred meters away, two of his colleagues were taken from the sea. It then took another hour to find the fourth fisherman. Subil: “The man was about to drown from exhaustion. He lost consciousness minutes after his rescue. ”
The four sailors have been admitted to a hospital in Thrissur. They spent nearly six hours in the sea, but one of them managed to send an SOS to shore. The government official who convinced the rescuers to join Subil is enthusiastic: “We thank the youngster whose timely intervention saved four lives. He showed us how new innovations can help rescue missions. I have already approached the government with the suggestion to honor him. ”
Drone to the rescue!
According to the local fishermen’s association, it is the first time that a drone has been used to rescue fishermen from the seas around South India. The association now plans to submit a proposal to the Ministry of Fisheries to increase the use of drones and train rescue workers to use them.
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Photo credit: Hindustan Times