A Brazilian fisherman survived two days in the Atlantic Ocean from when he fell off his boat on Christmas Day but clung to a signal.
The 43-year-old David Soares was found on Tuesday following a rescue mission embarked upon by his fellow fisherman when his family raised an alarm, according to Reuters.
Soares was found desperately clinging to a buoy near the coast of Praia de Atafona, around 200 miles north of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
After being found, Soares recounted he swam four hours to reach the relative safety of the signal buoy around five miles from where the incident took place.
“For me, the first 10 minutes were the most difficult because I wanted to get to the boat at all costs. But it’s really an enormous weight of water, I couldn’t swim against it,” Soares said.
He added that he had to remove his shirt and trousers to stop them from weighing him down as he swam to safety.
“There was swell, wind…I decided to let the waters take me to use less strength and ‘walk’ faster,” he added. “It took me about four hours swimming to reach Porto do Açu, on the buoys.”
Soares’ family became disturbed for his safety when he did not return from his Christmas Day voyage and pleaded with the local fishing community to help search for him.
They later also contacted the Brazilian Navy for assistance.
It was not until two days later that one of the local fishermen discovered Soares clinging to the buoy and brought him safely onboard.
“Many times I thought I was going to die of cold until help arrived,” he said.