x Abu Dhabi, UAEMonday 24 July 2017

Emirati sailors stranded off Oman's Musandam after boat swept away

The Emiratis and three friends were stranded off the coast of Musandam for 50 hours.

Three Emiratis and three of their friends were stranded for 50 hours off the coast of Oman's Musandam province on the Strait of Hormuz on Friday.

The group went on a sea outing when their boat was swept away by strong winds and high waves. They returned safely to their homes in Abu Dhabi and Ajman on Sunday.

One of the survivors, Abdullah Mohammed Al Sallami, said they lost the signal on their mobile phones after they were caught up in Khor Najd, in Oman's territorial waters. They had faced "great danger and thought they would die, but Allah's grace came to their rescue," he added.

Mohammed Jamal Al Nahdi, another survivor, said their boat stopped for a long time before they decided to brave the 30-knot gale and the waves that rose above 2.5 metres.

They finally managed to arrive at an Omani beach by sheer luck, he said. From there, an Omani coast guard patrol came to their assistance and took them to the Musandam Police station where their received further help.

The group's original plan was to sail from Fujairah to Sharjah and back, a five-hour trip, according to Hashim Salem, a third survivor. But the winds, compounded by low visibility and rainfall, took their boat astray.