Pure Nightmare Fuel: Man Spends Two Days in Tiny Air Bubble In Sunken Ship

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After two days trapped in freezing cold water and breathing from an air bubble in an upturned tugboat under the ocean, Harrison Okene was sure he was going to die. Then a torch light pierced the darkness.

Ship’s cook Okene, 29, was on board the Jascon-4 tugboat when it capsized on May 26 due to heavy Atlantic ocean swells around 30 km (20 miles) off the coast of Nigeria, while stabilising an oil tanker filling up at a Chevron platform.

Of the 12 people on board, divers recovered 10 dead bodies while a remaining crew member has not been found.

SEE ALSO: Miracle At Sea – Sailor Survives After Spending 2 Days Inside Sunken Ship

Somehow Okene survived, breathing inside a four foot high bubble of air as it shrunk in the waters slowly rising from the ceiling of the tiny toilet and adjoining bedroom where he sought refuge, until two South African divers eventually rescued him.

“I was there in the water in total darkness just thinking it’s the end. I kept thinking the water was going to fill up the room but it did not,” Okene said, parts of his skin peeling away after days soaking in the salt water.

“I was so hungry but mostly so, so thirsty. The salt water took the skin off my tongue,” he said. Seawater got into his mouth but he had nothing to eat or drink throughout his ordeal.

9 Comments on "Pure Nightmare Fuel: Man Spends Two Days in Tiny Air Bubble In Sunken Ship"

  1. Anarchy Pony | Dec 3, 2013 at 10:23 pm |

    Damn, I bet it felt like an eternity.

    • I read somewhere that he thought he’d only been down there for about 12 hours.

      • Kevin Leonard | Dec 4, 2013 at 2:23 pm |

        … the eternal now …

      • Anarchy Pony | Dec 4, 2013 at 3:12 pm |

        I don’t know whether that’s better or worse.

        • I imagine time becomes a bit relative when you’re trapped in a cold dark space fully expecting to die there. Might also have something to do with the minds habit of suppressing trauma memories. I’d guess that the joy of being found probably washed away a lot of dark thoughts. I also read that he was haunted by sounds that he was sure were fish eating and fighting over his dead crewmates.

  2. Poor bastard. He’s probably traumatized for life after that.

    • Saint Eli | Dec 4, 2013 at 1:23 pm |

      Also possible that you never take anything in your life for granted again and enjoy every day deeply after an experience like that..

      • InfvoCuernos | Dec 4, 2013 at 4:52 pm |

        I’m sure he will appreciate some things, but I bet a cruise won’t be one them.

  3. “it’s always the cook” ….. “We will start with the perfect omelette which is made with two eggs not three. Amateurs often add milk for density; this is a mistake.”

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