Dehydrated Haitian boaters turn up in Portland
Four Haitian fishermen who landed in Buff Bay on Tuesday were severely dehydrated and appeared to be malnourished, the Portland police have reported.
The men are being treated and held at an undisclosed facility in the parish.
Portland police and civic officials have been on the lookout for Haitian boaters in the wake of the assassination of that country’s president, Jovenel Moïse, on July 7 in the capital, Port-au-Prince.
Deputy Superintendent of Police Throyville Haughton disclosed that the fishermen reported suffering mechanical difficulty at sea.
“We have learned that they were out fishing when their small boat developed engine problems and so they drifted for days, probably without food and water.
“They also encountered rough and choppy sea conditions while they were fishing and so they drifted for days and afterwards ended up in our waters on the coast of Spring Gardens in Buff Bay,” Haughton told The Gleaner.
The Haitians reportedly indicated to two men on the beach that they were stranded at sea and were drifting for 10 days.
They were first spotted by Roderick Hunter, a resident of Spring Gardens. Hunter said the men were spotted alighting from the small fishing boat shortly before 6 a.m.
“They were suffering badly, man. But dem come up and mi likkle brethren give dem some tea and bread fi eat,” Hunter told The Gleaner.
“They had dead fish on the boat and it was stink. They also had fishing lines and there were empty gasolene bottles.”
The four men were later handcuffed and transported by the police to a holding area, where they underwent medical tests and were treated by health officials.