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Kiwi fisherman pulled overboard by marlin

NZ Newswire logoNZ Newswire 4/01/2017
Image of fisherman © Holger Leue/Getty Images Image of fisherman

A marlin has dragged a man, reported to be a Kiwi, overboard and left him treading water for more than five hours off the West Australian coast.

A search vessel found the 30-year-old man off the remote North West Cape, near Exmouth, on Tuesday afternoon without a life jacket, WA Police say.

Earlier, the search had been triggered when the skipper of another boat found the man's vessel adrift with no one aboard.

The BBC reports he is a New Zealander, while rescuers told the ABC he was lucky to be alive after floating in the water for more than five hours without safety equipment.

"You're talking about a microscopic pin dot in the middle of nowhere," Exmouth Volunteer Marine Rescue Group commander Rusty Ellis says.

"For somebody to find him in time was a wonderful thing and I'm very, very grateful for the assistance of everybody, for dropping everything they were doing."

WA Police say the incident highlights why solo fishermen should wear a life vest containing an emergency locator beacon.

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