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Wed 20 Aug 2014 11:12 AM

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Emirati jet ski rider rescued after 15 hrs trapped at sea

34-year-old male was rescued by helicopter emergency services after riding in rough seas on Sunday

Emirati jet ski rider rescued after 15 hrs trapped at sea
Image for illustrative purposes only.

An Emirati jet ski user was rescued by helicopter emergency services on Monday after spending 15 hours trapped out at sea off the coast of Abu Dhabi, it was reported.

Abdul Aziz Al Kaabi, 34, was riding in rough seas at around 9pm on Sunday night when his craft flipped over.

A fellow jet ski companion returned to shore to raise the alarm and called emergency services for help.

Abu Dhabi Police’s Air Wing launched a search and rescue helicopter operation but its efforts were hampered by low visibility and strong winds.

Using night-vision binoculars and thermal scanners, Al Kaabi was eventually found floating in a life jacket 33 kilometres west of Abu Dhabi at around 3pm on Monday and was taken to Sheikh Khalifa Medical City hospital.

Despite having spent 15 hours out at sea, his condition was described as fair.

“I was overwhelmed with joy when I saw the Abu Dhabi Police helicopter,” he was quoted as saying by The National newspaper.

The incident occurred in the same week Dubai Maritime City Authority (DMCA) launched a new campaign to crackdown on illegal jet skis and ordered all owners to register their water craft.

The move is described as a significant move towards regulating jet ski usage in Dubai.

The two-month campaign will run from September 1 to October 30 and will focus on regulating water sports in the emirate by encouraging owners of personal water craft who do not possess documents showing proof of ownership such as bills of purchase.