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One dead, one missing in Iriomote incidents

Date Posted: 2009-10-22

Winds and high waves struck Iriomote Island, often said to be the last remaining unexplored areas of Okinawa, sweeping tourists and their canoe instructors out to sea.

In an incident last Wednesday, waves sucked a boating instructor and a group of three tourists into deep water. The instructor and one of the tourists managed eventually to get ashore and were rescued.

A 64-year-old tourist who’d been directed by the instructor to “go back to shore and wait there for evacuation” had made it to the shore earlier, but the instructor could not tell the rescuers the location. He was found ashore the next day unharmed.

The third tourist became separated by high waves and was swept away. His body has not been found.

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