Navy rescues women and their dogs after five months adrift in Pacific

2 Americans and Their Dogs Rescued After 5 Months at Sea

Two months into their trip, well after they were scheduled to arrive in Tahiti, the women began making distress calls, but there were no vessels close and they were too far out to sea for the signals to be detected on land.

Two women who had been adrift in the Pacific Ocean for almost five months after their sailboat was damaged have been rescued, according to the U.S. Navy.

The two set sail on May 3 and ran into trouble nearly immediately, Ms Appel said, hitting a storm that pounded their vessel with 80-to-112-kilometre-per-hour winds for three days as they travelled the Hawaiian islands.

Tasha Fuiava and Jennifer Appel, along with their two dogs, were located Wednesday drifting in their boat approximately 900 miles southeast of Japan, according to CNN. They were found thousands of miles off course after a series of troubles.

But they weren't starving.

Even worse - Appel and Fuiaba's mast later broke, and the duo were left with just their water purifier, and year's worth of rations, and their two dogs.

"And both of them - we actually thought it was lights out", Appel said, "and they were horrific".

"I honestly believed we were going to die within the next 24 hours", Appel said.

"Various things on her boat..." They drifted aimlessly and sent unanswered distress calls for 98 consecutive days.

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"I went downstairs with the boys and we basically laid huddled on the floor, and I told them not to bark because the sharks could hear us breathing", Appel said.

"We were just incredibly lucky that our hull was strong enough to withstand the onslaught ..."

She also said the ordeal was life-changing, Hawaii News Now reported: "There is a true humility to wondering if today is your last day, if tonight is your last night".

"When I asked Natasha, I told her I have no idea what's going to happen out there and she said, "That's OK, I've never sailed". Steven Wasson, Ashland commanding officer, said in the release. They often had to get creative, such as when two of their watermakers (a device that turns salt water into drinking water) failed, and they combined working pieces from each of the machines to make a functioning one.

"When we saw you guys coming over the horizon it was, 'Oh God, we're saved, '" Appel said.

"I'm grateful for their service to our country ..."

The women were given medical assessments and will remain aboard the USS Ashland until its next port of call, the Navy said.

"There's different sunrises and sunsets every day ... and you're around for a reason, but you may as well use the time to do something beneficial".

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