Men Rescued From Pacific Island After Writing SOS Message in Sand

Three men stranded on an uninhabited island in the Pacific Ocean were rescued on August 2 after an SOS message they wrote in the sand was spotted by Australian and US aircraft overhead.

This footage, shared by the US Air Force’s 36th Wing, shows the large distress message written on Pikelot Island as seen from above.

The Australian Defence Department said the three men were missing for three days after their seven-meter vessel sailed off course and ran out of fuel.

The men became stranded on Pikelot Island, 190 kilometers (120 miles) west of where they set off, Australian officials said. They had started out on a planned 23-nautical-mile journey between the atolls of Pulawat and Pulap.

US and Australian crews assisted in the search.

“I am proud of the response and professionalism of all on board as we fulfill our obligation to contribute to the safety of life at sea wherever we are in the world," said HMAS Canberra’s commanding officer, Cpt Terry Morrison. Credit: Master Sgt. Richard Ebensberger/36th Wing via Storyful