31 Oct, 2022 @ 12:59
1 min read

British man capsized in English Channel was trying to paddle to Spain, claims rescuer


A British man thought he had arms of steel to navigate the English channel and kayak to Spain.

But it turns out he has a gut of steel instead after the Blackpool resident capsized and claimed to have survived for 12 days eating just seaweed and raw mussels, and drinking rainwater. 

Daniel Lewis was found in the middle of the English Channel, near the Strait of Dover, on Thursday clinging to a buoy after his inflatable kayak capsized. 

Daniel Lewis was rescued in the middle of the English Channel. Photo: Facebook

Dutch fisherman Tunis Van Luut rescued the 28-year-old who said he had been trying to paddle to Spain and had been out at sea since October 15. 

Van Lutt told The Mirror that Lewis was unable to stand when they pulled him onboard the French fishing vessel De Madelaine. 

The skipper said: “He needed water and he was drinking a lot, and I asked him who are you and how is it possible that you are here on this buoy without your clothes, just your swimming shorts – there was nothing else.

“His condition was so bad I could see his eyes were very deep in his head and he had a lot of blue veins on his head and arms.

“He told me he wanted to go to Spain, but I said that is stupid because of the distance.”

Coastguards in France rescued the 28-year-old from Blackpool.

The ambitious paddler was now recovering in hospital. 

Coastguards in France said it did not appear Lewis was experienced or ready to attempt to cross one of the world’s busiest shipping lanes. 

Orlane Saliou, spokeswoman for the Maritime Gendarmerie, the French equivalent of the Coastguard, rubbished claims he had been out at sea for 12 days, and said authorities were investigating the bizarre incident. 

“The person suffered from hypothermia, general fatigue and dehydration but given his goodp physical resistance, his general state of health is quite good,” she said.

“The victim was taken care of by the French healthcare services as soon as they arrived in the territory.”

Daniel Lewis is now recovering in hospital.

About 400 commercial ships pass through the English Channel every day. 


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