What are the chances of coming across a message in a bottle that was thrown into the sea by you a decade ago? Something similar and quite miraculous happened in Japan when a boat that was washed off in the 2011 tsunami was rediscovered in the country.
According to Japan’s ANN News CH, the boat was found off Hachijo island earlier this month. It was reported to have been washed off in March 2011 when a 9.0 magnitude earthquake triggered one of the most catastrophic tsunamis in the country’s history. The Tsunami hit the eastern coast of Japan and killed more than 18,000 people.
According to a report in Guardian, the boat has returned to Japan’s coasts nine years and nine months after it was washed off into the ocean from Kesennuma town. After the registration number of the 5.5-metre fibreglass boat was checked it was confirmed to be a part of the Kesennuma fishing fleet, reported Mainichi Shimbun.
However, this is not the first time that a boat washed off in the 2011 tsunami has found its way back home. A lost fishing boat was discovered at Kochi Prefecture in 2019, reported the Japan Times. The boat originally belonged to Ishinomaki, Miyagi Prefecture.
The lost boat was spotted by a Kochi Prefectural Police patrol vessel off the coast of Susaki city. Returning after eight years the boat had signs of deterioration like a large amount of shellfish clinging on to it. However, the currents of the Pacific ocean brought the boat back home just like the one that recently came home.
The boat that made it home this month also has signs of deterioration. The fibreglass boat was encrusted with coral and had fish and crabs swimming in it. According to Mainchi, a local expert on ocean currents guessed the journey of the boat and said that it can be estimated that after the boat was swept away to an area near the American West Coast during the tsunami, it moved to Southeast Asia on the North Equatorial Current, and then washed up back home with the help of Kuroshio Current.
It is not just boats that have returned home after years of drifting in the sea. According to a BBC report, various objects like a Harley Davidson bike, a village board, a football have also washed up at coasts of Canada, Hawaii, and Alaska. The objects were shipped back home after identification.