A Cuban man floats to U.S. by Styrofoam boat. Coast Guard spokesperson Marilyn Fajardo stated that the castaway made a seven foot long boat out of styrofoam and floated in the Florida Straits for 23 days. A U.S. Customs and Boarder Protection aircraft on a surveillance detail spotted the man on his makeshift vessel 51 miles south of Marathon. A U.S. Coast Guard vessel picked up the castaway on Wednesday July 14, 2010 and will provide general necessities: food, water, clothing, and medical attention, until officials determine what to do with him. Officials can return the man to Cuba or transport him to a hospital.
Authorities and boating experts are amazed that the man survived the trip with little provisions and inadequate shelter. Spokesman Juan A. Munoz Torres of the U.S. Customs and Border Protection Agency maintained that the migrant did "not require hospitalization...he was dehydrated and provided with an IV."
Generally, all Cuban migrants intercepted at sea are returned to Cuba unless they require hospitalization or qualify for resettlement elsewhere. If a migrant requires hospitalization, the person remains in the U.S. and may apply for a green card after one year.
The man and his Stryofoam ship set sail from Havana, Cuba on June 20, 2010.