Makeshift Styrofoam boat, similar to ones used by refugees from Cuba, washes ashore in NC

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Friday, July 8, 2022
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A makeshift boat of Styrofoam washed ashore in North Carolina.

OAK ISLAND, N.C. (WTVD) -- A makeshift boat of Styrofoam washed ashore in North Carolina.

It was first spotted July 3 at Caswell Beach in Oak Island. Independence Day beachgoers were the first to spot the boat and inspect it.

The boat utilized Styrofoam blocks, held together with pieces of wood and metal. Inside the boat, there was an engine and battery, handmade oars and spoiled food.

Emily Poole was one of the people who found the boat. For her, it was a poignant reminder of the privileges many Americans take for granted.

"Hope the passengers made it but really makes you think about how much we take our life for granted in the US," she wrote on Facebook. "Others want to live here so bad they would risk building this boat to travel 800 miles to freedom."

According to our newsgathering partners at the News & Observer, boats made of Styrofoam similar to this one are known to be used by refugees attempting to sail from Cuba to the United States. The boats are difficult to maneuver and often capsize.

Caswell Beach Police Department and the U.S. Coast Guard hauled the boat off shortly after it washed ashore. The fate of the people who set sail in the boat remains unclear.