A German tourist saved his own life after falling overboard a yacht off New Zealand’s Gisborne coast – using just a pair of jeans.
Rough conditions and engine trouble meant crew were unable to save Arne Murke, leaving him at the mercy of choppy seas on 6 March.
But luckily, the father-of-one was able to recall a trick used by Navy Seals which sees a pair of trousers easily transformed into a flotation device.
The 30-year-old told the Herald on Sunday: “Luckily, I knew the trick with the jeans. Without the jeans, I wouldn’t be here today.”
His jeans get him afloat for three-and-a-half hours, before he was rescued by a coastguard helicopter based at Hawke’s Bay.
It is the same technique used by a 20-year-old Marine in 1995, who was kept afloat for 36 hours by his trousers.
Lance Corporal Zachary Mayo had fallen off the aircraft carrier USS America in the Arabian Sea.
His ordeal ended when he was rescued by a Pakistani fishing boat, with Mayo suffering nothing more than sunburn.
His experience is referenced in a video posted online by Black Scout Quick Tips, which explains how to perform the manoeuvre.
The demonstrator said: “Obviously take your trousers off. You’re going to tie the bottom of the legs into a square knot. You’re then going to take the waist of your trousers and swing it over your head to capture as much air as you possibly can.
“At that point your trousers are going to be inflated; you’re going to take the knot and put it at the back of your neck. Hold the waist of your pants and make sure you stay afloat.
“Remember to keep your trouser legs wet, don’t let them get dry because you will sink.”