Man lost in Andes found alive 4 months later

Updated 15 September 2013
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Man lost in Andes found alive 4 months later

BUENOS AIRES: Argentinean authorities have rescued a 58-year-old Uruguayan man who had been lost in the Andes mountains since May.
Raul Gomez Cincunegui was spotted at the Sardina mountain shelter on Sunday, at an altitude of some 4,500 meters (nearly 15,000 feet) in the Los Patos Sur valley.
Police then transferred him by helicopter to a hospital in the eponymous capital of western San Juan province.
“It’s a miracle,” San Juan Governor Jose Luis Gioja said.
Rawson Hospital chief of operations Victor Olmos said Gomez was recovering in the intensive care unit but was “only dehydrated” and otherwise in good health. He also had signs of malnutrition.
Gomez survived feeding on sugar and raisins he had with him, as well as food stored in mountain shelters, according to a police report.
“I still cannot believe it. He came here and spoke by phone with his wife, his mother and daughter. He was very excited, though exhausted,” said Gioja.
Gomez had been reported missing in May while he traveled by motorcycle from Uruguay to Chile. There, his motorcycle broke down so he decided to cross the Andes on foot.
He said he became disoriented after heavy snowfall and was left stranded at an altitude of 4,000 meters.
A search for Gomez was called off in July due to heavy snowstorms.
Gomez, who has a history of heart and respiratory problems, ventured across the mountain range after crossings for hikers were closed on April 30.
His case recalled the Andes flight disaster of 1972, when a charter plane carrying members of the Old Christians rugby team of Uruguay crashed in the Andes.
The accident left 29 dead — some due to the crash and others due to an avalanche — and the 16 survivors were rescued alive after spending 72 days stranded in the harsh, high-altitude mountain conditions.
Their ordeal was made into film and television shows, including the 1993 feature “Alive.”


Japan worker’s pay docked for taking lunch 3 minutes early

Updated 21 June 2018
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Japan worker’s pay docked for taking lunch 3 minutes early

TOKYO: A Japanese city official has been reprimanded and fined for repeatedly leaving his desk during work hours — but only for around three minutes to buy lunch.
The official, who works at the waterworks bureau in the western city of Kobe, began his designated lunch break early 26 times over the space of seven months, according to a city spokesman.
“The lunch break is from noon to 1 pm. He left his desk before the break,” the spokesman said on Thursday.
The official, 64, had half a day’s pay docked as punishment and the bosses called a news conference to apologize.
“It’s deeply regrettable that this misconduct took place. We’re sorry,” a bureau official told reporters, bowing deeply.
The worker was in violation of a public service law stating that officials have to concentrate on their jobs, according to the bureau.
The news sparked a heated debate on Japanese social media, with many defending the official.
“It’s sheer madness. It’s crazy. What about leaving your desk to smoke?” said one Twitter user.
“Is this a bad joke? Does this mean we cannot even go to the bathroom?” said another.
The city had previously suspended another official in February for a month after he had left his office numerous times to buy a ready-made lunch box during work hours.
The official was absent a total of 55 hours over six months, according to the city.