Joseph Trebbe was out fishing off the coast of Boynton Beach when all of a sudden, his boat flooded with seawater and started to sink.
Trebbe and three other passengers aboard the vessel attempted to start the engine with no luck. In a flurry, they began to scream and whistle at passing boats for help, the Boynton Beach Police Department said.
Fortunately, Trebbe and the other passengers survived the incident, along with four unexpected passengers: A group of kittens.
According to the department, it seems the furry, black-and-white kittens were born on the boat, which Trebbe kept in a storage yard before taking it out on the ocean on Friday morning. The kittens scrambled out when the boat began to fill with water, according to the department.
When Trebbe and the others spotted the kittens, they held the animals above water to protect them as the boat started to flood. Paul Shersty and Dwayne Fernandes, who were fishing nearby, heard the calls for help from Trebbe’s boat, the department said.
Shersty and Fernandes hooked a line to the sinking vessel and towed it in. A few moments later, Towboat U.S. and Boynton Beach Police Marine Officers arrived on scene, leading the entire crew to safety at the Harvey Oyer Boat Ramp.
The kittens are currently up for adoption, police said. The department advises anyone interested in adopting the kittens to check with Palm Beach County Animal Care and Control.