Hundreds Of Drunk Americans Washed Ashore In Canada Because Of Strong Winds

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About 1,500 Americans accidentally invaded Canada this weekend when strong winds pushed them off course during an annual float down the St. Clair River separating Michigan from Ontario.

Mark R. Rummel / The Associated Press

Each year during the Port Huron Float Down, people climb aboard inflatable rafts, inner tubes, and other vessels and float down the river for a day — aided by plenty of alcohol.

But this year, the weather intervened and many of them ended up on the wrong side of the international border in Sarnia, Ontario.

The whole thing was a huge headache for Canadian authorities, who suddenly had a bunch of dubiously sober Americans and their watercraft to deal with.

City police, OPP, Paramedics, Coast Guard & RCMP working to get "Floaters" back to boarder.

Peter Garapick, superintendent of search and rescue operations for the Canadian Coast Guard, told the Sarnia Observer that many were worried about entering Canada without their passports. Some even jumped into the water in an attempt to swim back to Michigan.

“Those were the people we had our eye on, because they were just jumping in and saying, 'I'm swimming back home.'”

The Coast Guard reassured everyone that they were safe, though.

The city of Sarnia arranged for buses to shuttle the visitors back to the border and into the care of US Customs.

It has been crazy busy. Thank you Sarnia Transit. Also thank you Esso & Lanxess. Couldn't have done it without you.

Organizers of the Port Huron Float Down later thanked Canada for its hospitality on Facebook.

"We want to express our gratitude to the Canadian Authorities for their assistance and understanding with the floaters who've unintentionally been forced to the Canadian shoreline. You've shown us true kindness and what it means to be amazing neighbors!"

Ishmael Daro is a social news editor for BuzzFeed and is based in Toronto.

Contact Ishmael N. Daro at ishmael.daro@buzzfeed.com.

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