Boy picks shipping container for hide-and-seek, ends up 2,500 km from home

Shipping containers are seen in this file photo. Andrew Vaughan / The Canadian Press

A simple game of hide-and-seek turned into a 2,500-kilometre mishap after a Bangladeshi teen fell asleep inside a shipping container and was sent to Malaysia.

The 15-year-old boy, identified only by his first name, Fahim, was playing the game with his friends at Bangladesh’s Chittagong seaport on Jan. 11 when he found what he thought was the perfect place to hide – the inside of an open shipping container.

The only problem is that Fahim accidentally locked himself inside and couldn’t figure out how to open the doors.

Sure enough, no one could hear the 15-year-old’s cries for help, and the container was loaded onto a Malaysia-bound commercial vessel, reports the Times of India.

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According to various media reports, the teen spent between five and six days inside the container as the boat made its 2,500-kilometre journey to Malaysia’s Klang port, docking on Jan. 17.

It was his cries for help and pounding on the container walls that tipped off the Klang Port Authority to his existence.

Video shared online, and verified by the Times of India, appears to show the boy emerging from the container before being taken away on a stretcher.

At first, because the boy didn’t speak the language and couldn’t explain to his rescuers how he ended up in such a predicament, police thought that he was a victim of human trafficking.

“He was the only one found in the container. A police report was lodged and as he was having a fever, he was taken for medical examination,” Datuk Seri Saifuddin Nasution Ismail, Malaysia’s home minister, was quoted as saying by the country’s national news agency Bernama.

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However, while Fahim was in hospital, police learned that he was simply a kid playing a game that landed him in a precarious situation.

“Investigations found no elements of human trafficking. The boy is just believed to have entered the container, fell asleep and found himself here,” Ismail said on Jan. 20.

Fahim will be repatriated to Bangladesh.

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