Four anglers and their boat skipper were adrift at sea for about eight hours in the waters of Pulau Seri Buat, Rompin in Pahang yesterday after its engine broke down before they were rescued by the Malaysian Maritime Enforcement Agency (MMEA).

Johor MMEA director Maritime First Admiral Aminuddin Abdul Rashid said the local men, ages from 58 to 73, were found at 11.40 pm, about 6.5 nautical miles northeast of Pulau Layak, Rompin.

He said the victims ventured to sea at about 9 am from Kuala Rompin, Pahang and an emergency call via the MERS 999 was received by the MMEA from the skipper at about 3.30 pm.

"Upon receiving the distress call, the Johor Bahru Maritime Rescue Sub-Centre deployed the Pengawal 32 vessel from Mersing Maritime Zone to track the victims' boat," he said in a statement today.

He said, the details of the incident were also channeled to local maritime community and related agencies to assist in the search and rescue effort.

Aminuddin said the victims were discovered about 10.6 nautical miles northwest from the last location when they reported about their boat's engine failure.

"All of them were found safe on the boat and did not experience any injuries.

"The victims were then transferred to Pengawal 32 vessel while the faulty boat was towed to the Malaysian Maritime Jetty in Tanjung Gemok, Pahang," he said, adding that they arrived at the jetty at about 2.30 am today.

Aminuddin has advised the maritime community conducting activities at sea to prioritise safety and to carry a Personal Locator Beacon for sending out an emergency signal and their location, which could help to shorten the search time.