The Associated Press reported a 1951 Chevy pickup, converted into a boat, got within 40 miles of Florida
This truck/boat was spotted, on July 16th, 2003 by a Bureau of Immigration and Customs patrol plane. It was later intercepted by two U.S. Coast Guard boats. The truck was kept afloat by attaching empty 55 gallon drums to the bottom, making it the first known truck raft to attempt crossing the Florida Straits from Cuba to Key West. It was powered by a propeller attached to the drive shaft, propelling it along at 8 miles per hour. The tires were still on the vintage Chevy truck. Eduarado Perez Graz, one of the 12 immigrants on board, stated “We arrived at the coast in the same truck and assembled everything in six hours. If they had let us get to Key West, we would have been able to drive it right onto the sand.”
The Associated reported on March 12, 2005 Luis Grass, his wife, Hisora Hernandez, and son Angel Luis Grass Hernandez, who attempted the voyage from Cuba to the United States in the above 1951 Chevy pickup, finally made it to U.S. soil. In addition to the 2003 attempt, in 2004 they were again intercepted short of landing on U.S. soil. This time in an old Buick Sedan.
The successful trip was finally achieved by crossing the U.S./Mexico border near Bownsville, Texas.