SALT LAKE CITY — A British woman fell off a cruise ship and treaded water for 10 hours before officials pulled her out of the Adriatic Sea, according to multiple news reports.
The woman was on a Norwegian Star ship off the coast of Croatia when she fell overboard, crashing into the water, ABC News reported.
A spokesperson for Norwegian told ABC News the Coast Guard was notified immediately, and a rescue operation began right after she fell overboard.
"We are pleased to advise that the guest was found alive, is currently in stable condition, and has been taken ashore in Croatia for further treatment. We are very happy that the individual, who is a UK resident, is now safe and will soon be reunited with friends and family,” the spokesperson said.
David Radas, a spokesperson for the Croatian Ministry of Maritime Affairs, told ABC News that footage from the woman’s fall shows her going overboard at 11:30 p.m. on Saturday. She was rescued at 9:45 a.m. Sunday.
The woman told Croatian TV station HRT that she fell off the ship’s back deck. The woman — a flight attendant named Kay Longstaff — had experience with emergency training.
"I fell off of the back of Norwegian Star and I was in the water for 10 hours," she told HRT. "So these wonderful guys rescued me. ... I am very lucky to be alive."12 comments on this story
Longstaff told rescuers she survived in the water for so long because she spent so much time doing yoga. She said she sang overnight to keep from feeling cold.
University of Portsmouth professor Mike Tipton told BBC News that Longstaff fell into a “perfect” survival situation since the water was warm and calm.
Since she didn’t face waves, the woman could float and swim to stay close enough to the cruise line.
"The water temperature would have been about 28 to 29 (degrees Celsius) which is a little bit warmer than a swimming pool," he said.