A WOMAN rescued from pitch-black waters 20 miles north east of Flamborough Head after falling from a ferry said: “I thought I was going to die.”
Jeni Anderson, 23, from Welwyn Garden City in Hertfordshire, said she felt “very, very lucky” to have survived after spending half an hour fighting for her life in rough seas, having fallen from the Newcastle to Holland Princess Seaways DFDS ferry at about 8.35pm last Monday.
She said: “I just remember thinking that was going to be it. I remember thinking what a terrible way to go.”
The 23-year-old had been on a deck of the ferry at around 8.30pm on Monday with two of her friends when she fell.
“I just remember going over, I don’t remember really how,” she said.
Miss Anderson said she had no recollection of hitting the water.
“I just have flashbacks of being in the water and trying to swim after the boat even though I knew that was not really going to help me and shouting and screaming so that even if people couldn’t see me then maybe they could hear me.
“They took my friends off to a room and I think the captain said to them that in 20 years he has never found anyone who has gone over and my chances were very slim of being found.
“I know that I am very, very lucky and a couple of people have said to me that I should buy a lottery ticket this weekend.”
She spent about 30 minutes in the water before she was saved by the ferry’s rescue craft and airlifted by an RAF Sea King helicopter to Scarborough Hospital.
“I remember there suddenly being people around me and light and I think that was when I was lifted up to the helicopter,” she said.
“I do not think I can really put it into words how grateful I am to everybody involved, the coastguard, the staff of the ferry, the RAF helicopter and the people in the hospital.”
She insisted that neither she nor her friends had been drunk at the time of the fall.
She added: “One of my friends was on the phone and I was by the railings and I went over.”