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Woman Rescued 38 HOURS After Falling Overboard

Zhejiang TV screenshot

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Ryan Pickrell China/Asia Pacific Reporter
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In a remarkable test of her will to survive, a Chinese woman swam for a day and a half after falling overboard on a Royal Caribbean cruise.

The People’s Daily reported that the woman, 32-year-old Ms. Fan, fell overboard as her cruise ship was making its way from Fukuoka, Japan, to Shanghai, China. It is estimated she fell from one of the ship’s upper decks at around 9 p.m. Aug. 10.

At around 11 a.m. Aug. 12, fishing trawler No. 48688 and trawler No. 48888 spotted Fan in an area not far from a Shanghai port, and immediately commenced rescue operations, explained the Zhoushan Daily.

Fan’s father said the whole family went on a four-day cruise to Japan and South Korea. At 10 p.m. Aug. 10, Fan’s father noticed that his daughter had not returned from the walk she had gone out for a few hours earlier. Her absence was reported to the help desk. One hundred staff members conducted a search, and a message was sent out to the Chinese coast guard.

When the coast guard got in touch with the family, they said that Fan had likely fallen overboard and the chances for survival were slim to none.

The number of people who don’t know how to swim in China vastly outnumber the people who do. Luckily for Fan and her family, Fan is a good swimmer. In fact, given her recent stint at sea, it could easily be said that she is a phenomenal swimmer.

Fan fell from a height of 91 feet into the water. She then went 38 hours without access to food or water. She didn’t have a life jacket or any sort of flotation device.

When she first fell into the water, Fan tried to catch up to the cruise ship, but realized it would be better to conserve her strength. While at sea, Fan saw two other ships, but she couldn’t get their attention.

When she was finally rescued, Fan was in surprisingly good condition. She had blisters on her arms from severe sun exposure and a few minor injuries from jellyfish stings, but other than that, Fan was fine.

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