About “unforgettable experience,” said a tourist who fell overboard a cruise ship and managed to escape by swimming for 20 hours in the waters of the Gulf of Mexico. The accident happened on the Carnival Valor liner, on which the tourist himself, James Michael Grimes, went on a five-day Thanksgiving cruise with his family.
The tourist stayed on board for only one day – the last time they were seen with his sister in a restaurant, where the sister won a competition to play the imaginary guitar, after which she went to her cabin. She also raised the alarm when he did not return to his cabin at night.
At the same time, the tourist cannot explain how he ended up overboard. In an interview with ABC News, he suggested that he “lost consciousness and fell overboard”, waking up already in the water. “I was in the water, but the ship was not visible. I made the decision to swim and try to survive,” said the 28-year-old tourist. As it turned out, he spent 20 hours on the high seas, “battling jellyfish, rough currents and shark-infested waters,” before being discovered in the waves by the US Coast Guard and evacuated by air.
A cruise ship, from which the tourist fell, the coast guard also “stopped” after receiving the news of a man overboard – so the liner was heading to the Mexican island of Cozumel. As soon as the tourist was found, the liner resumed movement. The tourist was transferred to emergency medical care at the airport in New Orleans. “We are immensely grateful that this case ended in a positive outcome,” Lt. Seth Gross, New Orleans Coast Guard Sector Search and Rescue Coordinator, commented to the agency.
“Cruise ships have security barriers in all public areas that prevent guests from falling. Guests should never climb onto the handrails. safety barriers,” the Coast Guard also added.
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