Woman feared she’d die and ‘never be found’ after plunging 60ft off ferry

A woman who fell overboard a ferry 60ft into freezing waters has relived her terrifying ordeal nine years on, convinced she was going to die.

Jeni Anderson, who was 23 at the time, went overboard on ferry while travelling from Newcastle to Amsterdam, the Netherlands, on a trip celebrating graduating from university in 2011.

But just 20 miles from the Yorkshire Coast, Jeni toppled overboard and fell 60ft into the sea.

The fall left her semi-conscious, with it said to be a miracle she even survived.

It's then that her terrifying ordeal really began, with her fighting for her survival – hoping someone would find her.


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Speaking about what happened to her on Channel 4's Nightmare Cruises: Going Overboard, Jeni relived believing she was going to die and "never be found".

Jeni had been on the deck of the boat when suddenly she fell, and found herself in the dark and cold sea below.

Not knowing if the ferry would come back for her, she made the decision to attempt to swim towards the nearest land – while those on board with her alerted the captain for help.

Jeni revealed of her ordeal: "I could just see the lights of the ferry although that disappeared after a while. I was on my own and didn't know whether the ferry would come back and find me. I was definitely afraid for my life.

"I was upset, I was crying, I was shouting, I was screaming. I kept trying to stay above the water and I did get to the point where I had fully accepted, 'This is it, I’m going to die. I will never be found'."

Jeni went on: "It was about, 'How do I make this OK? I'm not just going to stay here and let it happen. I'll fight to the end.'

"It was almost like pick a direction in the hope that eventually, that becomes shoreline or coast.

"Towards the end I wasn't necessarily swimming, I was just not drowning. It was becoming a real effort to just stay alive."

Thankfully Jeni was found, and rescued by a lifeboat after she was heard in the water. She was then airlifted to hospital after being in the water for around thirty minutes.

Jeni physically recovered, but confessed she has a fear of water following the traumatic event.

Channel 4's Nightmare Cruises: Going Overboard is available to watch on All 4.

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