Has Anyone Survived a Fall From a Cruise Ship?

By Alice Nichols

It is a rare and tragic event when someone falls overboard on a cruise ship. Unfortunately, it does happen and it is a very dangerous situation.

A fall from a cruise ship means the person has to fight the odds of surviving the fall itself, as well as the conditions of the sea that can be deadly.

When someone falls off of a cruise ship, they are likely to have very little time to react before hitting the water below. Depending on the height, it could be anywhere from seconds to minutes before they hit the water below and are submerged in it.

The likelihood of survival from such a height is very low due to several factors. The water temperature is one of them – if it’s too cold, then even if you survive the fall, you could still succumb to hypothermia.

The force of hitting the water can also cause severe injury or even death due to its sheer power.

In some cases, however, people have managed to survive such falls. In 2009, an 18-year-old man fell off a Royal Caribbean cruise ship while vacationing with his family in Mexico. He survived by swimming for 10 hours in shark-infested waters until he was rescued by fishermen several miles away from where he fell off.

Other cases include that of Kay Longstaff, who fell off the back of Norwegian Star cruise ship in 2018 but managed to stay afloat for 10 hours by floating on her back and singing songs to keep her spirits up until she was rescued by Croatian coast guards.

These stories are remarkable tales of survival against all odds but they should not be taken as encouragement for anyone thinking about jumping overboard from a cruise ship. The risk involved is simply too great and should not be taken lightly.


Has Anyone Survived a Fall From a Cruise Ship?: While falls from cruise ships are rare but tragic events, there have been some remarkable stories where people have managed to survive against all odds and were eventually rescued. However, it is important not to take this as encouragement for anyone thinking about jumping overboard as there are simply too many risks involved.