Woman treads water for 10 hours while awaiting rescue after cruise ship mishap

British tourist Kay Longstaff (C) exits Croatias coast guard ship in Pula, on August 19, 2018, which saved her after falling off a cruise ship near Croatian coast. - British tourist Kay Longstaff went overboard from the Norwegian Star cruise ship about 60 miles (95km) off Croatia's coast shortly before midnight on August 18, 2018. She spent 10 hours in the sea before being rescued by Croatias coastal guards, and taken to the hospital. (Photo by STR / AFP) / Croatia OUT / The erroneous mention[s] appearing in the metadata of this photo by STR has been modified in AFP systems in the following manner: [on August 19, 2018] instead of [on August 20, 2018]. Please immediately remove the erroneous mention[s] from all your online services and delete it (them) from your servers. If you have been authorized by AFP to distribute it (them) to third parties, please ensure that the same actions are carried out by them. Failure to promptly comply with these instructions will entail liability on your part for any continued or post notification usage. Therefore we thank you very much for all your attention and prompt action. We are sorry for the inconvenience this notification may cause and remain at your disposal for any further information you may require. (Photo credit should read STR/AFP/Getty Images)

A British woman was saved by the Croatian Coast Guard after spending what she said was close to 10 hours treading water overnight in the Adriatic Sea after falling off a cruise ship.

Kay Longstaff, who lives in Spain, according to her Twitter account, spoke to Croatian news outlet HRT shortly after arriving back on land.

“I fell off the back of the Norwegian Star,” she told HRT. “I was in the water for 10 hours, so these wonderful guys rescued me. I’m very lucky to be alive.”

Longstaff, 46, was then led by medical personnel to an ambulance.

Lovro Orešković, the captain of the ship that rescued her, told local media that it was a “miracle” that she survived.

“On the cruise liner they thought she didn’t survive,” Orešković said. “She is clearly fit. She told us she does yoga, and that as she floated in the sea she sang the whole time so that her body temperature wouldn’t fall, and to stay awake.”

A Norwegian Cruise Lines spokesperson confirmed that a guest went overboard on Sunday morning “as Norwegian Star made her way to Venice.”

“The Coast Guard was notified and a search-and-rescue operation ensued. We are pleased to advise that the guest was found alive, is currently in stable condition, and has been taken ashore in Croatia for further treatment. We are very happy that the individual is now safe and will soon be reunited with friends and family.”

It was unclear how the woman went overboard.

A patrol boat and an airplane were part of the rescue effort, according to the Croatian Ministry of Defense.