Man survived falling off cruise ship because things went ‘perfect’

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  • James Michael Grimes boarded a cruise ship and treaded water for 20 hours.
  • A U.S. Coast Guard rescue coordinator told Insider that all the factors were right for him to survive.
  • “This is definitely the upper limit of survival,” Lieutenant Seth Gross said of Grimes.

28 year old man fell off a cruise ship According to the U.S. Coast Guard Search and Rescue Mission Coordinator, the eve of Thanksgiving miraculously survived because “various factors” worked “perfectly.”

James Michael Grimes was found by a bulk carrier on the night of November 23rd, 20 hours after he fell from the Carnival Valor. Lieutenant Seth Gross, who oversees search and rescue missions in the Louisiana Gulf region, said his crew: Just in time to save Grimes’ life.

However, “that he survived the fall, that he was able to stay afloat, that the sharks couldn’t find him, and that this motor ship just so happened to be in the right position” all kept him alive until the team rescued him. I worked to keep him alive,” an insider told.

Grimes was last seen around 11pm and was reported missing by his family the next day.grimes said ABC’s “Good Morning America” He does not remember falling and only wakes up in the open sea in the middle of the night.

“I found myself in water where I couldn’t see the boat.” Grimes did not respond to an insider’s request for comment.

Grimes described the next 20 hours as the battle of his life. He said he spent much of that time walking by the water, fending off jellyfish and at least one finned creature he could not identify. We made it through. To maintain his energy, he tried to eat floats containing bamboo splinters.

Finally, a ship spotted Grimes and notified the Coast Guard, who rescued him.

“Extreme Limit of Survival”

Gross said it’s very rare, and probably impossible for many, for someone to survive in open water the way Grimes did.

“The Coast Guard has invested a lot of time in search and rescue techniques and training. There are many programs that help determine if they can stay as long as they can survive,” Gross said. “This is definitely the upper limit of viability.”

Grimes told ABC that he was always sure he would be rescued. Efforts to “self-preserve” such as trying to reach the oil platform were “uncommon,” he said.

As Cat Bigney, a survival expert and consultant for Bear Grylls and National Geographic, previously said: insider Simply keeping your cool in a life or death situation can save you in the end.

Of Grimes chewing on flotsam, Gross said he had no idea how much nourishment something floating 20 miles from shore in the middle of the ocean could provide, but they ‘s “small wins” are possible, he added to continue.

Grimes also made smart decisions on the fly, Gross said, including taking off all his clothes so he wouldn’t be a burden and allowing him to be more buoyant.

When Grimes was finally rescued, he was treated for shock, dehydration, and hypothermia. This was another significant risk factor for him by spending 20 hours in 70 degree water. However, he was released in a few days. Gross said the hypothermia could have been more serious, but there are factors that help limit it.

“It varies a lot from person to person, such as when they last ate, their body fat percentage, what they bring to the water, how comfortable they are in the water, etc.” Avoid the worst.

coast guard rescue team

He was just at his breaking point when Coast Guard rescue swimmers arrived at Grimes. rescuer, Richard HoefleAn aviation survival technician, he said he thought he had a moment of energy left by the time Grimes arrived at him.

If the boat or rescue helicopter that spotted Grimes had been 15 minutes later, Grimes may not have survived, Gross said, adding that the Coast Guard’s strong search and rescue efforts and its ability to maintain relations with the boating community said it was due to the efforts of

Cruise ship officials notified the Coast Guard of the situation overboard around 2:30 pm on Thanksgiving Day, more than 14 hours after Grimes was last seen. After beginning the search and rescue mission, the Coast Guard immediately sent out a broadcast to warn other sailors in the Gulf of Mexico that it was actively searching for someone in the water.

crew Bulk carrier “Krinis” Eventually, they found Grimes, who was waving and yelling to get his attention, and alerted the Coast Guard of his whereabouts.

“I think that’s part of why the motor ship had that lookout and was able to report him to us,” Gross said. It’s just one piece of the

When the Coast Guard received the call, the rescue helicopter was only about six miles from the area where Grimes was found. This was another factor that allowed me to get close to Grimes and get him out of the water quickly.

Gross said the helicopter’s clutch position is thanks to the Coast Guard’s Search and Rescue Optimal Planning System. This allows us to estimate where the floaters are. The program basically has him take 5,000 virtual rubber ducks and drop them at specific locations in the ocean, Gross explains. It takes into account a person’s weight, clothing, body fat percentage, whether they have a flotation device, etc., and takes into account weather and sea patterns to predict where they are likely to float at any given time.

“The highest concentration of those rubber ducks is where we search first,” Gross explained.

For Grimes, the system returned over 7,000 square nautical miles of water he could be in. This is about the size of the state of Massachusetts. However, it was accurate enough to place a rescue helicopter very close to where it was eventually found.

“It’s pretty amazing,” Gross said. “This is what we do on a daily basis. I think one of the main reasons people join the Coast Guard is to serve Americans in distress, just like in this case. .”

“And the result of us rescuing him is a truly incredible story of how it all came together.”

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