Cruise passenger dies after being dropped in the sea

A 73 year old cruise passenger has died in hospital after being dropped into near-freezing sea waters off Norway.

Janet Richardson from Cumbria, had been suffering from internal bleeding on board the Ocean Countess, which was travelling from Hull to Norway.

Paramedics were transferring Mrs Richardson from the cruise ship to a lifeboat, when she was accidentally dropped into the sea.

Despite being rescued after a few minutes and taken to hospital in Carlisle, she later died.

According to reports, UK operator Cruise and Maritime Voyages, which operates the service, said it was “deeply shocked” and that they were co-operating with the Norwegian authorities.

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Following a £3 million pound refurbishment programme, Ocean Countess joined the Cruise & Maritime Voyages fleet in April 2010.

The ship originally entered service as the Cunard Countess and became one of the best-known ships to sail the Caribbean Sea. The 17,593 grt Ocean Countess has seven passenger decks and accommodates about 800 passengers.