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The coast off northern Norway near where the incident happened (File photo) Hakon Mosvold Larsen/Scanpix

Pensioner who was dropped into freezing sea by medics dies in hospital

Janet Richardson had been on holiday aboard a cruise liner when she fell ill. As she was being evacuated on to a rescue boat she fell into the sub zero seas.

THE BRITISH PENSIONER who was dropped into the sub-zero temperatures of the North Sea after a botched rescue attempt has died in hospital.

Janet Richardson, 73, passed away at the North Cumbria University Hospital in Carlisle on Thursday following the accident. Her husband George, 78, was at her side, Mail Online reports.

Richardson was on the Ocean Countess cruise liner near the Arctic circle when she fell seriously ill and it was decided she should be moved to a hospital in nearby Norway last week.

However, as she was being lifted from the ship to the rescue boat, her stretcher slipped from the grasp of the rescuers and she fell into the water where temperatures were around -3 degree celsius at the time.

It took rescuers almost eight minutes to retrieve Richardson from the water.

She was eventually transferred to a hospital in Bodø, Norway before arriving back in Britain on Thursday.

She was suspected of having major kidney problems and in a statement today the North Cumbria University Hospital in Carlisle confirmed her death on Thursday evening.

The couple were reported to have both been married before and have children from previous relationships as well as a total of eight grandchildren.

The statement added that there would be no further comment as a mark of respect to the family’s wishes, Press Association reports.

The incident is under investigation by the cruise company, Cruise and Maritime Voyages, and the Norwegian rescue authorities.

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