Belfast Telegraph

Pensioner saved from river 'lucky to survive'

By Cate McCurry

An elderly motorist had a lucky escape after she was rescued by a group of canoeists who spotted her trapped in the Upper River Bann.

The woman, who is believed to be aged in her mid-80s, was pulled from the water after her Toyota Yaris car became stuck down a bank near the Cranagh Marina in Coleraine.

It's understood the pensioner then made her way into the water where the group of canoeists saw her and alerted emergency services. One bystander said the lady was "upset and confused".

"It was very cold and it could have went terribly wrong, but luckily the group got her out and stayed with her until the ambulance and police arrived," the bystander explained.

The PSNI moved the elderly woman's car back to the pier while she was taken to Causeway Hospital.

Another witness said: "We are not too sure how she ended up in the water, but a passing canoeist was able to raise the alarm and they rang for an ambulance. She was in complete shock and was very lucky to survive.

"Police were then able to reverse her car back on to the pier. It's a very fast-flowing river."

A spokesman for the Northern Ireland Ambulance Service stated: "NI Ambulance Service attended an incident on the Portstewart Road at 10.10am on Monday morning.

"One patient was taken to Causeway Hospital."

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