Photo-taking woman falls into icy Hudson River, prompting desperate rescue
HOBOKEN — A woman who went onto a closed New Jersey pier to try to take a picture was rescued after falling through a gap into the icy water of the Hudson River over the weekend, authorities said. Now police are considering whether to press charges.
Chief Ken Ferrante of the Hoboken police department said the 24-year-old Berkeley Heights woman climbed a fence near Pier 13 but didn't see the danger due to darkness and snow. Officials said she plunged more than 10 feet into the water through a hole or a gap between the pier and dock.
The woman's brother tried unsuccessfully to rescue her and then called 911 just after 3:30 a.m. Saturday. An officer reported the woman submerged to her waist in the water, holding onto a piece of metal. Officers stabilized her with two water rescue bags and used a rope to lift her to safety.
NJ.com reports that in order to loop a life preserver ring around the victim, two officers had to lower half their bodies into the hole while three other officers held onto their legs.
“It took a collaborative effort with all officers putting their safety at risk to save the victim from drowning,” said Lt. Danilo Cabrera.
Officer Duke McCourt told WABC that the situation was unsettling, since officers didn't know whether the pier was compromised.
“It was all covered with snow, and it was chaotic, and we’re just happy everything worked out,” McCourt said.
The woman was taken to the Hoboken University Medical Center, where no update on her condition was available.