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Monday 11 December 2017

Jedward shock as tragedy strikes on TV shoot


NIAMH HORAN, Entertainment News Reporter

Irish pop sensation Jedward were left shocked after a 20-year-old woman in a wheelchair drowned yards from where they were filming their new reality television show.

The singers were lost for words after seeing the woman and her family only moments before the tragic accident.

The former X Factor and Big Brother stars were filming their much-anticipated reality show, Jedward's Big Adventure, for the BBC when tragedy struck.

The severely-disabled woman fell into the sea and drowned off the Dorset coast in the south of England while strapped into her electric wheelchair.

The 20-year-old, from Solihull in the West Midlands, sank to the bottom of the harbour at Lyme Regis when her wheelchair rolled off the wall.

Sources close to Jedward's camp have described the incident as "deeply upsetting":

"It's such an awful tragedy, a really sad story," said one source. "Everyone is thinking of her family at this time. It was the craziest, saddest thing. It makes you realise just how fragile life is. You should live each day as if it could be your last."

The source continued: "It happened on the same beach where they were filming.

"We had all seen the family before it happened. It's such a tragic accident."

Police, paramedics and the Royal National Lifeboat Institution (RNLI) were called to the incident shortly before 1pm on Friday.

Her family, the boat skipper and RNLI personnel from the nearby lifeboat station dived in and managed to free her, taking her unconscious to the surface.

She was flown by air ambulance to hospital but later died.

Dorset Police have launched an investigation and are appealing for witnesses to the incident on the 19th century harbour wall, known as the Cobb, which features in Jane Austen's Persuasion and John Fowles's The French Lieutenant's Woman.

A police spokesman said: "They were on holiday in Lyme Regis and were waiting to go on a charter boat trip when, tragically, the wheelchair fell into deep water.

"Rescue efforts were made by the family, the boat skipper and later by emergency services, including coastguards, lifeboat and police.

"After considerable difficulty, she was able to be freed."

Sunday Independent

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