GULF OF MEXICO, near Louisiana (KFOR/Storyful) – A man is extremely lucky to be alive after going overboard a Carnival cruise ship and treading water for up to 15 hours without any floatation device, before he was spotted by the crew of another ship.

The 28-year-old man was spending time with his sister at a bar onboard the cruise ship Carnival Valor, which was headed to Cozumel, Mexico, when the man told his sister he was going to the restroom, but never returned.

The next afternoon, on Thanksgiving, the man was reported missing. The cruise ship retraced its route, finding no sign of the man, as the U.S. Coast Guard coordinated a launch of several rescue crews. Six hours later, in complete darkness, he was found.

One of those organized “watchstanders” was a crew aboard the bulk carrier CRINIS, which spotted the man about 20 miles from Southwest Pass, Louisiana.  

Video at the top of this story shows the man dipping beneath the water several times as he waved his arms to rescuers, before being hoisted to safety.

The man was suffering from shock and hypothermia. He was transported to a hospital in stable condition.

The exact details into how the man made it to the water is under investigation.

Carnival officials say one simply cannot fall overboard, as one would have to climb up onto the tall safety rails before jumping.