Natasha Kaplinsky describes trauma of horrific family boating accident: ‘I was incapacitated by tears’

Natasha Kaplinsky has discussed the lasting effects of the terrifying, 'biblical' boating explosion involving her family during a holiday in Corfu last year.

In a new interview with The Times, she recalled how a boat, carrying her entire family, suddenly went up in flames in the middle of the sea.

And in the months following, Natasha admitted she’s struggled to move past the memory of the traumatic day.

She explained, “I was on a burning boat with everybody I loved, my parents, my husband, my children. I couldn’t leave that memory. It wouldn’t leave me.”

Describing how the pain followed her for months, particularly after her daughter suffered severe burns, she said, “I felt it as our fault, we shouldn’t have been on that boat.

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“I couldn’t bear to see our daughter suffering so much. I was incapacitated by tears. I just couldn’t get a grip.”

The former BBC News anchor and Strictly Come Dancing winner also discussed the incident on Loose Women a few weeks ago.

Natasha was overcome with emotion as she recalled her traumatic experience  to Andrea McLean, Coleen Nolan, Brenda Edwards and Jane Moore.

“I will try not to cry,” she told the Loose Women panel as she began her story.  Natasha revealed that a leak in the boat’s fuel pipe caused the explosion, which, she recalled, was “just like a James Bond moment.”

“My daughter Angelica, who was eight at the time, myself and my dad, who doesn’t swim, we were badly burnt at the time and we were all in the water for about 45 minutes before anybody found us, which we now understand to be a blessing in a way because the scars were much less because we were in the water for such a long time.”

The news reader was almost moved to tears when she recounted the injuries suffered by her daughter, most of which she said appear on her face.

“There is nothing worse than being a mum and seeing your child injured,” Natasha told the panel. “I just kept on looking at her and her face, because that’s what was injured for her and her arm, and thinking about her wedding day. It was just one of the moments where you think, ‘I just can’t bear it’.”

The former Strictly winner also revealed that in the difficult year following the accident, both her and her daughter have undergone EMDR (Eye Movement Desensitisation and Reprocessing) treatment, a psychotherapy technique used to alleviate psychological stress, popular in the treatment of psychological trauma suffered by war veterans.

In an inspiring confession to the audience, Natasha revealed that the treatment has helped her to begin to move on from the accident.

She said, “It helped to move the trauma away from the immediacy of what was happening in front of me, where we were on a burning boat… to a bit further away in my mind.

“It’s still very hard to talk about. My daughter is having EMDR at the moment. It is so helpful but a very, very painful process. Hopefully, it will pay off in the long run, we have got to deal with it now,” she said bravely.

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