33-year old Dutch supermodel Yfke Sturm is fighting for her life after a jet-surfing accident left her with a fractured skull and several spinal injuries.
You’re surely familiar with jet-powered surfboards, those faintly ridiculous sci-fi contraptions you’ve probably seen under the feet of all-round water-sport luminaries such as Kai Lenny and Laird Hamilton. They go very fast and make a high-pitched buzzing sound, imitating the pests they would no doubt resemble if introduced en masse into the line-up.
Yfke Sturm you may not be familiar with, but she’s a high-profile, London-based model who’s walked the catwalk and featured in ads for brands such as Victoria’s Secret, Ralph Lauren, Calvin Klein, Marc Jacobs, Dior, etc. She was jet-surfing in the relatively calm waters off the Italian island of Ischia at the time of the accident. The Daily Mail reports that after falling off her motorised surfboard she attempted to swim to safety, whereupon she became a helpless bunny in the headlights of a fellow jet-surfer. Sturm was rescued by the Italian Coast Guard and airlifted to a hospital in nearby Naples, where she remains in a coma.
UPDATE: Sturm has reportedly woken up from her medically induced coma and is showing signs of improvement. Her condition remains critical, although according to one enlightened Facebook commenter, “couple of months she’ll be alright i heard”.