May 22nd, 2012
12:03 PM ET

Man survives plunge over Niagara Falls; 2nd attempt reported Tuesday

A man survived a 180-foot plunge over Niagara Falls on Monday, becoming only the fourth person to do so without any protective devices, according to news reports.

The man, who has not been identified, climbed over a retaining wall above the Canadian Horseshoe Falls before jumping into the Niagara River and being swept over the falls, according to a report from CNN affiliate CTV.

Thought to be around 40 years old, the man sustained injuries including several broken ribs, a collapsed lung and gashes to his head and shoulders, according to a report in the Buffalo News.

He was pulled to safety by emergency crews on the Canadian side of the river after collapsing in waist-deep water, according to a report from CNN affiliate WGRZ in Buffalo.

"When I first looked at him, it was quite apparent that he was in a state not only of shock, hypothermia had probably started to set in," Sgt. Chris Gallagher of the Niagara Falls Parks Police told WGRZ.

"He just happened to come down the river into an eddy, and that enabled him to get out. If he had been in the main current, he wouldn't have survived," Niagara Falls, Ont., Fire Department platoon chief Dan Orescanin told the News.

The man was in stable condition at Hamilton General Hospital in Ontario on Tuesday morning, according to a report from the CBC.

On Tuesday morning, New York State Park Police said they'd received a report on a second person going over the falls, this time the American Falls, the Buffalo News reported.

Lt. Patrick Moriarty said they were interviewing witnesses and believe it was a suicide attempt, the News reported.

The man who survived on Monday is only the fourth person to survive a plunge over the Horseshoe Falls, historian Paul Gromosiak told the News.

The others include a 30-year-old Canadian man in 2009, a Michigan man in 2003 and a 7-year-old boy in 1960, according to the news reports.

"There are odds that you will survive, but they're so minuscule that it's impossible to comprehend," Gromosiak told the News. "Out of the thousands who have come here to commit suicide over the years, we have two who did survive."

Monday's incident had not yet been labeled a suicide attempt, according to the reports.

Body of woman swept over falls recovered

Woman swept to death over Niagara Falls

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Filed under: Canada • Niagara Falls
soundoff (193 Responses)
  1. jthomasin

    So what is it a real attempt or was it a suicide attempt? Amazing new perspective if you wanted to commit suicide and survived. Would make a good interview and story.

    May 22, 2012 at 6:08 am | Report abuse |
    • Jacques Strappe, World Famous French Ball Juggler

      No because he'll probably just try again in a month or two.

      May 22, 2012 at 8:54 am | Report abuse |
    • bspurloc

      climbing over the rail... is suicide regardless

      May 22, 2012 at 10:12 am | Report abuse |
  2. sonbo

    NIagra Falls, slowly I turned, step by step, inch by inch

    May 22, 2012 at 6:09 am | Report abuse |
    • wildone

      Woooo! Woooo! Woooo!!

      May 22, 2012 at 6:40 am | Report abuse |
  3. Epidi

    Of course it was a suicide attempt. No one expects to survive going over those falls unless they're in a barrel!

    May 22, 2012 at 6:10 am | Report abuse |
  4. pj77

    What are the odds of surviving a trip over the Falls? 50/50 Either you will or you won't.

    May 22, 2012 at 6:12 am | Report abuse |
    • halfbakedlunatic

      There are three kinds of people in the world, those that are good at statistics and those that aren't.

      May 22, 2012 at 6:50 am | Report abuse |
    • awaysaway

      Two outcomes doesn't imply 50:50 odds.

      May 22, 2012 at 7:40 am | Report abuse |
    • Harley2Horses

      Haha, that's hilarious; that's the same 'statistic' I used, in my defense, when I was asked to go skydiving.

      May 22, 2012 at 7:56 am | Report abuse |
    • LosCar727

      Statistically that is true if you are the first person to do it or are not taking into consideration previous samples.

      May 22, 2012 at 8:01 am | Report abuse |
    • George

      Not the true odds.

      May 22, 2012 at 8:20 am | Report abuse |
    • zrxgrim

      yeah, that's mathematical odds work... BRILLIANT!

      May 22, 2012 at 8:26 am | Report abuse |
    • Jacques Strappe, World Famous French Ball Juggler

      You are the same person that goes out and buys $100 worth of lottery tickets and wins $0.

      May 22, 2012 at 8:55 am | Report abuse |
    • joe

      I don't think you understand how "odds" work..

      May 22, 2012 at 9:47 am | Report abuse |
  5. halfbakedlunatic

    If someone really wants to commit suicide bad enough that they go over niagra falls, the least you could do is hold them under water for a few minutes to make sure the job is done before pulling them out ...

    May 22, 2012 at 6:49 am | Report abuse |
    • Mary

      Where were you when I needed a friend like that?

      May 22, 2012 at 6:56 am | Report abuse |
  6. Thenextstep

    Its jsut to bad he is getting this publicity he DOESN"T deserve......... Stupidity always wins in the media..........

    May 22, 2012 at 7:09 am | Report abuse |
    • yeah

      Yes because his name is plasterd everywhere isn't it

      May 22, 2012 at 4:36 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Natch

    Hopefully, if this WAS a suicide attempt, it will force this man to take another look at his life, and reassess his priorities and problems. Nothing like a near death experience, to make you appreciate life!

    May 22, 2012 at 7:12 am | Report abuse |
    • atljack

      you're right. Stupidity makes you famous... this guy, the Kardashians, Sarah Palin

      May 22, 2012 at 8:00 am | Report abuse |
  8. unowhoitsme

    Glad he survived...uncondolences to the family.

    May 22, 2012 at 7:27 am | Report abuse |
  9. ACBme

    Wow. Just wow. God must not have been done with him yet. Unbelieveable. And interesting too is the fact that "thousands of people come here to commit suicide every year." I never knew that either. Isn't there a guy who's going to tightrope walk across the falls soon? I think I heard he got permission for a date upcoming in June.

    May 22, 2012 at 8:08 am | Report abuse |
  10. Matt

    At least he got pulled in on the Canadian side. He can now invest the money he would have spent on the medical bills in the USA on buying him a good barrel and trying this again.

    May 22, 2012 at 8:17 am | Report abuse |
  11. madmaninthemiddle

    Suppose he tried to kill himself because "I can never do anything right". NOW how does he feel?

    May 22, 2012 at 8:29 am | Report abuse |
  12. across12

    outrageously silly.

    May 22, 2012 at 8:30 am | Report abuse |
  13. JoJo

    I'd rather win the lottery than survive a plunge over Niagara Falls.

    May 22, 2012 at 8:33 am | Report abuse |
    • mark

      only to have your lottery ticket get struck by lightning 😦 🙂 but..it'd be an interesting day for sure

      May 22, 2012 at 9:16 am | Report abuse |
  14. Nathan

    i visit the falls every summer, its very easy to just jump over a little rail and dive in if you want

    May 22, 2012 at 8:34 am | Report abuse |
    • André

      Please do so on your next visit. The world is overpopulated.

      May 22, 2012 at 8:47 am | Report abuse |
    • Mr. Robert

      As easy as jumping into the Iguazú Falls from the Argentine side.

      May 22, 2012 at 8:51 am | Report abuse |
    • Hank A

      I can jump into the kiddie pool if I could only figure out the lock on the gate.

      May 22, 2012 at 9:23 am | Report abuse |
  15. Roberto c

    Why these man who rescu hin did'nt finish hem?

    May 22, 2012 at 8:34 am | Report abuse |
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