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. jennygirl

    doesn't sound as if he meant to survive.

    May 22, 2012 at 9:43 am | Report abuse |
  2. Shneeky

    Very disappointed he must be. My condolences to your failed attempt.

    May 22, 2012 at 9:51 am | Report abuse |
  3. fangpi

    Just wondering.... has anyone ever succeeded at ASCENDING the falls, i.e., climbing the rock face behind the water using pitons or whatever?

    May 22, 2012 at 9:53 am | Report abuse |
  4. Ed

    He will really be depressed now – can't even get killing himself right!!!!

    May 22, 2012 at 9:59 am | Report abuse |
  5. tcp

    Who are you?

    May 22, 2012 at 10:06 am | Report abuse |
  6. Proteus

    He wanted to one-up the dude who surfed the gnarly 78-footer off of Portugal. Winning!

    May 22, 2012 at 10:07 am | Report abuse |
  7. bspurloc

    too scared to go over on the American side eh.... cuz landing on rocks certainly hurts more!

    May 22, 2012 at 10:10 am | Report abuse |
  8. You have the right to remain silent...

    "... climbed over a retaining wall above the Canadian Horseshoe Falls before jumping into the Niagara River... "

    Hopefully medical procedures will take place that prevent this bozo from breeding.

    May 22, 2012 at 10:13 am | Report abuse |
  9. Rich

    That's me in the picture walking up the hill in the white top. Famous!

    May 22, 2012 at 10:13 am | Report abuse |
  10. Alan K

    "...climbed over a retaining wall above the Canadian Horseshoe Falls before jumping into the Niagara River".

    If the guy went there to jump... why expend the resources to pull him to safety?

    May 22, 2012 at 10:18 am | Report abuse |
  11. me again


    May 22, 2012 at 10:19 am | Report abuse |
  12. rufus

    I hear he would have looked like Obama's brother, if he had had one.

    May 22, 2012 at 10:22 am | Report abuse |
    • Silver Back

      I heard he's been identified as Rufus

      May 22, 2012 at 10:38 am | Report abuse |
  13. larry

    2 Canadian stabbed in Atlantic City.
    Warning to tourists from all over the world: Obama has started a race war and you are not safe to travel in the USA.

    May 22, 2012 at 10:31 am | Report abuse |
    • warning #2

      The war was actually declared agains all "Larrys". Moes and Curlys left unharmed.

      May 22, 2012 at 10:36 am | Report abuse |
    • Birfday Boy

      Canadian isn't a race.

      May 22, 2012 at 11:07 am | Report abuse |
    • Not just US

      Luke Fitzpatrick was watching a soccer game with his Dad in a north London pub when he was drug out by a pack of twenty afro Brits and stabbed to death yesterday. It’s not just a USA problem. It’s a wherever they are problem.

      May 22, 2012 at 12:03 pm | Report abuse |
  14. gunner

    sick republican humor no doubt

    May 22, 2012 at 10:31 am | Report abuse |
  15. Lean6

    If this guy thought he was a loser before, how can he possibly feel after failing at a statistically fail-proof suicide attempt? Sounds like the only details that would make this story the lowest of the low would be to find out that he's now a quadraplegic, or that he'll have a lifetime time of seizures or something.

    May 22, 2012 at 10:32 am | Report abuse |
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