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. Geri

    I hope this guy gets some help.... he needs it!

    May 22, 2012 at 2:57 pm | Report abuse |
  2. snowdogg

    Having been to Niagara Falls – all I can say is "Wow, was he lucky"!

    May 22, 2012 at 2:57 pm | Report abuse |
  3. Lucy

    I was just there that day!!

    May 22, 2012 at 3:06 pm | Report abuse |
    • Arlotta

      Why didn't you save him, you heartless coward?

      May 22, 2012 at 4:25 pm | Report abuse |
  4. thescarletnumbers

    wow. That must have hurt.

    May 22, 2012 at 3:45 pm | Report abuse |
    • They suck at hockey too

      Another feeble cry for help from a Canadian loser who failed to observe that there's a big pool at the bottom of Horseshow, and a bunch of jagged rocks at the bottom of American falls. If you want to kill yourself, go over American falls.

      May 22, 2012 at 4:28 pm | Report abuse |
  5. CNN Gal

    There an idiot born every minute in this country and grow up to do this.

    May 22, 2012 at 3:46 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Holdupaminute

    Obviously healthcare providers are not a top concern for somebody who chooses to plunge over Niagra Falls! But if it were me, I'd try to wash up on the Canadian side for my medical needs.

    May 22, 2012 at 3:50 pm | Report abuse |
    • danishdude33

      Cover health care if you're uninsured on the American side? The only thing they'll cover you with is a sheet...

      May 22, 2012 at 4:45 pm | Report abuse |
  7. plush

    bet he can't do that twice.

    May 22, 2012 at 4:05 pm | Report abuse |
  8. angala

    oh my god i cant belevive he did that why did he want ot commit suaside who would do that what caused him to do that i want to learn more about why he did this and what he thought would make him do this he is a very lucky man to survive this tradegey i feel so sorry for him

    May 22, 2012 at 4:11 pm | Report abuse |
    • Brian

      I'd call it a run-on sentence, but there wasn't even a single period. It reads like a the rantings of a hyper-active toddler who only paused at the end because she collapsed from lack of oxygen.

      May 22, 2012 at 7:08 pm | Report abuse |
    • Lindsay

      Yes, and don't take God's name in vain.

      May 22, 2012 at 8:03 pm | Report abuse |
  9. heyheyhey

    Ouch maybe he will think twice before he tries again. This is his wake up call I think. They should have let him sit down there a while to think about it. He needs some serious intervention. Obviously he would have told them to go away if he wanted to die.

    May 22, 2012 at 4:20 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Silly

    Nothing like being such a screw up that you can't even kill yourself!

    May 22, 2012 at 4:53 pm | Report abuse |
    • Gomez the Gipsy Guy


      May 22, 2012 at 7:44 pm | Report abuse |
    • tommytee


      May 22, 2012 at 8:09 pm | Report abuse |
  11. Yikes

    There is a video on Youtube of a guy who jumped into the water initially wanting to commit suicide but he then changed his mind. At one point he is standing, more like tottering, about a foot from the edge of the falls – how he was able to do that with the strong current is beyond me, especially since it was winter and the water must have been freezing. Then a chopper tries to rescue him. I'll stop there – I don't want to ruin it for those that want to watch. It is hair-raising.

    May 22, 2012 at 4:53 pm | Report abuse |
    • Yikes

      Ok, seems like I can't post the youtube link so you can search "the niagra almost fall" spelled like that.

      Eeee – gives me the heebie jeebies.

      May 22, 2012 at 5:13 pm | Report abuse |
  12. mary

    Well if its money woes that sent him over the falls..Those will be over now when he gets paid for interviews.~!

    May 22, 2012 at 4:57 pm | Report abuse |
  13. C.

    I've always wondered why there isn't a cable strung across at the edge of the falls.. Somthing a person could grab or a boat would get stopped by.. I think even those that do what this man did. Might change his mind.. But there is no way to stop once your in..
    A cable seems logical.. I also heard the very edge of the falls is actually shallow..Its just such a massive amount of water that a person cant fight it.. So why not a perm. cable?
    If its the debri's that might get caught.. A cable that can be adjusted from the bank would solve that problem..

    May 22, 2012 at 5:04 pm | Report abuse |
    • puzzled

      Way to think outside the box!It can't happen as it would totally ruin the view..

      May 22, 2012 at 7:25 pm | Report abuse |
  14. BlackLabsRule

    ...step by step; inch by inch...

    May 22, 2012 at 5:05 pm | Report abuse |

    I hope he gets the mental help he obviously needs.

    May 22, 2012 at 5:33 pm | Report abuse |
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