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Man Survives Plunge Over Niagara's Horseshoe Falls: A Daredevil or Miracle?

On March 11th, 2009, a daring incident occurred at Niagara Falls when a man survived the approximate 180 foot drop. The occurrence was reported by Chief Douglas Kane of the Niagara Parks Police, who claimed it was likely the third such survival in history, with the last recorded case happening roughly six years prior.

Niagara Falls Horseshoe Falls Man Survives Fall Canada Ontario New York USA
Man survived plunge over the Horseshoe Falls

According to witnesses, the dramatic events unfolded around 2:11 p.m. when a man, assumed to be in his mid-thirties, was seen clambering over a barrier and diving into the rapid currents of the Niagara River before being swept over the edge of the renowned Horseshoe Falls.


Eyewitness Konstantine Shatalov stated that the man made no attempt to resist the river's force, and the incident seemed unreal as it happened. Upon surfacing from the base of the falls, the man had been stripped of his clothing by the powerful current.


Despite the combined efforts of various emergency services, the man continually evaded rescue attempts. He was moving in a circular pattern, noted Chief Lee Smith of the Niagara Falls Fire Department, hinting at his refusal of their assistance.


However, after a privately hired helicopter helped maneuver him closer to the shore, a firefighter managed to reach him and pull him to safety. Having been in the frigid river waters for approximately 45 minutes, the man was semi-conscious and displayed symptoms of hypothermia upon rescue.


Paramedics promptly transferred the man to the Greater Niagara Hospital for medical attention. It was revealed that he also sustained a head injury in the harrowing experience. This incident serves as a rare testament to the potent, yet potentially deadly allure of Niagara Falls.

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