Man Survives Plunge Over Niagara Falls

By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 11, 2009 8:01 PM CDT
Niagara Falls, in an undated file photo.   (Flickr)
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(Newser) – A man in his late 30s survived a plunge over the Niagara Falls today, the Buffalo News reports. The man jumped into the rapids of the Niagara River, got swept over the 167-foot falls, and somehow stayed afloat in the frigid water below for 40 minutes until being rescued. He is only the third person known to have survived such a plunge without a barrel, and he's being treated for a head injury and hypothermia.

The force of the water apparently stripped him of his clothes on the way down. He did not cooperate with a helicopter rescue, either because he was unwilling or unable, the News notes. The chopper did manage to shoo him closer to shore, however, and a firefighter swam out 50 yards to get him. "It's amazing," said the fire chief.