A 4-year-old boy in northern California survived a plunge of nearly 250 feet off a cliff onto the ground below last night, reports CBS Local. The unidentified boy has broken bones but somehow escaped life-threatening injuries when he fell from a trail on Bodega Head in Sonoma County. As the Press Democrat of Santa Rosa reports, the boy had been with his parents and another sibling on the trail when his panicked mother suddenly realized he had disappeared.
They called for help, leading to a dramatic dusk rescue. Firefighters rappelled down the cliff, illuminated by the light of flares from a Coast Guard boat in the water, reports AP. Much to the firefighters' surprise, they found the boy on the beach—nobody could see him from above, leading to fears he had been swept out to sea. “The child was conscious and alert, obviously crying which was completely appropriate for the injuries that he had sustained," says a local fire official. (Read more boy stories.)