Twin Falls, Idaho • A pair of BASE jumpers survived a 486-foot fall in southern Idaho Monday evening when their parachutes failed to fully open.
The men were seriously injured after leaping from Perrine Bridge in Twin Falls, Idaho, Twin Falls County Sheriff’s Office spokeswoman Lori Stewart said. The bridge spans the Snake River canyon.
The Twin Falls Times-News reports James E. Rawe, 24, of Draper, was taken by ambulance to St. Luke’s Magic Valley Medical Center. The other man, whose name has not been released, was airlifted to Saint Alphonsus Regional Medical Center in Boise with life-threatening injuries.
Witnesses to the failed jump say one man was standing on the other’s shoulders, when the jumper on the bottom apparently leapt too soon from a bridge railing. The top man hit his legs on the railing, sending the pair into a spin that tangled their parachutes and sent them plummeting to the canyon floor.
The men hit the ground near the edge of the water, the witnesses said.
First-responders were able to reach the pair using search-and-rescue boats as a crowd of spectators gathered on the canyon rim to watch.
The botched jump came the same day a BASE jumper was found dead at the bottom of a cliff in Utah’s Zion National Park. Another man was killed Friday in a failed BASE jump attempt near Moab.
BASE jumping is a popular sport involving participants who jump from cliffs, buildings or bridges, using a parachute to break their fall.
Some areas —including Zion National Park — ban the sport outright. But it’s still legal to jump from Perrine Bridge, a feature that draws scores of adventure-seekers to southern Idaho every year.
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