Heart-stopping footage has captured the moment a BASE jumper’s parachute failed to open as he leapt off a cliff near Dover. An onlooker watched the horror unfold in front of him and feared the worst before he looked over the cliff edge and saw the man moving and groaning in pain
The man, who was part of a trio taking part in the extreme sport, plummeted straight to the bottom of the cliff – around 350 feet high – in the area of St Margaret’s Bay.
Just seconds earlier the man, dressed in all black with a bright orange helmet, was captured on camera going to the cliff edge and taking one last glance at the bottom.
He can then be seen running and taking the daring leap off the edge armed with the yellow parachute which fails to deploy.
Shocked witness Gavin Walker watched the horror unfold in front of him, which was followed by shouts of ‘call an ambulance, call an ambulance.’
The man was found conscious and breathing and flown by an air ambulance to hospital, however it is not yet known what injuries he suffered.
Gavin, 28, and his friend Troy had been walking along the cliffs just before midday before they planned to head to a pub on the beachfront for a burger when they came across the three men.
Two of them were in parachute gear and helmets and another man was standing with a camera. They watched as the men carried out checks before they prepared to jump off the famous cliffs.
Gavin, from Whitstable, told Mirror Online: “We thought ‘nah they are not going to jump’.
“I’d never seen anyone base jump before and it’s not something you see every day, so we started speaking to them and asked if we could film it.
“I thought this is quite mental but they had all the gear and knew what they were doing.
“The man – who looked like he was in his mid 30s – did one more look over the cliff, ran and jumped.
“You could instantly tell it looked wrong. It was a strange couple of seconds and you could see it wasn’t right.
“The parachute didn’t deploy and you heard a quick whoosh.
“You think the worst and I thought ‘did I just film something dying?’.
“He hit the floor within seconds. He didn’t roll halfway down he went straight to the bottom. He landed near some boulders, just missing them.
“His two friends wouldn’t look over the cliff edge and just froze. They then shouted ‘call an ambulance’. One of them took their kit off and was pegging it down there.
“I looked over and could see him moving and could hear him. He sat upright then laid himself down and was groaning a bit.
“Within five minutes a first aid responder was there.
“Within 10 minutes an ambulance, police, fire service, air ambulance and cliff side rescue were there. There were about 12 to 13 vehicles and a helicopter.”
Gavin, who works at a social emotional and health school, didn’t leave the scene until he knew the man was conscious.
He added: “I’ve heard he is in a stable condition.
The mate videoing said something about the man’s parachute being around his arm.
“It was just three mates doing their hobby which went wrong.”
A South East Coast Ambulance Service spokesman said: “The patient was found conscious and breathing and has been flown by the air ambulance to Kings College Hospital in London for treatment.”