Has anyone ever fallen from an Airplane and survived.

Has anyone ever fallen from an Airplane (flying at say +1000 feet) and survived? Can you show sites/cites? I’ve heard stories of tails of airplanes breaking off and people surviving, and of course mainy stories that end:

“… and though the ‘schute didn’t open, he landed in really really deep mud, he broke every bone in his body, but he survived.

Again, heard these a lot, but do any of these Urban legends have a basis in fact?

I can’t remember where I saw it,but read something about a Russian WW 2 pilot who rammed a German plane and fell thousands of feet,landing in a hay stack and lived.

This guy suvived from 3200 ft. He jumped though, don’t think you’ll find many who actually fell.:wink:


All others on board perished.

I saw it with my own eyes. There was a demonstration of precision skydiving. One of the divers had a faulty chute that did not open. I saw him fall with my own eyes. In the paper the next day I read that he had fallen through an aluminum garage roof. He broke his leg, but was otherwise fine.

From Chuteless Jumps:

There have been a lot that “Plummered” in the military that have survived but I can find no cites. I saw two in 1964 at Ft Campell and my son “streamered” in in 1992 I think it was and only hurt his back. Which is now coming back to haunt him. He saw several ‘walk-a -ways’ while actively jumping. I don’t think the Army wants all that stuff to go public though. :wink:

A friend of mine in the Canadian Forces survived a streaming parachute. THe first chute was defective, and he popped his reserve chute before cutting away the first one and it tangled together with it.

He landed almost flat on his back (The best way, apparently), in a freshly ploughed field. Broke his back, several ribs, both legs. He was in the hospital for weeks, but made a full recovery.

Reeder quoted the world record–the person to survive a fall from the greatest height. As mentioned in his post, it was greater than 33,000 feet.

I was always curious just what kind of survival she had; thanks for the info, Reeder. I figured she had to be severely injured, and also wondered if her survival was only technical; that perhaps she died a few days later, etc. Wow. You wonder what the mechanics were of her fall and landing that protected her from being reduced to dust. Heck, you figure she fell the distance of 300 World Trade Centers, stacked end on end.

Shit! I mean…wowzers!

Yeah, but after the first thousand or so feet you’re going as fast as you’re ever going to go. All those falls would be more or less the same past that point; I’m thinking where and how you land is the most critical element then.

Here is a site with the two free-fall survivors Johnny L.A.'s site mentions, plus one more. Other pages on this site list survivors of falls with tangled main and reserve chutes and of falls (like Vusovic’s) in which parts of an aircraft were ‘ridden’ down. And my favorite page, Unplanned Freefall? Some Survival Tips. Yes, you too can cheat the Grim Reaper! :smiley:

Slight correction – that should be “30 World Trade Centers.” But it’s still impressive.

Absolutely correct. Me and my mental math. :rolleyes: I even mentally checked it…next time, I need to verify with a calculator.

Hey, it’s a Sunday!

I’ve read of many similar stories over the years. There is a web site somewhere (maybe no longer in existance) that had made a video of sorts of a guy falling out of a bomber in WWII, and basically showed him screaming the whole way down. Probably not realistic, but the point was to show just how far down he fell and how darn long it took. I saw this on tech tv and don’t remember the URL, sorry.

There was another story (possibly in Reader’s Digest?) about a woman who was in a passenger plane that broke apart in mid air (can’t remember the cause). She fell, still buckled in her seat, and survived only because she landed in whatever rain forest they were flying over at the time. She suffered a lot of cuts and bruises, but was able to basically walk out of the rain forest. Bugs laid eggs into her cuts which then later hatched, and she had an otherwise quite miserable time, but managed to survive.

Can’t find a site, but I believe it was in a Reader’s Digest that I read at my mother’s house within the last few years.

I searched google, but this time google was not my friend. Oh well.

Further searching found this:


“One of the men who was pushing supplies out of the plane at an air drop fell out of the plane without a parachute, but miraculously he was able to save himself by clinging on to a bale as it came down on its parachute!”

My ex-landlord (and family friend) jumped 1000 feet, out of the back of a Hurcules over the sea (in the 1970’s I guess, by his age).

His first chute knotted up and he wasted valuable seconds trying to untie it - got his hand on the reserve cord when he hit and the reserve opened up underwater. The harnesses did severe damage to his legs and arms and he was critical for weeks and spent some time (I don’t know how much) in hospital - he made a complete recovery however and went on to become captian of the Red Arrows (RAF stunt pilots).