Make us your home page
Instagram

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Man is hospitalized after jumping from Sunshine Skyway

ST. PETERSBURG — A man who had been arguing with his girlfriend in a car jumped off the Sunshine Skyway bridge Thursday night — and survived the fall.

Firefighters aboard a St. Petersburg Fire and Rescue boat rescued the 21-year-old man about 9:30 p.m. He was taken to Bayfront Medical Center, said Lt. Joel Granata, a fire department spokesman.

His name and his condition were not available.

Granata said the man's girlfriend dialed 911 from atop the bridge's center span about 8:40 p.m. She told dispatchers that she and her boyfriend had been arguing while she was driving north over the bridge. He asked her to stop, which she did, Granata said.

The man said something about going to the bathroom and walked away from the car. Then he jumped, Granata said.

The fall from the highest point of the center span is nearly 200 feet. The fall from the very top takes a person to a speed of about 75 mph; the impact with the water occurs in 3.5 seconds.

According to a St. Petersburg Times story from 2009, more than 130 people had died jumping from the bridge since it opened in 1987. About a dozen others had survived the fall.

Granata said rescuers found the man on some rocks below the bridge. He said the man either swam to the rocks or was pushed by the current. Two divers swam to the rocks, put the man in a flotation device and brought him to the rescue vessel, Granata said.

Officials with the Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office, which has jurisdiction over that part of the bridge, confirmed they were investigating a case in which a man who had been with his girlfriend jumped from the bridge and survived.

Man is hospitalized after jumping from Sunshine Skyway 05/05/11 [Last modified: Thursday, May 5, 2011 11:17pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Winner and loser of the week in Florida politics

    Blogs
  2. Jones: Bucs need success to get national respect

    Bucs

    Tampa Bay Times columnist Tom Jones offers up his Two Cents on the world of sports.

    No respect

    Tampa Bay Buccaneers head coach Dirk Koetter walks the field during the second day of mandatory minicamp at One Buccaneer Place in Tampa, Fla., on Wednesday, June 14, 2017. LOREN ELLIOTT   |   Times
  3. Hopes fade after landslide destroys Chinese village (w/video)

    World

    Crews searching through the night in the rubble left by a landslide that buried a mountain village under tons of soil and rocks in southwestern China found 15 bodies, but more than 110 more people remained missing.

    Vehicles and people line a road leading to the site of a landslide in Xinmo village in Mao County on Saturday in southwestern China’s Sichuan Province. More than 100 people remained missing after the village was buried under tons of rocks and soil.
  4. Rookie Jake Faria dissatisfied with performance in Rays' loss to Orioles

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG — The rookie pitcher walked to his locker Saturday after tossing the fourth quality start in as many tries to begin his career. He held the potent Orioles bats to three runs and for six innings gave his team a chance to win.

    Orioles third baseman Manny Machado tags out the Rays’ Mallex Smith at third after a rundown in the first inning.
  5. Thousands converge in two St. Pete locations celebrating LGBT rights

    Human Interest

    ST. PETERSBURG — Tom Rockhill didn't know what to expect Saturday, but by noon people were knocking on the door of his bar Right Around the Corner in Grand Central.

    (From left to right) Emma Chalut 18, gets a rainbow sticker on her cheek from her sister Ellie, 15 both of Jacksonville before the annual St. Pete Pride parade in downtown St. Petersburg on Saturday. This year the route was changed from the Grand Central and Kenwood area to Bayshore Drive.
[EVE EDELHEIT   |   Times]