Sunday 25 February 2018

Student jumps off London Tower Bridge to try conquer fear of heights - and nearly drowns

Sarah-Jane Murphy

A student who jumped off Tower Bridge in London in a bid to rid himself of his fear of heights said he feels lucky to be alive.

Shah Faisal Shinwari (17), a renowned You Tube video blogger with nearly 30,000 subscribers, has warned people not to undertake foolish stunts in order to attract internet hits.

In the video, Shinwari is seen teetering on the edge of the bridge.

He performs an imperfect dive and clumsily tumbles into the River Thames.

The student is quickly carried downstream, evidently struggling to swim against the strong current.

The video then cuts to Shinwari lying on the river bank, being treated by medical staff following his rescue by the RNLI.

He speaks to the camera, saying it was "the most stupid thing he has ever done."

Shinwari wrote on You Tube that the stunt was a dare from one of his followers, and resulted in him swallowing lots of dirty water and fearing for his life when he couldn't swim against the tide.

The RNLI have strongly discouraged members of the public from copying Shinwari.

They said they were very disappointed the young man chose to risk his life in this way.

"We would strongly discourage anyone from doing anything like this.

"Jumping into the Thames from a bridge is extremely dangerous.

"The shock of cold water can make it very difficult to swim and strong currents can rapidly sweep people away," they said

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