Base jumper's terrifying fall

Last updated 12:06 22/05/2013
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Watch British base jumper's terrified face as his parachute fails to open when he leapt off a 300m-high cliff.

Matthew Gough
FREEFALL: Matthew Gough jumping off the cliff.

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A base jumper's miraculous escape from a 300m-high face plant has been captured on video.

Matthew Gough, 25, survived the fall off a cliff suffering only minor injuries when his parachute failed to open correctly.

According to the Daily Mail, Gough crashed into rocks on the way down and ultimately had his fall broken by sand when he hit the bottom.

Gough, of Lichfield, Staffordshire, filmed the jump at Lake Garda in Italy in April, with a video recorder strapped to his helmet.

He capture the terrifying ordeal, as well as the emotion on his face when he thought he wouldn't survive.

Gough, who had successfully base-jumped more than 180 times, suffered a blood nose, cuts and bruises and some injuries to his knees and ankles. But he was still conscious and able to move when he hit the ground.

He was discharged from hospital after tests and being monitored for seven hours.

Talking to British media, Gough said he took up the more dangerous form of parachuting after he already had more than 700 skydives under his belt.

"I prepared for the jump, everything felt really good," he said.

"Then I performed a 'track', which means you are flying in a forwards direction.

"Everything was going fine and then I pulled the parachute. The problem was the deployment was really slow.

"It comes down to simple bad luck, nothing else. The conditions were fine, the parachute twisted and when it inflated it was facing backwards.

Gough tried to avoid the cliff as best he could, but did not have enough time to sort out his parachute before impact.

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- © Fairfax NZ News

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