Skydiving is one of the scariest, but also most exhilarating, activities you can take part in. Just imagine jumping from a plane, gliding and tumbling through the air, the ground so far below you.
While this experience is meant to give people a pure adeline rush, one thrill-seeking skydiver actually suffered a seizure in midair, and his dramatic rescue was caught on camera.
22-year-old Christopher Jones from Australia was about midway through a skydiving training program when the scary incident occurred in November. After being diagnosed with epilepsy, Jones' dream of one day becoming a pilot was crushed. But this sparked his interest in another form of flying-skydiving.
"I've always wanted to have the feeling of flight, so I just thought considering I can't fly a plane due to my condition, I thought I'd give it a go," Jones said.
He had gone four years without a seizure and WA Skydiving Academy chief instructor Robin O'Neill said that Jones had been a great student. Then during a jump in November with Sheldon McFarlane, the instructor on the dive, Jones began having a seizure during his freefall.
The incident was caught on McFarlane's camera, and the whole thing looks terrifying. Jones jumped from the plane, and at first everything seems fine. After a few seconds, Jones flipped over onto his back and began having a seizure.
It took two attempts, but McFarlane was able to pull his parachute chord. The video then ends there, but Jones gained consciousness at about 3,000 feet and was able to land safely.
According to McFarlane, the parachute would have automatically deployed, but he went to help him after sensing that Jones was in trouble. He did not realize that he was actually having a midair seizure.
"I think I'm fairly lucky, but the emergencies [automatic activation devices] on the chutes work nearly all the time so I think I would have been okay if the jump master hadn't actually caught me," Jones said.
No ambulance was called, and Jones went home safely with his mother.
The skydiving academy requires participants to answer if they have any illnesses such as epilepsy. Jones had a letter from his specialist that claimed he was fit to skydive, but after the seizure, his skydiving career is now over.
O'Neill said that the footage, which has over four million views since being uploaded on YouTube yesterday, looks worse than it really was. Watch it for for yourself below.
[PHOTO CREDIT: Nomadic Adrenaline/YouTube]