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New Jersey Woman Survives Leap Off George Washington Bridge

GWB
GWB Photo Credit: CLIFFVIEW PILOT

FORT LEE, N.J. -- A New Jersey woman jumped from the George Washington Bridge and survived Tuesday night -- a rarity in the annals of the span, authorities said.

A boat chartered by New Square EMS that was in the area fished the 25-year-old woman from the Hudson River just north of the bridge's New York City base around 5 p.m. A witness reported seeing the Somerset County woman jump, the Port Authority's Joseph Pengantelo told Daily Voice.

Port Authority police escorted the ambulance to St. Luke's-Roosevelt Hospital, he said.

"She not only wasn't dead," Pentangelo said, "she was conscious when she arrived at the hospital."

Her car was later found in Manhattan.

The last jumper to survive the 212-foot fall from the GWB was Aidan Rawn of Massachusetts, a former Naval Academy water-polo player who took the leap in the summer of 2009.

A jumper of average weight reaches speeds of 55 mph before hitting the water at somewhere under 30,000 pounds of force -- covering the distance in about 2.5 seconds -- experts say.

Several years earlier, a woman was fished out of the water -- alive but with serious injuries. The same went for a man who lived to tell about his leap in 1968.

Then there was the Jersey guy in the 1940s who bet a buddy that he could survive a jump from the iconic span -- which this October celebrates its 85th birthday.

He made it, all right, and collected his money. But he died of his injuries a few days later.

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