Woman who dropped from 360 feet after bungee cord snapped said she'd joked about her death the day before
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When people say they've done a bungee jump or skydive, it sounds amazing.
A bolt of jealousy shoots through you as they tell you all about their life-changing experience, and you ask yourself, 'Why am I not doing that?' Well, my friends, may I introduce you to Erin Langworthy.
Back in 2012, she was out travelling in Zambia when she decided to take a leap from a bridge 360 feet above the Zambezi river at Victoria Falls.
And unlike the videos you often see on Instagram, where someone gracefully swan dives off the platform and down towards the water below, only to bounce straight back up, Erin kept on going.
Her rope snapped and she went plummeting into the river.
Speaking to the Guardian about her ordeal, Erin said she'd actually joked about dying the day before.
She said: "I felt nervous, but never thought anything could go wrong. I was the 105th person to jump that day. I stood on the platform, looked at my ankles, which had been strapped together, and worried aloud that my feet would slip out. Someone said that would be the last thing that happened.
"Before I jumped I thought, 'What am I doing throwing myself off a perfectly good bridge?' "But I was caught up in the moment, and simply spread my arms and fell forwards. Everything sped by in a blue-green blur. The rush was amazing.
"After a few seconds, I felt a jolt across my chest. It seemed as if I slowed down for a second, then sped up. Then I felt myself hit the water – that's when I realised something had gone wrong."
It turned out that the rope had snapped at the very top, with footage shared online showing the moment she jumped from the bridge and bungee tearing.
Erin fell about 40 metres, crashing into the water below. And while it broke her fall, the the ordeal wasn't over yet.
She recalled: "The sound of bubbles was so loud. I felt as if I had been slapped all over. My hands had stopped me hitting the water headfirst and blacking out. My lungs were on fire and I was struggling to breathe.
"That morning, I had seen crocodiles in the water, but I couldn't think about that.
"The bungee cord had snapped near the top, so I still had about 30m attached to me, which kept getting caught."
Erin was pulled downstream, and at one point became trapped below the surface.
Eventually, however, someone from the bungee company managed to get to her and grabbed hold of her harness.
She said: "I started coughing up blood and began to worry about internal injuries. I felt exhausted and struggled to process what had happened.
"I jumped at 5.30pm and didn't get to hospital in Victoria Falls until 11pm. I was put on a ventilator, and needed an ultrasound and to see a lung specialist.
"They gave me a large dose of antibiotics – the doctors were worried about how much dirty water I had ingested. X-rays showed no broken bones, but my lungs had partially collapsed.
Adding: "The guys from the bungee company visited me in hospital. They were very apologetic and astounded I'd survived."
Following the accident, Erin called her mum.
She said: "I'd sent her a postcard the day before, saying, "I'm doing a bungee jump tomorrow, so I'll say goodbye… only joking!" which she now keeps on the fridge. She's adamant I'll never do another, but I'm not so sure."
Featured Image Credit: Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade/YouTube