6 Survive ATV's 700' Fall Off Cliff

Zappa

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http://www.foxnews.com/us/2010/04/0...e-vehicles-foot-plunge-cliff/?test=latestnews

6 People Miraculously Survive Vehicle's 700-Foot Plunge Over Cliff

All-terrain vehicle plummets over a Massachusetts cliff in total darkness, but all passengers live through fall into steep ravine.

Five men and one woman miraculously survived a terrifying plunge when their all-terrain vehicle plummeted over a Massachusetts cliff in total darkness -- sending some of them tumbling as far as 700 feet down into a ravine, the New York Post reported Tuesday.

"I'm glad to be alive," said Kurt Wolfard, 29, of Brooklyn, N.Y., who was visiting friends and family when they decided to take a ride at about 1:30am local (Eastern) time Sunday.

"The trail was rough, of course, because we were going through the forest," he said. "Once we got to the crest of the hill, I don't think the driver realized how far we were over the cliff -- and we went off."

Rescuers said the five-wheel vehicle fell 50 to 75 feet down a sheer cliff face, then tumbled the rest of the way down a steep slope covered in jagged rocks.

The passengers toppled down the mountain with their belongings, trying to grasp at the cliff to break their fall.

"I felt my face and thought it was water or sweat," said Wolfard, who fell just 30 feet.

"It was blood -- gushing out of my head."

He made his way to a friend's house, where he was greeted by rescuers.

"When the police told me that it was a 720-foot drop with gravel slopes, jagged rocks and land so steep that trees don't grow, I couldn't believe I even survived," he said.

All members of the group were rescued within four hours, authorities said. Four were hospitalized, three in serious condition. Wolfard and another man were treated and released.

"I'm very happy to be here," said Wolfard, a married mechanic. "I have a three-year-old daughter to take care of."
Two Questions:

#1. Where in Mass do we have 700' cliffs ?

#2. What kind of ATV has 5 wheels and carries 6 passengers?

 

RichM

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Here's another link with a picture of the slope.

And here's a trail map of Skinner Park... I agree that the fall probably was not 700' vertically, but maybe total distance travelled during the fall was approcimately 700'?

Looking at the trail map. there's only a couple of steep slopes near power lines, and the drop is nowhere near 700'; heck, most of the elevation is around 600', and the valley level is approximately 200' above sea level...

... Reporters are good at fact-checking, aren't they?
 
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The real question is... If they came across a bear at the bottom of the cliff would a .40 be ample to protect themselves?[smile]
#2. What kind of ATV has 5 wheels and carries 6 passengers?
I looked around the web for 5 wheel ATVs the only one I could come up with was a John Deere AMT 600 series (AKA Gator). They where also discussing this story on a Jeep forum and they where assuming it was this vehicle too

Pictures of the John Deere AMT http://www.purchase.umd.edu/ttrader/items/expanded_pages/27048604.htm
 
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That looks to be it...

...Of the all-terrain vehicle she said, "It was a multipurpose vehicle. It had five wheels. The way it has been described to me is that it is a working vehicle that might haul (materials)."

On Monday, it seemed that the ATV in question was likely owned by Billie Lyman. Barbara and Robert Mendoza live adjacent to Lyman and his parents, Robert and Dianna Lyman, on Hadley Street. They said the Lymans owned a large, green John Deere ATV that they often used for hauling brush.

"You could get two people in the front and four in the back
," Robert Mendoza said, speculating how six people could have fit into the vehicle. "It has a dump body in the back, but it would be pretty tight."
http://www.gazettenet.com/2010/04/06/atv-crash-victims-improving


IMHO, they should get billed for the cost of the rescue...

...brought out more than 50 rescue workers from five fire departments...South Hadley Fire District 2 received assistance from South Hadley Fire District 1, the Amherst, Granby and Northampton Fire Departments and the state Department of Conservation and Recreation.
 
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Chris

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It is because of jerks like this that most of the Northeast is closed to off-road use now except by permission on private land.

And yet, the prohibitions have no effect on the jerks, only the people who follow the rules.

Sound familiar?
 
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