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## Bungee Jumping Deaths in South Africa

Bungee jumping is an extreme sport that involves jumping from a tall structure while attached to an elastic cord. The cord stretches as the jumper falls, slowing them down and eventually bringing them to a stop before they hit the ground.

Bungee jumping is generally considered to be a safe sport, but there have been a number of fatal accidents over the years. In South Africa, there have been three confirmed bungee jumping deaths since the sport was first introduced in the country in the early 1990s.

The most recent bungee jumping death in South Africa occurred in August 2022. A 21-year-old woman plunged to her death at the Bloukrans Bridge – the world’s highest commercial bungee jumping bridge. The woman was part of a group of tourists who were jumping from the bridge. She fell approximately 200 meters (656 feet) and was killed instantly.

The South African Police Service (SAPS) is investigating the incident, but no details have been released about what may have caused the woman’s fall.

The other two bungee jumping deaths in South Africa occurred in:

* 1992: A 23-year-old man died after jumping from the Oribi Gorge – the second highest commercial bungee jumping bridge in the world. The man’s cord snapped during the jump and he fell approximately 100 meters (328 feet) to his death.
* 2001: A 33-year-old man died after jumping from the Graskop Gorge – the third highest commercial bungee jumping bridge in the world. The man’s cord was too short and he hit the ground before the cord could fully stretch.

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## Causes of Bungee Jumping Deaths

There are a number of factors that can contribute to bungee jumping deaths, including:

* **Equipment failure:** Bungee jumping equipment is designed to be durable and safe, but it is still possible for it to fail. For example, the cord may snap or the harness may break.
* **Operator error:** Bungee jumping operators are responsible for ensuring that the equipment is safe and that the jump is performed safely. Errors by the operator, such as not properly attaching the jumper to the cord or not properly setting the bungee, can lead to accidents.
* **Jumper error:** Jumpers are responsible for following the instructions of the operator and for taking reasonable precautions to ensure their own safety. For example, jumpers should not jump if they are under the influence of alcohol or drugs or if they have certain medical conditions.

## Prevention of Bungee Jumping Deaths

There are a number of steps that can be taken to prevent bungee jumping deaths, including:

* **Regular equipment inspections:** Bungee jumping equipment should be inspected regularly to ensure that it is in good condition and free of defects.
* **Proper operator training:** Bungee jumping operators should be properly trained and certified to ensure that they are competent to operate the equipment and to supervise jumpers.
* **Jumper education:** Jumpers should be provided with comprehensive instructions on how to safely bungee jump. Jumpers should also be aware of the risks involved in the sport and should take reasonable precautions to ensure their own safety.

## Conclusion

Bungee jumping is a safe sport, but it is not without risks. A number of factors can contribute to bungee jumping deaths, including equipment failure, operator error, and jumper error. By taking steps to prevent these accidents, we can help to ensure that bungee jumping remains a safe and enjoyable sport.

### Additional Information

* The Bloukrans Bridge is the highest commercial bungee jumping bridge in the world, with a drop of 216 meters (709 feet).
* The Oribi Gorge is the second highest commercial bungee jumping bridge in the world, with a drop of 169 meters (554 feet).
* The Graskop Gorge is the third highest commercial bungee jumping bridge in the world, with a drop of 111 meters (364 feet).

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