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Bungee jumping

Bungee jumping is an activity in which a person jumps off from a very high place (generally of several hundred feet) with a (elastic) cord tied to his/her ankle[?] and the high place so that the person will move up and down without reaching the ground.

The form of bungee most often practised today as a "sport" was first attempted by the Oxford University Dangerous Sports Club, who made an experimental jump from the 75m (245-feet) high Clifton Suspension Bridge in Bristol, England around 1970.

Despite the inherent danger of jumping from a great height, several million jumps have taken place since 1980 successfully attributable to bungee operators rigorously conforming to standards and guidelines governing jumps, such as double checking calculations and fittings for every jump.

Unfortunately accidents in this sport tend to be of the spectacular, bizarre, and terminal variety, and are often caused by negligence; for example stoned jump-master forgetting to attach the bungee cord to the platform. Note (http://www.darwinawards.com/darwin/darwin1997-05): The cord should be elastic, and should be substantially shorter than the height of the bridge. To illustrate how easy it is to overestimate the permissible length of cord, consider the following question:

When the cord reaches its normal length, does one:
  • (a) stop?
  • (b) start to slow?
  • (c) keep getting faster?

The answer, perhaps surprisingly, is (c). One does not even start to slow until the cord has already stretched somewhat.



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