Falling Over 33,000 Feet Without Parachute

Grace Higgins | January 9th, 2019

A Serbian flight attendant called Vesna Vulovic holds quite an incredible world record: surviving the highest fall without a parachute. In 1972, she was able to survive a fall of 33,330 feet which is 10,160 meters after being flown from her crashing plane.


Bruno Honke was the first person on the scene of the plane crash and he instantly believed there were no survivors, it was a complete carnage: metal and fires burning everywhere. Yet he heard someone screaming in the middle of the wreck, he found Vesna in her flight attendant outfit.

Vesna loved to travel and as result became a flight attendant, but there was one problem: she had a history of low blood pressure something that can be a problem if you are always up in high altitudes. So just before the blood test, she drank several cups of coffee to cheat the test, and it worked!

Working for the largest airlines in Yugoslavia at the time, Vesna was working on a flight from Denmark to Belgrade. Just under an hour into the flight, disaster struck, an explosion in the baggage area caused the plane to break apart. Suddenly they were all in free fall, yet only Vesna out of the 28 people survived. Luckily for her Bruno had been a medic in World War II and was able to keep her alive until the rescuers arrived.

Her injuries were extreme and no one expected her to live, nearly every bone was broken & her brain was bleeding from the inside. Yet after a coma and 10 months of recovery Vesna was walking again. And guess what? The very thing she had feared kept here alive: Vesna’s low blood pressure meant that her heart did not explode when she impacted the hillside.

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