A young man ended up badly injured and in hospital after leaping from a bridge into a river.
Danny Misiurak, 28, was swimming with friends in the River Wharfe in Ilkley last Saturday when they decided to jump off a notorious bridge popular for ‘tombstoning’ leaps.
Danny, who stands 6ft 6 tall and weighs 24 stones, had done the jump from the suspension bridge many times in the past but this time it went catastrophically wrong.
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He says he checked the depth of the water before jumping and believes it was about 8ft deep.
However, he says he hit a ‘massive’ hidden boulder as he jumped in feet-first. He couldn’t see the boulder as the water was too murky, he says.
Danny, a father-of-one from Bingley, Bradford, said: “As soon as I hit the bottom, I knew I had broken my leg.
Ilkley’s suspension bridge. It was recently fitted with fences to deter people from jumping off
(Image: Tom Blackwell/Flickr)
“I was very calm with myself and swam sideways to the side by some rocks. I asked a man to help me up and then sat in the water.”
Danny says he was in shock and just remained where he was for around an hour. The freezing cold water made his injured leg feel numb.
He let others know he had broken his leg but says people just carried on jumping off the bridge which left him ‘gobsmacked’.
Danny Misiurak has urged people not to jump off bridges after he was badly injured
He was helped out of the river by two young men and managed to sit down on a towel.
“I could not move my leg. I was in horrible pain.”
An ambulance arrived later and Danny was given painkillers. His sister then took him to hospital.
Danny was X-rayed and taken to surgery. Pins and plates were used to rebuild his shattered ankle. His broken femur was also repaired.
He now wants other people to think twice before jumping into rivers.
“I won’t do it again – it’s life-changing. In hospital, I was in agony and was given morphine.
Danny Misiurak broke his leg and ankle jumping off a bridge over the River Wharfe, Ilkley
“I was training to be a digger driving and I am self-employed. I don’t get sick pay. It’s going to be six weeks to three months off, unpaid.”
Danny is full of regret about his actions that day.
“I do feel a bit silly for doing it. I am 28 now and not a kid anymore. This is the first time this has happened. It came as quite a shock.”
He is also angry at people who have accused him of doing the jump after drinking alcohol. He says he was sober and had done the jump many times before in the past 10 years.
Others falsely accused him of removing fencing at the bridge which had been put up to deter people from jumping off.
“I am not stupid. I made a mistake. Everybody makes mistakes, it is part of life.”
Danny is now facing a long road to recovery and is being helped by his mum. He is back at home and getting around on crutches.
“I’m not sure (about the future). They did a good job with the operation. It will be a long road to recovery.”
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