The ArgusMotorist survives 80ft cliff fall (From The Argus)

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Motorist survives 80ft cliff fall

The Argus: Pic: Newhaven Coastguard Pic: Newhaven Coastguard

A man survived a 80ft cliff fall after his car left the road and plunged into the sea.

The driver was able to get out of the vehicle and make his way to the rocks following the incident in Roedean, near Brighton, which happened shortly after midnight, a spokesman for the Newhaven Coastguard said.

He said the car had "miraculously" managed to clear the undercliff promenade after leaving the A259, landing in the water.

Newhaven Coastguard sent a cliff technician down a ladder supplied by East Sussex Fire and Rescue Service from the promenade to the beach to join firefighters and paramedics who were already with the man.

Sussex Police and the South East Coast Ambulance Service also attended the incident.

The driver, a 33 year old local man, is currently being treated at the Royal Sussex County Hospital in Brighton.

The coastugard spokesman said: "A second ladder was installed to use as a slipway and the casualty was secured into Newhaven Coastguards rescue stretcher and then using some of our cliff rescue equipment we were able to slide the stretcher up the ladders.

"With nine members of various agencies on the three ropes and two of the Newhaven team at the top of the ladder we were able to bring the casualty up from the beach where they were handed into the care of paramedics.

"All the time the recovery operation was ongoing a member of the Brighton lifeboat crew who had swum ashore in a dry suit was inspecting the vehicle to check for any secondary casualties."

Brighton and Newhaven lifeboat crews also made a brief sea search in opposite directions while two coastguard teams searched the beach a few hundred metres each side of the car in case anyone else was in the water.

The spokesman said: "With approximately 22 emergency service workers from various agencies as well as two lifeboat crews this was fantastic team work leading to a swift extraction of the casualty."

Chief Superintendent Nev Kemp tweeted after the incident: "Incredibly a man escaped without serious injury after his car went over the cliff near Roedean just after midnight and ended up in the sea."

The car, a Ford Focus, has now been recovered from the scene and the cause of the crash is still under investigation.

A stretch of the Undercliff Walk remains closed today due to debris still being lodged on the cliff face.

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Comments (27)

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9:06am Sun 13 Apr 14

qm says...

Lucky chap!!! Well done to the rescuers!
Lucky chap!!! Well done to the rescuers! qm
  • Score: 30

10:20am Sun 13 Apr 14

J Hill says...

Close shave for him and a relatively close one for me too as I walked home along the undercliff walk on Friday night. Would have completely freaked me out to see a car fly past!
Close shave for him and a relatively close one for me too as I walked home along the undercliff walk on Friday night. Would have completely freaked me out to see a car fly past! J Hill
  • Score: 8

10:35am Sun 13 Apr 14

andyfm says...

Why feel sorry for this "clown" there is no way a car can just go over the cliff edge by accident!!!!!!
Why feel sorry for this "clown" there is no way a car can just go over the cliff edge by accident!!!!!! andyfm
  • Score: -19

11:25am Sun 13 Apr 14

Man of steel says...

andyfm wrote:
Why feel sorry for this "clown" there is no way a car can just go over the cliff edge by accident!!!!!!
Another idiot jumping on the remote name calling bandwagon.
Is there anything in the news article which implies driver error or drunkeness?
Does it not say that the cause of the crash is still under investigation?
It could well have been mechanical failure, or a punctured tyre that caused the car to go off road.
He may have swerved to avoid an animal or person wondering in the road.
But no, let's second guess the investigation, and blame the driver, clever andyfm, knows it all.
[quote][p][bold]andyfm[/bold] wrote: Why feel sorry for this "clown" there is no way a car can just go over the cliff edge by accident!!!!!![/p][/quote]Another idiot jumping on the remote name calling bandwagon. Is there anything in the news article which implies driver error or drunkeness? Does it not say that the cause of the crash is still under investigation? It could well have been mechanical failure, or a punctured tyre that caused the car to go off road. He may have swerved to avoid an animal or person wondering in the road. But no, let's second guess the investigation, and blame the driver, clever andyfm, knows it all. Man of steel
  • Score: 43

11:42am Sun 13 Apr 14

monkeymoo says...

andyfm wrote:
Why feel sorry for this "clown" there is no way a car can just go over the cliff edge by accident!!!!!!
Such a stupid thing to say.

There are plenty of ways a vehicle can suddenly lock up, or have brake failure, or swerve.

Why not wait for the accident investigation to give the FACTS, and not just guess. More to the point....Don't share your stupid guesses with us!
[quote][p][bold]andyfm[/bold] wrote: Why feel sorry for this "clown" there is no way a car can just go over the cliff edge by accident!!!!!![/p][/quote]Such a stupid thing to say. There are plenty of ways a vehicle can suddenly lock up, or have brake failure, or swerve. Why not wait for the accident investigation to give the FACTS, and not just guess. More to the point....Don't share your stupid guesses with us! monkeymoo
  • Score: 32

12:05pm Sun 13 Apr 14

From beer to uncertainty says...

Glad the chap is OK. Owning a Ford Focus doesn't have to mean it's all over.
Glad the chap is OK. Owning a Ford Focus doesn't have to mean it's all over. From beer to uncertainty
  • Score: 22

12:41pm Sun 13 Apr 14

sussexram40 says...

80 foot cliff fall according to the BBC. The Argus says 100 feet?
80 foot cliff fall according to the BBC. The Argus says 100 feet? sussexram40
  • Score: 0

1:41pm Sun 13 Apr 14

qm says...

sussexram40 wrote:
80 foot cliff fall according to the BBC. The Argus says 100 feet?
80' on the Daily Mail site, good pictures too, well scratched :) just glad he survived without serious injury!
[quote][p][bold]sussexram40[/bold] wrote: 80 foot cliff fall according to the BBC. The Argus says 100 feet?[/p][/quote]80' on the Daily Mail site, good pictures too, well scratched :) just glad he survived without serious injury! qm
  • Score: 5

2:06pm Sun 13 Apr 14

vivahate says...

Dunno about you, but I think the guy from Brighton Lifeboat who swam to the car need a blooming medal.
Dunno about you, but I think the guy from Brighton Lifeboat who swam to the car need a blooming medal. vivahate
  • Score: 33

2:18pm Sun 13 Apr 14

sussexram40 says...

Not really good enough that national print and TV media have big coverage of this story with loads of photos while the local paper, The Argus, has the worst and briefest coverage. Easily the biggest local news story all week and The Argus seeimgly doesn't even send a photographer and a reporter and provide detailed coverage?
Not really good enough that national print and TV media have big coverage of this story with loads of photos while the local paper, The Argus, has the worst and briefest coverage. Easily the biggest local news story all week and The Argus seeimgly doesn't even send a photographer and a reporter and provide detailed coverage? sussexram40
  • Score: 17

2:42pm Sun 13 Apr 14

kentan says...

Same thing happened about 10 years ago in almost the same place. Chap from Saltdean was driving a Skoda ...... he too survived with a few injuries after losing control.

Remember to keep your wits about you when walking on The Undercliff, a dangerous place, several suicide jumpers every year.

Glad to hear this person escaped serious injury.
Same thing happened about 10 years ago in almost the same place. Chap from Saltdean was driving a Skoda ...... he too survived with a few injuries after losing control. Remember to keep your wits about you when walking on The Undercliff, a dangerous place, several suicide jumpers every year. Glad to hear this person escaped serious injury. kentan
  • Score: 3

4:41pm Sun 13 Apr 14

Mr chock says...

sussexram40 wrote:
80 foot cliff fall according to the BBC. The Argus says 100 feet?
well it was a long way .. He said the car had "miraculously" managed to clear the undercliff promenade after leaving the A259, landing in the water.

why was it miraculously ? in " " ? if the driver really was trying to kill himself then i suspect he would have just driven a bit further and not had their seatbelt on
[quote][p][bold]sussexram40[/bold] wrote: 80 foot cliff fall according to the BBC. The Argus says 100 feet?[/p][/quote]well it was a long way .. He said the car had "miraculously" managed to clear the undercliff promenade after leaving the A259, landing in the water. why was it miraculously ? in " " ? if the driver really was trying to kill himself then i suspect he would have just driven a bit further and not had their seatbelt on Mr chock
  • Score: -4

7:14pm Sun 13 Apr 14

Roundbill says...

So, the Argus Motoring Section's review of the Ford Focus.

Negatives:
- poor-quality speakers
- if you lose control of it, it's able to leave the road, drive up and over a high earth bank, across quite a substantial width of turf, and over a cliff before the you have a chance to perform an emergency stop

Positives:
- you will probably survive an 80+ foot drop and walk away uninjured
- body-coloured bumpers at no extra cost
So, the Argus Motoring Section's review of the Ford Focus. Negatives: - poor-quality speakers - if you lose control of it, it's able to leave the road, drive up and over a high earth bank, across quite a substantial width of turf, and over a cliff before the you have a chance to perform an emergency stop Positives: - you will probably survive an 80+ foot drop and walk away uninjured - body-coloured bumpers at no extra cost Roundbill
  • Score: 3

8:12pm Sun 13 Apr 14

richardsussex says...

Was he breathalysed?
Was he breathalysed? richardsussex
  • Score: 0

8:23pm Sun 13 Apr 14

SayingMyBit says...

I've heard people saying it was a blown tyre etc. but I'm sorry. Mechanical malfunction, blowout or whatever. You would have to have been doing some serious speed to leave the road, cover the distance from there to the cliff edge and THEN clear the under cliff walk.

I'm sorry. But if this did not at least part have something to do with the state of the driver or the way/speed he was driving I would be amazed.
I've heard people saying it was a blown tyre etc. but I'm sorry. Mechanical malfunction, blowout or whatever. You would have to have been doing some serious speed to leave the road, cover the distance from there to the cliff edge and THEN clear the under cliff walk. I'm sorry. But if this did not at least part have something to do with the state of the driver or the way/speed he was driving I would be amazed. SayingMyBit
  • Score: 5

10:55pm Sun 13 Apr 14

Eugenius says...

SayingMyBit wrote:
I've heard people saying it was a blown tyre etc. but I'm sorry. Mechanical malfunction, blowout or whatever. You would have to have been doing some serious speed to leave the road, cover the distance from there to the cliff edge and THEN clear the under cliff walk.

I'm sorry. But if this did not at least part have something to do with the state of the driver or the way/speed he was driving I would be amazed.
Crash debris being lodge on the cliff face isn't really compatible with a clean jump to the beach - is it possible he went head first over the cliff, hit one of the nets and then somersaulted on to the beach? Might explain why the car was crushed at both ends. Miraculous escape in any event, I think I would have died from a heart attack.
[quote][p][bold]SayingMyBit[/bold] wrote: I've heard people saying it was a blown tyre etc. but I'm sorry. Mechanical malfunction, blowout or whatever. You would have to have been doing some serious speed to leave the road, cover the distance from there to the cliff edge and THEN clear the under cliff walk. I'm sorry. But if this did not at least part have something to do with the state of the driver or the way/speed he was driving I would be amazed.[/p][/quote]Crash debris being lodge on the cliff face isn't really compatible with a clean jump to the beach - is it possible he went head first over the cliff, hit one of the nets and then somersaulted on to the beach? Might explain why the car was crushed at both ends. Miraculous escape in any event, I think I would have died from a heart attack. Eugenius
  • Score: 0

11:04pm Sun 13 Apr 14

SayingMyBit says...

Eugenius wrote:
SayingMyBit wrote:
I've heard people saying it was a blown tyre etc. but I'm sorry. Mechanical malfunction, blowout or whatever. You would have to have been doing some serious speed to leave the road, cover the distance from there to the cliff edge and THEN clear the under cliff walk.

I'm sorry. But if this did not at least part have something to do with the state of the driver or the way/speed he was driving I would be amazed.
Crash debris being lodge on the cliff face isn't really compatible with a clean jump to the beach - is it possible he went head first over the cliff, hit one of the nets and then somersaulted on to the beach? Might explain why the car was crushed at both ends. Miraculous escape in any event, I think I would have died from a heart attack.
True. I think my chest would be close to bursting too. But I'd like to think instinct would kick in over the distance from the road to the cliff edge and I'd either turn the steering wheel or failing that attempt an emergency stop. I fail to see it possible for every means if this being avoided were unavailable.
[quote][p][bold]Eugenius[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]SayingMyBit[/bold] wrote: I've heard people saying it was a blown tyre etc. but I'm sorry. Mechanical malfunction, blowout or whatever. You would have to have been doing some serious speed to leave the road, cover the distance from there to the cliff edge and THEN clear the under cliff walk. I'm sorry. But if this did not at least part have something to do with the state of the driver or the way/speed he was driving I would be amazed.[/p][/quote]Crash debris being lodge on the cliff face isn't really compatible with a clean jump to the beach - is it possible he went head first over the cliff, hit one of the nets and then somersaulted on to the beach? Might explain why the car was crushed at both ends. Miraculous escape in any event, I think I would have died from a heart attack.[/p][/quote]True. I think my chest would be close to bursting too. But I'd like to think instinct would kick in over the distance from the road to the cliff edge and I'd either turn the steering wheel or failing that attempt an emergency stop. I fail to see it possible for every means if this being avoided were unavailable. SayingMyBit
  • Score: -3

11:34pm Sun 13 Apr 14

tom servo says...

Why is this "Breaking news?" it happened at 8:43 this morning and it's now 11:40 at night.

usual Argus **** up.
Why is this "Breaking news?" it happened at 8:43 this morning and it's now 11:40 at night. usual Argus **** up. tom servo
  • Score: -3

8:01am Mon 14 Apr 14

Eugenius says...

Learnt from the BBC that the debris on the cliff was on account of him driving /flying through the fence at the top and he did land straight in the sea.
Learnt from the BBC that the debris on the cliff was on account of him driving /flying through the fence at the top and he did land straight in the sea. Eugenius
  • Score: 1

8:25am Mon 14 Apr 14

spa301 says...

A very lucky escape and a big well done to the rescuers. One thing that puzzles me is why the rescuers climbed down the cliff and then brought the driver back up the cliff in a secured stretcher. Surely there's a road access to the underwalk just near that spot that rescue vehicles could have used and saved the driver from a further potential risk had he had unseen injuries?
A very lucky escape and a big well done to the rescuers. One thing that puzzles me is why the rescuers climbed down the cliff and then brought the driver back up the cliff in a secured stretcher. Surely there's a road access to the underwalk just near that spot that rescue vehicles could have used and saved the driver from a further potential risk had he had unseen injuries? spa301
  • Score: 2

9:26am Mon 14 Apr 14

spa301 says...

sussexram40 wrote:
Not really good enough that national print and TV media have big coverage of this story with loads of photos while the local paper, The Argus, has the worst and briefest coverage. Easily the biggest local news story all week and The Argus seeimgly doesn't even send a photographer and a reporter and provide detailed coverage?
Totally agree. Baffling lack of interest from the Argus. It seems they prefer to stick to their usual banal and tedious reports, preferably at least 48 hours after the event. Perhaps it's because they're not actually a locally based newspaper.
[quote][p][bold]sussexram40[/bold] wrote: Not really good enough that national print and TV media have big coverage of this story with loads of photos while the local paper, The Argus, has the worst and briefest coverage. Easily the biggest local news story all week and The Argus seeimgly doesn't even send a photographer and a reporter and provide detailed coverage?[/p][/quote]Totally agree. Baffling lack of interest from the Argus. It seems they prefer to stick to their usual banal and tedious reports, preferably at least 48 hours after the event. Perhaps it's because they're not actually a locally based newspaper. spa301
  • Score: 5

2:13pm Mon 14 Apr 14

twosugars says...

spa301 wrote:
A very lucky escape and a big well done to the rescuers. One thing that puzzles me is why the rescuers climbed down the cliff and then brought the driver back up the cliff in a secured stretcher. Surely there's a road access to the underwalk just near that spot that rescue vehicles could have used and saved the driver from a further potential risk had he had unseen injuries?
Maybe it was quicker than waiting for the council to turn up with keys to the barriers to the undercliff?
[quote][p][bold]spa301[/bold] wrote: A very lucky escape and a big well done to the rescuers. One thing that puzzles me is why the rescuers climbed down the cliff and then brought the driver back up the cliff in a secured stretcher. Surely there's a road access to the underwalk just near that spot that rescue vehicles could have used and saved the driver from a further potential risk had he had unseen injuries?[/p][/quote]Maybe it was quicker than waiting for the council to turn up with keys to the barriers to the undercliff? twosugars
  • Score: 2

2:38pm Mon 14 Apr 14

spa301 says...

twosugars wrote:
spa301 wrote:
A very lucky escape and a big well done to the rescuers. One thing that puzzles me is why the rescuers climbed down the cliff and then brought the driver back up the cliff in a secured stretcher. Surely there's a road access to the underwalk just near that spot that rescue vehicles could have used and saved the driver from a further potential risk had he had unseen injuries?
Maybe it was quicker than waiting for the council to turn up with keys to the barriers to the undercliff?
Quite possible but you'd really hope everyone was better organised than that in the case of emergencies?
[quote][p][bold]twosugars[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]spa301[/bold] wrote: A very lucky escape and a big well done to the rescuers. One thing that puzzles me is why the rescuers climbed down the cliff and then brought the driver back up the cliff in a secured stretcher. Surely there's a road access to the underwalk just near that spot that rescue vehicles could have used and saved the driver from a further potential risk had he had unseen injuries?[/p][/quote]Maybe it was quicker than waiting for the council to turn up with keys to the barriers to the undercliff?[/p][/quote]Quite possible but you'd really hope everyone was better organised than that in the case of emergencies? spa301
  • Score: 2

5:28pm Mon 14 Apr 14

Man of steel says...

SayingMyBit wrote:
I've heard people saying it was a blown tyre etc. but I'm sorry. Mechanical malfunction, blowout or whatever. You would have to have been doing some serious speed to leave the road, cover the distance from there to the cliff edge and THEN clear the under cliff walk.

I'm sorry. But if this did not at least part have something to do with the state of the driver or the way/speed he was driving I would be amazed.
The cliff top there is about 30 yards wide, and if he was doing the legal limit of 50mph, he would have been on the grass verge for 1.22 seconds.
And I still cannot understand why people are automatically blaming the driver, there are many times I have been on that bit of road and narrowly missed being shunted onto the grass verge by an idiot cutting in at the last moment to avoid hitting the traffic island.
[quote][p][bold]SayingMyBit[/bold] wrote: I've heard people saying it was a blown tyre etc. but I'm sorry. Mechanical malfunction, blowout or whatever. You would have to have been doing some serious speed to leave the road, cover the distance from there to the cliff edge and THEN clear the under cliff walk. I'm sorry. But if this did not at least part have something to do with the state of the driver or the way/speed he was driving I would be amazed.[/p][/quote]The cliff top there is about 30 yards wide, and if he was doing the legal limit of 50mph, he would have been on the grass verge for 1.22 seconds. And I still cannot understand why people are automatically blaming the driver, there are many times I have been on that bit of road and narrowly missed being shunted onto the grass verge by an idiot cutting in at the last moment to avoid hitting the traffic island. Man of steel
  • Score: 2

12:44am Tue 15 Apr 14

I was there says...

tom servo wrote:
Why is this "Breaking news?" it happened at 8:43 this morning and it's now 11:40 at night.

usual Argus **** up.
It happened just after midnight, Saturday night into Sunday morning and The Argus reported it before 9.am. Now Im not a huge fan of the way the Argus reports things but on this occasion its you that have you fact incorrect.
[quote][p][bold]tom servo[/bold] wrote: Why is this "Breaking news?" it happened at 8:43 this morning and it's now 11:40 at night. usual Argus **** up.[/p][/quote]It happened just after midnight, Saturday night into Sunday morning and The Argus reported it before 9.am. Now Im not a huge fan of the way the Argus reports things but on this occasion its you that have you fact incorrect. I was there
  • Score: -1

12:47am Tue 15 Apr 14

I was there says...

spa301 wrote:
A very lucky escape and a big well done to the rescuers. One thing that puzzles me is why the rescuers climbed down the cliff and then brought the driver back up the cliff in a secured stretcher. Surely there's a road access to the underwalk just near that spot that rescue vehicles could have used and saved the driver from a further potential risk had he had unseen injuries?
The Fire Brigade & Coastguard drove along the undercliff walk but the driver was on the rocks about 15 feet below the prom with no easy way out because the tide was high. They didnt pull the driver up the cliff just 15 feet up to the prom and then handed to paramedics
[quote][p][bold]spa301[/bold] wrote: A very lucky escape and a big well done to the rescuers. One thing that puzzles me is why the rescuers climbed down the cliff and then brought the driver back up the cliff in a secured stretcher. Surely there's a road access to the underwalk just near that spot that rescue vehicles could have used and saved the driver from a further potential risk had he had unseen injuries?[/p][/quote]The Fire Brigade & Coastguard drove along the undercliff walk but the driver was on the rocks about 15 feet below the prom with no easy way out because the tide was high. They didnt pull the driver up the cliff just 15 feet up to the prom and then handed to paramedics I was there
  • Score: 1

8:26am Tue 15 Apr 14

spa301 says...

I was there wrote:
spa301 wrote:
A very lucky escape and a big well done to the rescuers. One thing that puzzles me is why the rescuers climbed down the cliff and then brought the driver back up the cliff in a secured stretcher. Surely there's a road access to the underwalk just near that spot that rescue vehicles could have used and saved the driver from a further potential risk had he had unseen injuries?
The Fire Brigade & Coastguard drove along the undercliff walk but the driver was on the rocks about 15 feet below the prom with no easy way out because the tide was high. They didnt pull the driver up the cliff just 15 feet up to the prom and then handed to paramedics
Thank you. More informative than the Argus.
[quote][p][bold]I was there[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]spa301[/bold] wrote: A very lucky escape and a big well done to the rescuers. One thing that puzzles me is why the rescuers climbed down the cliff and then brought the driver back up the cliff in a secured stretcher. Surely there's a road access to the underwalk just near that spot that rescue vehicles could have used and saved the driver from a further potential risk had he had unseen injuries?[/p][/quote]The Fire Brigade & Coastguard drove along the undercliff walk but the driver was on the rocks about 15 feet below the prom with no easy way out because the tide was high. They didnt pull the driver up the cliff just 15 feet up to the prom and then handed to paramedics[/p][/quote]Thank you. More informative than the Argus. spa301
  • Score: -1

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