27 Aug, 2010 @ 09:45
1 min read

Leap of madness

TO British holidaymakers it’s just the latest daredevil stunt.

But with four dead and more than 30 serious accidents in just two months, the dangerous craze of jumping from balconies into the hotel pool is getting completely out of control.

So serious is the problem that the emergency services have been forced to issue a warning over the lethal stunt, being fuelled by reckless teenage holidaymakers, mostly from the UK.

‘Balconing’ – as it has been dubbed – is a growing problem in Spanish resorts, with the number of accidents already triple that of previous summers.

And in the space of just 12 crazy hours, the emergency services had to rush three people to hospital after three different jumps.

Most of the victims are young Brits, although the craze is also popular with Spaniards and Germans.

Internet video site YouTube has come under fire after countless clips of people leaping from balconies were uploaded in recent months.

According to a hotel receptionist in Alcudia, Mallorca, groups of drunken youngsters return after a night out and try to keep the party going by taking part in the deadly stunt.

“This year it has become a real plague,” she said.

According to Sebastian Darder, a spokesman for the Balearic Islands’ hoteliers’ association, all reported incidents of balconing were the result of drunkenness.

Now the emergency services have issued a warning in an attempt to clamp down on the craze and many hotel owners in the Balearic Islands have increased the height of the railings to try to deter it.

But the problem persists and the authorities are resigned to the fact that there is no way to stop it.

As one Majorcan policeman explained: “When the year’s first holidaymaker has fallen from a balcony, we know the summer has started.”

Jon Clarke (Publisher & Editor)

Jon Clarke is a Londoner who worked at the Daily Mail and Mail on Sunday as an investigative journalist before moving permanently to Spain in 2003 where he helped set up the Olive Press. He is the author of three books; Costa Killer, Dining Secrets of Andalucia and My Search for Madeleine.

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  1. I guess this makes tham candidates for The Darwin Awards.
    The Darwin Awards commemorate those who improve our gene pool by (accidentally) removing themselves from it. The Award is generally bestowed posthumously.

  2. Dear oh dear! This is old hat. Members of Air Malawi were doing this from the windows of the Gatwick Post House long before we ceased the Blantyre – London run in 1979. Mind you, they were aircrew so could fly to their pool destination …. and this they did with no injuries …. fortunately.

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