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BASE jumper arrested after chute snags on tree

9:53 AM, Sep 18, 2012   |    comments
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  • "No jumping" sign posted below Foresthill Bridge in Placer County
  • Raymond Alexander Arrieta
    

PLACER COUNTY, CA - A BASE jumper who spent five hours suspended from a tree below the Foresthill Bridge was booked into Placer County Jail on misdemeanor charges.

Cal Fire dispatchers took the emergency call at 8:55 p.m. Monday from a friend of the jumper.

Raymond Alexander Arrieta, 26, was dangling from a pine tree about 100 feet above the American River Canyon.

At 731 feet above the American River North Fork, the Foresthill Bridge is the tallest bridge in California, and the fourth tallest in the United States.

Cal Fire used a bulldozer to widen an access road and brought in a PG&E boom truck to rescue Arrieta around 2:15 Thursday morning.

Cal Fire Battalion Chief Jeff Brand said the parachute harness was tight and uncomfortable for the jumper, but that Arrieta was otherwise unhurt.

Arrieta was booked into the Placer County Jail on $2,000 bail after being taken to a local hospital for precautionary observation.

BASE jumping involves using a parachute to jump from stationary objects, specifically buildings, antennas, spans and Earth.

Rescuers said a helicopter wasn't used because of fear the wash from the rotor blades might have caused the branches to break and the jumper to fall.

Brand estimated the rescue costs to be in the thousands, which could be billed by local law enforcement. 

Last year another BASE jumper made a failed attempt from the same bridge and was rescued from a tree by a helicopter.

News10/KXTV

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