Parachutists in illicit jump from Brazil skyscraper: report


Two Brazilian parachutists jumped from a 46-story skyscraper in the heart of Sao Paulo, Brazil’s biggest city, this week after slipping past security, Globo news site G1 reported Saturday.

The notoriously dangerous extreme sport known as BASE jumping involves jumping from a fixed object, such as a building or bridge, with parachutes specially designed to open quickly.

Arthur Zanella and Thiago Negao planned their jump for nearly a month before executing it from the Italia building late Wednesday. G1 obtained a video of the plunge Saturday.

The drop lasted 13 seconds, including three seconds of free fall before the parachutes opened.

The pair landed on a major street at 10:30 pm “when traffic is calmer and after having calculated the time when the cars stop” for a red light, Zanella told G1.

The Italia building (Edificio Italia), at 165 meters (541 feet) high, is the second-tallest building in Sao Paulo and one of the trendiest tourist-frequented spots in the city of 12 million people.

Before jumping, the two men had dinner and drank a bottle of wine in the terrace restaurant with panoramic views from the 41st floor of the skyscraper.

Then they went to the men’s room to change into BASE mode.

“We saw right away that people were looking at us because we were wearing jeans, T-shirt and backpack,” Zanella said.

The pair hurried to a stairway leading to the outside of the building to avoid being stopped by security guards.

After their unauthorized jump, they went down into the subway to stow their gear, according to the video images, before celebrating their derring-do at a bar.

The owners of the Italia — which Alain Robert, known as the “French Spiderman,” crawled down and back up in 2008 after eluding security — will decide whether to take legal action against the parachutists, according to G1.

During Rio de Janeiro’s carnival celebration in February, Zanella parachuted into the middle of the dancing stadium Sambadrome to open the performance by the Portela samba school.

© 2016 AFP

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