American Scene: Man survives plunge over Niagara Falls

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BUFFALO — A man plunged at least 180 feet Monday over Niagara Falls and survived - only the third person known to have gone over without a safety device and live.

Police say witnesses reported seeing the man climb over a railing at 10:20 a.m. Monday and “deliberately jump” into the Niagara River 20 to 30 feet above the Horseshoe Falls. He surfaced in the lower Niagara River basin near the Journey Behind the Falls observation platform.

The man, believed to be in his early 40s, was rescued about two hours after he collapsed in waist-deep water near the rocky shore. A waiting helicopter flew him to a hospital for treatment of what police said were life-threatening injuries. Police did not identify him.

Since 1901, when Annie Edson Taylor was the first person known to go over the falls and live, 17 others have replicated the feat, most by using safety devices such as Taylor’s oak barrel or the foamed-lined pickle barrel and inner tube contraption Steve Trotter used to go over in 1985.

Disputed dinosaur fossil auctioned for $1M in NYC

NEW YORK — A fossil of a fearsome Tyrannosaurus rex relative has been auctioned in New York City despite the Mongolian government’s objections and a judge’s order blocking the sale.

Heritage Auctions says the 24-foot-long tarbosaurus skeleton sold for $1,052,500 Sunday. But the sale is contingent on the outcome of the auction house’s court fight with Mongolian President Elbegdorj Tsakhia.

A Texas judge Saturday ordered the sale stopped while the case plays out.

Elbegdorj lawyer Robert Painter said Monday he’ll ask a judge to find the auction house defied the court order. A Heritage spokesman didn’t immediately respond to an email.

OSHA cites builder in collapse that killed 1

NEW YORK — Federal officials say a New York City contractor didn’t ensure a building under construction was stable before it collapsed and killed a worker and hurt four others last fall.

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration cited SP&K Construction Monday with 11 safety violations. The Brooklyn-based company didn’t immediately return phone or email messages.

The company could face more than $77,000 in fines.

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