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Young man hospitalised from fall off Shepton Mallet viaduct scaffolding was "taking a photo of himself"

By fsingleton  |  Posted: February 20, 2014

Young man hospitalised from fall off Shepton Mallet viaduct scaffolding was "taking a photo of himself"

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A YOUNG man who was left seriously injured after he fell from scaffolding in Shepton Mallet last week was “larking around”, said police.

Inspector Mark Nicholson said the man, who was with a friend, had been trying to take a photo of himself at a “silly height” when he plunged as much as 25ft.

The officer urged people contemplating such stunts to think again.

“Once again it’s another extreme,” he said. “People really need to consider what they’re doing – a lot of these things end up on social media.”

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It was the early hours of Thursday morning when ambulance services responded to 999 reports that someone had fallen off scaffolding at the viaduct on Waterloo Road.

A South Western Ambulance Service spokeswoman said: “We were called at 4am – it was reported that a male in his early 20s had fallen from about 15 to 25 feet.

“We sent out an ambulance that arrived at 4.03am.

“The male reported pain pretty much everywhere, but mainly in his neck and back. Because it was trauma related he was taken to Frenchay Major Trauma Centre.”

Mr Nicholson said the young man had been “larking around” trying to take a picture of himself.

He said: “We attended and called an ambulance because a young male had fallen off some scaffolding.

“Initially the friend ran off but came back and told us he was trying to take a picture of himself.

“It’s a big demand on the emergency services that could be used elsewhere.

“People that want to do silly pranks need to take responsibility for their actions.”

The scaffolding company is Hammond.

John Martin, project manager for works on the viaduct, said: “We’re just doing some maintenance to the viaduct. The works will run for 12 weeks, starting from February 3. The road is closed to vehicles but open to pedestrians.”

Mr Martin declined to comment on the incident.

The fall comes as a craze featuring daredevil photographers from Russia has gained international attention.

‘Skywalking’ is the newest extremely dangerous photography fad to hit the internet.

Skywalking involves a photographer making his way up to a death-defying height, and snapping a photo to give the viewer a perspective they have never seen before.

Many of the photographers are in their teens and carry out the stunt without safety equipment.

There have been a number of deaths in Russia and Ukraine among skywalkers, including five teenagers who died in one night when they fell from a height at the Chernobyl nuclear reactor.

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