'Jumping off a bridge ... is never a good idea'
EUGENE, Ore. -- While a KVAL News camera rolled, a young man climbed the DeFazio Bike Bridge and flipped into the water.
After splashing into the Willamette River, he emerged and walked out of the river. While this man made it out safely, authorities warn against jumping.
"Jumping off a bridge, I would say, is never a good idea and for a whole lot of reasons," said Steve Fandrey, a deputy sheriff with the Lane County Sheriff's Office Marine Patrol.
Those reasons include shallow river beds, hidden dangers under the water's surface and the cold temperature of the water.
Last summer, University of Oregon football player Todd Doxey drowned after jumping from a bridge into the McKenzie River. At the time, responding deputies told KVAL the cold water was too much for the 19-year-old's body to handle.
There are no state or county laws banning someone from jumping into a river from the bridge.
According to Jenna LaBounty, spokeswoman for the Eugene Police Department, it is not illegal to jump from a bridge into the river in the City of Eugene. However, if a posted sign prohibits jumping, it is up to a police officer to determine if they will issue a citation.
The man jumped while meteorologist Seth Wayne delivered his forecast live from the bridge Monday evening. Viewers watching the newscast at home didn't see the man jump because Seth's weather graphics were on screen.