A trespasser was thrown “several metres into the air” after trying to “kiss” a powerful and forbidden water fountain in Geneva.
The unnamed man, said to be in his 20s, clambered over the safety barriers of the Jet d’Eau at around 8pm on Monday – dubbed one of the Swiss city’s most famous landmarks which illuminates at night.
He proceeded to place his face on the fountain, and then grabbed hold of the water column, which in turn catapulted him into the sky, before falling back onto the slab.
After picking himself up, the man is reported to have jumped into the Lake Geneva, but the ordeal sparked concern from witnesses who raised the alarm.
The fountain omits 500 litres of water a second, the operator says, which emerges at a speed of 124mph. The Jet d’Eau has been a tourist attraction in Geneva for more than 130 years and is one of the tallest in the world.
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One witness said: “The officers came to ask the Jet d’Eau to be cut off as a matter of urgency so that they could go and get him.”
“They rescued him and hoisted him into the boat,” said Aline Dard, spokeswoman for the Geneva police.
He was taken care of by an ambulance, and was taken to Geneva University Hospitals. His current state of health is not known.
SIG have announced that they will be lodging a complaint, as they always do in the event of a breach of the security perimeter.
Additional reporting by Maria Ortega
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