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Toddler Survives 230-Foot Plunge

September 23, 1999

NORTH VANCOUVER, British Columbia (AP) _ Rescuers in British Columbia are marveling at a 17-month-old girl who survived a fall from a popular tourist bridge to a rocky ledge 230 feet below.

The baby, bruised but with no broken limbs, was taken to B.C. Children’s Hospital in Vancouver after falling from the Capilano Suspension bridge on Wednesday and landing on her back.

Police said they are investigating how the baby fell from her mother’s arms over the bridge railing and onto the ledge of the bank of the raging Capilano River.

``Right now, we are treating this as a criminal investigation,″ Constable Heidi Hoffman said.

Rescuers said the baby’s survival was a miracle.

``I could actually see the baby moving her arms when I looked down from the top,″ said paramedic Ian Macmillan. ``The baby was crying, which we love to hear. When it’s quiet, that’s what we don’t like.″

Staff at the popular tourist site called 911 immediately after the baby fell. Macmillan said the mother was distraught and was able to talk only briefly to describe where she was standing when the baby fell.

Terry Abrams of North Vancouver District’s fire service, said the woman apparently slipped, and the baby fell.

``There’s some bruising on the skull, but the child survived,″ Abrams said. ``We have our fingers crossed for a full recovery.″

Capilano Suspension bridge is a popular tourist destination, with 800,000 visitors annually.

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