Society

'I Could Be Dead': Minnesota Teen Breaks Neck After Falling From Homemade Zip Line

| by Karin Sun

A teenager has sustained a serious injury after reportedly trying to ride a homemade zip line in a friend's neighbor's yard.

Amaya Pike, 14, of Big Lake, Minnesota, broke her neck after falling from a zip line attached to a tree house in a yard near her friend's home, Fox 9 reported. Pike landed with her full body weight on her head and was passed out for about 10 minutes after the fall. After regaining consciousness, she walked three blocks to a friend's house and called her mother.

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“I grabbed on, and then I stepped off and that is the last thing I remember,” the teen told Fox 9 about the Sept. 30 accident.  “I just remember waking up in the hospital.”

Pike now has to wear a medical halo for six to eight weeks. She can only take baths and will likely miss school as she recovers from the neck injury. She also suffered a contused lung and a concussion in the fall.  

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Pike's doctors told her that she was lucky to escape worse injuries.

"I could be dead or paralyzed right now," she said.

The teen's family, who is now consulting with an attorney, has expressed concern about the potential safety hazards that the neighbor's homemade zip line presents. 

Pike's mother, Jennifer May, said that she talked with the young man who lived at the home where her daughter found the zip line.

"He did say Amaya is not the first person to have fallen off of that," May said. 

Pike noted that the young man had warned her against riding the zip line, but she didn't know that someone else had fallen off the line before. 

May hopes that her daughter's accident doesn't happen to anyone else.

"She could've been paralyzed, she could've had brain damage, she could've died," May said.

Zip lining accidents have become more and more common in the U.S., according to a report published on Aug. 14 in The American Journal of Emergency Medicine. An estimated 16,850 people were treated for zip line injuries in U.S. emergency rooms between 1997 and 2012. Females made up 53.1 percent of the injuries, and 11.7 percent of the patients were hospitalized.

Source: Fox 9, The American Journal of Emergency Medicine

Photo Credit: Fox 9