Spanish balcony jumping craze inspired by drunken Brits, study finds

Stunts rack up total cost of 1.5 million Euros (£1.28 million) in hospital fees

Matt Payton
Tuesday 23 August 2016 18:14
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More than 12 people have died from 'balconing' since 2010
More than 12 people have died from 'balconing' since 2010

The dangerous balcony-jumping trend prevalent in Spain is mainly due to drunk British people on holiday, a study has concluded.

"Balconing," which refers to the practice of jumping into a swimming pool from a hotel balcony, has become such a problem that doctors from the Son Espases hospital in Majorca decided to research the phenomenon.

The term has also been used used to cover when people fall while attempting to climb from one balcony to another.

Xavier Gonzalez, the hospital's head of surgery, told AFP: "It's endemic. It seems that...it's like an initiation rite for some tourists, whose parents already came here when they were young."

The research team studied a period from 2010 to 2015, only covering patients who were treated in the hospital and not those who died while "balconing".

Altogether, the hospital treated 46 patients of which more than 60 per cent were British. Germans were second most likely to be involved in the stunts, followed by Spaniards.

Alcohol was involved in 40 per cent of the cases, with drugs also playing a role.

The craze is estimated to have cost a total 1.5 million Euros (£1.28 million) in hospital fees due to some patients remaining in intensive care for long periods of time, with others becoming paraplegic.

Police officer karate kicks handcuffed man in Majorca

While it is unknown how many people have died balconing, Spanish media has reported more than dozen deaths in the last five years.

While being most prevalent on the Balearic archipelago including Magaluf and Ibiza, the trend has also been reported on Spain's Costa Brava.

Spanish authorities have tried to curb the trend by printing preventative leaflets and imposing fines for anyone caught trying to jump from balconies.

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