Tags: distracted | man | walks off | cliff

Man Distracted by Device Walks Off California Cliff to His Death

Image: Man Distracted by Device Walks Off California Cliff to His Death

Sunset Cliffs near San Diego. (Tysonv/Dreamstime.com)

By    |   Monday, 28 Dec 2015 08:28 AM

A man witnesses said was distracted by an electronic device fell to his death on Christmas Day at San Diego's Sunset Cliffs.

"Witnesses stated seeing someone distracted by an electronic device and he just fell over the edge," lifeguard Bill Bender told NBC News. "[He] wasn't watching where he was walking, he was looking down at the device in his hands."

The man was identified as Joshua M. Burwell, 33, of Sheridan, Indiana. He leaves behind a son.

The incident took place around 4:30 p.m. on Friday, and Burwell's mother, Sharyle Burwell, said in a subsequent Facebook post that her son died while taking pictures.

After witnesses saw Burwell tumble off the cliff on the 900 block of Sunset Cliffs Boulevard, three Good Samaritans made their way down the rocks to help him.

"They acted quickly, they found a way to get down the cliff," Bender said. "They put themselves at jeopardy...They administered CPR to the person in attempt to save a life."

Thor Wilink, 13, heard screams of "Help, please God, save me," and rushed from his home to help.

"After that I heard 'does anyone have rope and a lapel', and I know because I go to Yosemite, so I grabbed that, went down to the cliffs, and started to untangle the rope," he said. That's when fire crews arrived. I only had one priority, to save the person," Wilink said. "I only had one priority."

"Just like driving and using your cellphone, you don’t want to be walking and using your cell phone," Bender said, according to Time. "You don’t want to be distracted by anything when you’re in an area where you can be put at risk."

CNET.com reported that earlier this year, a tourist died at the Taj Mahal while trying to take a selfie with his phone, and three years ago a woman fell off a cliff in Alaska while texting. She survived.

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A man witnesses said was distracted by an electronic device fell to his death on Christmas Day at San Diego's Sunset Cliffs.
distracted, man, walks off, cliff
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2015-28-28
Monday, 28 Dec 2015 08:28 AM
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