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Survival Facts

Humans can live for weeks without eating, but can only survive around 11 days without sleeping.

Acrobat Joseph Späh survived the Hindenburg airship disaster in 1937 by jumping out of the window. (source)

Queen Victoria survived seven assassination attempts during her reign.

View more facts about: Royalty

The person with the longest verified lifespan ever was Jeanne Calment of France, who is believed to have been born on February 21, 1875, and died on August 4, 1997, at an age of 122 years and 164 days.

Einstein's ideas on relative acceleration were partly inspired by the free fall of a man who fell off a roof in Berlin. The man, who survived without injury, told Einstein that he had not felt the effects of gravity.

View more facts about: Geniuses | Physics and Physicists

In 1911, Bobby Leech survived a barrel ride over Niagara Falls. After recovering from his injuries, his new-found fame gave him the opportunity to embark on a worldwide lecture tour. In New Zealand, he slipped on a banana peel and died from complications due to the fall. (source)

View more facts about: Unusual Ways to Die

Violet Jessup, a stewardess on the Titanic, survived its sinking. She also survived the sinking of the Britannic in 1916, and she was aboard the Olympic when it was rammed in 1911.

View more facts about: Titanic | First World War

A woman once fell from a plane at an altitude of 33,330 feet without a parachute and survived. On January 26, 1972, a DC-9 aeroplane from Yugoslavia exploded at an altitude of 33,330 feet over Serbska Kamenice in Czechoslovakia. Flight attendant Vesna Vulovic plummeted to the ground without a parachute. She eventually made a full recovery from her injuries and is still alive today. She holds the record for surviving the longest fall without a parachute. (source)

In 1942–1943, Poon Lim survived on a raft floating on the Atlantic Ocean for 133 days. The ship he was on, the SS Ben Lomond, was torpedoed in the Atlantic Ocean near the Equator and around 300 miles off the coast of Brazil on November 23, 1942. He escaped on a raft and survived by catching fish and anything else that he stumbled upon and drank rainwater. He was rescued off Salinópolis, Brazil on April 5, 1943. He was awarded the British Empire Medal and the U.S. Congress voted him American citizenship. (source)

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