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College Student Survives Balcony Fall of Six Stories at the
 Marriott Resort & Spa, Hilton Head Island, South Carolina

By Tim Donnelly, The Island Packet, Hilton Head Island, S.C.McClatchy-Tribune Regional News

May 24--A 22-year-old fell about six stories from the 10th floor balcony of a Hilton Head Island hotel and landed on the conference center roof Friday afternoon, authorities said.

The Ohio State University student -- whose name was not released -- was leaning over his balcony railing shortly after 3 p.m. at the Hilton Head Marriott Resort & Spa while talking to a person on another balcony when he slipped and fell, said Capt. Mark Mattox of the Beaufort County Sheriff's Office.

The student hit another balcony made of wooden slats on the way down, which broke his fall, Mattox said.

The student was taken to Hilton Head Hospital where he received a CAT scan. He was then flown by helicopter to Memorial Health University Medical Center in Savannah to be examined for internal injuries, Mattox said.

He appeared to be in good condition.

"They said he was pretty much OK," Mattox said. "Unless he had some internal injuries or stuff nobody's seen, he was fine."

Mattox said the Sheriff's Office would not release the student's name until his parents were notified.

Authorities last night still were investigating whether alcohol was involved in the incident.

The Hilton Head Fire and Rescue Division arrived at 3:22 p.m. and brought a ladder to the top of the hotel's meeting and convention center, which is positioned on the side of the hotel where the student fell, spokeswoman Joheida Fister said.

Crews brought him out through a third floor room, she said.

About nine division personnel responded to the call.

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To see more of The Island Packet, or to subscribe to the newspaper, go to http://www.islandpacket.com.

Copyright (c) 2008, The Island Packet, Hilton Head Island, S.C.

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