11:17 GMT11 July 2020
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    Some presents are fantastic and affect our lives so profoundly we remember them forever, but some surprises can be odd, or even dangerous. If you don’t decline the gift, then it might still become memorable, but in a very different way. This is what happened to a senior man in France, who was involuntarily involved in a test flight.

    A 64-year-old man accidentally ejected himself while flying in a Dassault Rafale jet at over 500km/h (320mph) at an altitude of 760 metres (2,500 feet). According to reports, the force of takeoff made the man stand, so he mistakenly grabbed the ejection handle to steady himself. He also failed to securely attach his helmet, losing it mid-air, which worsened the situation.

    French Air Force Rafale manufactured by France's Dassault Aviation speeds above Le Bourget airport, north of Paris, during the 44th Paris Air Show, in France. (File)
    © AP Photo / Remy de la Mauviniere
    French Air Force Rafale manufactured by France's Dassault Aviation speeds above Le Bourget airport, north of Paris, during the 44th Paris Air Show, in France. (File)

    The man did not plan the flight himself, but employees of his firm arranged it as a surprise gift, bringing him to the Saint-Dizier Airbase.

    According to investigators, "his heart was in full tachycardia", ranging from 136 to 142 beats per minute before the incident, and the man was not prepared for the takeoff.

    The unfortunate passenger's parachute, however, saved his life, and the man managed to land without sustaining any serious injuries, but was taken to hospital afterward. The pilot also avoided a catastrophe, finishing the flight safely.

    Tags:
    plane accident, jet, Rafale, Rafale fighter jets, Dassault Rafale, Dassault Rafale, Rafale
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