FILE - This May 16, 2012 photo shows Nik Wallenda performing a walk on a tightrope in the rain as people watch during training for his walk over Niagara Falls in Niagara Falls, N.Y. Wallenda can't visit a new place without envisioning a wire strung highabove his head: Linking buildings, landmarks, nations. Even as a 6-year-old at Niagara Falls with his parents, he pictured walking a tightrope over the raging, whitewater maw. Now 33, he's ready to live out that childhood fantasy when he attempts Friday,
Schumer: FAA Grants Critical Permit to String Tightrope by Helicopter for Wallenda Walk
Niagara Falls, NY (WBEN) Senator Charles Schumer says the FAA has granted a critical permit to allow Haverfield Aviation to use a helicopter to string a special tightrope from the Canadian side of Niagara Falls to the American side, just in time for Nik Wallenda’s historic walk across the Falls on Friday.
“As Nik Wallenda prepares for his historic walk across Niagara Falls, nothing should stand in his way,” said Schumer. “That’s why I made contact with the Federal Aviation Administration upon learning of the pending permit that is needed in order to string Nik Wallenda’s two-inch tightrope across Niagara Falls by helicopter, and conveyed the urgency of getting this done quickly. I am pleased with today’s announcement that the FAA has acted quickly to approve this critical permit, which will allow Nik Wallenda’s historic walk to move forward as planned. Wallenda will still take to the skies over Niagara on Friday, which is going to be a major tourism event in Niagara Falls and great news for local businesses.”
In his press conference Monday at Sisters of Charity Hospital in Buffalo, the Democrat mentioned that he had heard from Nik Wallenda that the FAA had approved his request for special permit to string the tightrope. At the time, he told reporters he would check with the agency and issue a statement once he had confirmation.
Otherwise, Schumer calls the tightrope walk a "good event" for Niagara Falls and Western New York.
"Some people like it. Some people don't, but it's sure a shot in the arm in the economy," he said.
He's also happy that ABC Television has insisted that Wallenda wear a tether to make the walk.
"I think it's being done right and done well," Schumer says.
New York's senior senator says he won't be in Niagara Falls for the event on Friday night, but he wished Nik Wallenda well in his walk across the Falls.