Man in Japan falls off bridge and dies, moments after proposing to girlfriend

Okinawa's famed Irabu Bridge, which opened in 2015 and is the longest toll-free bridge in Japan. PHOTO: SCREENGRAB FROM YOUTUBE

A Japanese couple's joyous moment turned tragic after a 32-year-old man - moments after proposing to his girlfriend - fell off a bridge early Monday (Sept 4).

The incident reportedly occurred on the central part of the 3.5km-long Irabu Bridge, which links the Miyako and Irabu islands in Okinawa prefecture, just after midnight.

The man had been in a car driven by his girlfriend, who had stopped on the side of the road, reported news website Japan Today.

After they got out of the vehicle, the man proposed to his girlfriend. Upon hearing a "yes", he was so happy that he allegedly jumped over a 1.2m railing, but lost his grip and plunged 30m into the sea.

Local police said he had been drinking before the incident.

The authorities launched a search-and-rescue operation after receiving an emergency call from his girlfriend, and found his body in the sea about seven hours later.

He was taken to hospital and pronounced dead.

This is the first fatality at the famous bridge, which opened in 2015 and is the longest toll-free bridge in Japan.

In a similar incident in 2014, a 29-year-old Bulgarian woman died after falling off a cliff on the Spanish island of Ibiza, just moments after accepting her boyfriend's marriage proposal.

She was believed to have lost her balance while jumping with excitement.

Join ST's Telegram channel and get the latest breaking news delivered to you.