Wipeout: Christmas Tree Surfer Ends Up in Hospital

By Daisy Lin Shapiro
|  Tuesday, Dec 29, 2009  |  Updated 10:38 PM PDT
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Christmas Tree Surfing Goes Horribly Wrong

Dean Garcia

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Wipeout: Christmas Tree Surfer Ends Up in Hospital

A teenager proves why Christmas tree surfing is a terrible idea.

Christmas Tree Surfing Goes Horribly Wrong

A teenager is hospitalized after riding on a Christmas tree attached to the bumper of a car.
More Photos and Videos

Kids, don't try this at home.

Christmas tree surfing, a new fad popular on the Internet and chronicled on YouTube, has landed a local teenager in the hospital.
 
"We've heard about Christmas tree surfing, but never actually seen it done here," said Orange County Sheriff's Department spokesman Jim Amormino.
 
Deputies are still investigating the incident, which happened around 10:45 p.m. on Sunday in San Clemente. They say Dean Garcia, 18, was on a Christmas trees attached to the rear bumper of an SUV.

The SUV dragged Garcia along Calle Ola Verde, going about 20-25 mph in a residential area, when the car struck a speed bump. This caused the tree to swing out, slamming the 18-year-old tree surfer into and under a parked car.
 
"My back is absolutely killing me and it hurts to take too deep of a breath," said Dean Garcia, who was transported to Mission hospital.

"He is very lucky he was not killed," Amormino said. "This is very dangerous, and if we see it happening, we will issue citation, maybe even impound the car."
 
The driver fled the scene after the crash. The car is registered to one of the kids. Amormino said it is just a matter time until the driver is identified, and technically it is a hit-and-run felony.

When asked if he'd ever do it again, Garcia says never -- "unless I'm in an open area."

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