by Steve Croupi
An amazing Las Vegas publicity stunt almost ended in disaster Wednesday night for British billionaire Sir Richard Branson.
One of the world's best-known billionaires fell 40-stories from the top of the palms Hotel to kick off the launch his latest multi-billion dollar enterprise, an extension of his low-cost airline Virgin America.
But Branson came down faster than anyone expected
In the middle of the fall a gust of wind slammed his backside and left hand into the side of the building.
It nearly ripped his pants off and caused some painful but not serious injuries.
At the end of the ride Branson seemed shaken.
He spoke a few words to the crowd and then went inside for medical treatment.
During the fall, Branson released a handful of tickets for free flights on Virgin America.
But the wind sent them flying and no one seemed to be able to locate any of them afterwards.
The stunt was emceed by the magic duo of Penn and teller...
Branson invites danger in almost everything he does.
His people say despite the injuries suffered while plummeting at The Palms he returned to his publicity schedule just a few hours later