Watch: Slackliner walks from Italy to Sicily across 3.6km tightrope

An athlete from Estonia has made history as the first person to cross Italy’s Strait of Messina on foot, completing a breathtaking 2.4-mile (3.6km) journey along a slackline high above the water on Wednesday (July 10).

The walk took Jaan Roose nearly three hours, as he covered a distance longer than 30 football fields on a piece of webbed fabric only 0.75 inches wide.

He started from a 870ft high tower on Santa Trada, before going on to walk a distance surpassing the previous world record of 1.68 miles.

However, just 262ft from the finish, Roose fell off the tightrope, with the rules of his discipline requiring a completed crossing without a fall to validate a record.

The slip off the line therefore meant he was unable to claim what would have been an impressive world record.

It took Roose around 15,000 steps to reach the other side of the slackline, ending in Torre Faro, Sicily.