Tuesday, 20 August, 2019

Man plummets off 300-foot cliff into caldera of Hawaii's Kilauea volcano

Ash erupts from the Halemaumau crater in Hawaii Enlarge Image Ash erupts from the Halemaumau crater in Hawaii. Reuters
Patty Aguilar | 03 May, 2019, 16:54

According to Ben Hayes, spokesman with the National Park Service, the man climbed past the metal railing before falling 20 metres into the crater.

On Wednesday evening (May 1), a man plummeted into Hawaii's Kīlauea caldera - and survived.

Kilauea is not now erupting, the U.S. Geological Survey said in its weekly report from the Hawaiian Volcano Observatory.

Kilauea is not now erupting, and its alert level is now "green", an update from the Hawaiian Volcano Observatory said on April 30. The Geological Survey has ranked the volcano's threat potential as "very high".

"Visitors should never cross safety barriers, especially around risky and destabilized cliff edges", said Chief Ranger John Broward.

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This saw a collapse of the Kilauea summit, with the crater nearly doubling in size.

The incident was reported at 6:50 p.m. Search-and-rescue crews found him alive but seriously injured on a narrow ledge about 70 feet down from the cliff around 9 p.m., officials said.

"Hawai'i Volcanoes National Park thanks the help and support from Hawai'i County Fire Department and United States Army during the search and rescue last night", the National Park Service stated.

The rescue team airlifted him out of the caldera, using ropes; while a Department of Defense helicopter rushed him to Hilo Medical Centre for urgent treatment, the Honolulu Star-Advertiser reports. It is the most active of Hawaii's five volcanoes and has been erupting since the early 1980s. Hayes said the man had fallen into the caldera, which had been formed by previous volcanic activity. "Island of Hawaii residents should be familiar with the long-term hazard map for Kīlauea Volcano and how to stay informed about Kiilauea activity".

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