Lava flow from Kilauea’s eruption in Hawaii last year has created a new black sand beach on the Big Island.
A man was rescued but seriously injured after falling into Hawaii’s Kīlauea caldera this week, National Park Service officials said.
The incident occurred Wednesday at Hawaii Volcanoes National Park when a visitor climbed over a metal railing, lost his footing and fell from a 300-foot cliff.
The man had been trying to get closer to the cliff’s edge at the Steaming Bluff overlook, the park service said.
Another visitor called emergency officials, and a search and rescue crew began looking for the man.
About two and a half hours after the fall was reported, a search team found the man “alive but seriously injured on a narrow ledge about 70 feet down from the cliff edge,” the park service said in a statement.
The Kilauea eruption that began on May 3, 2018 destroyed hundreds of homes, businesses, and displaced thousands of residents. One year later, many are still recovering.
Sandy Hooper, USA TODAY
The man was brought up from the ledge and airlifted to a hospital on the island, according to the park service.
The last deadly fall in the park occurred in October 2017, and park officials warned against crossing railings near cliffs.
“Visitors should never cross safety barriers, especially around dangerous and destabilized cliff edges,” Chief Ranger John Broward said in a statement. “Crossing safety barriers and entering closed areas can result in serious injuries and death.”
Hawaii News Now reported the man is a soldier from the Schofield Barracks on Oahu who was on the Big Island for a training.
“He obviously is doing remarkably well for his fall,” Matthias Kusch, Hawaii County Fire Department battalion chief, told news outlet. “Only time will tell what injuries he has.”
The fall occurred about a year after Kīlauea erupted in what would become Hawaii’s largest and most destructive eruption in decades.
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