75 year old Hilo man falls 100ft to his death at Kilauea Volcano at Hawaii National Park while observing new lava formations at night.
A 75-year-old man fell 100 to his death in a closed area of Hawaii Volcanoes National Park, where he landed below the crater rim of a viewing area of Kilauea volcano, park officials said.
The man, a resident of Hilo who has not been named, apparently fell Sunday night along the volcano’s summit just on 12.15 am, the Honolulu Star-Advertiser reported.
National Park Service rangers and Hawaii County firefighters searched for the man after his family reported him missing early Monday. A helicopter was flown in to recover his body which was found 100 feet below the crater rim, west of the Uekahuna viewing era at the summit. The missing man’s body was recovered about 8 a.m. on Jan. 3, rangers said.
The incident follows visitors going to the park at night to get a glimpse of a glowing lava lake from the volcano, which began to erupt in September, according to CBS News.
Footage of the volcano’s Halemaumau Crater posted on the US Geological Survey website shows lava streams on the crater floor and clouds of volcanic gas blowing skyward.
When the volcano erupted a few weeks ago, it spewed about 26,000 gallons of lava a second, KGMB-TV reported at the time.
‘We have fountaining. We have fissures. And we have lava lake activity,’ Natalia Deligne of the Hawaiian Volcano Observatory told the news outlet. ‘All of that is confined to the crater.’
Jessica Ferracane, a spokeswoman for Hawaiian Volcanoes National Park, urged visitors to ‘recreate responsibly.’
‘We still urge people who are planning to come, there could be long lines to get into the park and we’re expecting upwards of thousands of people a day to see the new eruption,’ Ferracane told KGMB.
Kilauea’s eruption in 2018 was by far the most destructive in modern history, reported the station, which said it spewed lava into the lower Puna district and destroyed several communities.
To date authorities have yet to say how the victim came to fall to his death and if all safety procedures were being adhered to.