Man Rescued After Falling 60 Feet Down Caldera

May 2, 2019, 8:33 AM HST · Updated May 2, 9:10 AM
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File image courtesy Hawaiʻi Volcanoes National Park

Rescuers used a rope system to pull a man to safety after he fell 60 feet down the caldera at Hawaiʻi Volcanoes National Park on Hawaiʻi Island on Wednesday night.

Authorities say the man in his 30’s went over the railing at the edge of the caldera at the “Steam Vents” lookout location. That’s when the ground gave way and he fell down the face of the cliff.

Fire officials say the caldera floor is more than 300 feet down, but the man fell on a small ledge roughly 60 feet from the top.

National Park staff and personnel from the Hawaiʻi Fire Department worked together to extricate the man using a stretcher and a rope raising system.

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Once back on top, the man was transported in critical condition to the Hilo Medical Center aboard a military blackhawk aircraft.

The incident was reported at 6:50 p.m. The rescue lasted for hours, with the final fire unit leaving the scene just before 11 p.m.

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