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

A tourist Wednesday evening miraculously survived after falling off a 300-foot cliff into Hawaii's Kilauea volcano and landing on a narrow ledge about 70 feet below.

The man, whose identity has not been released, allegedly climbed past a metal railing at the Steaming Bluff overlook and got extremely close to the edge before losing his footing and tumbling into the volcano's caldera, according to a statement from Hawaii Volcanoes National Park.

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Kilauea Volcano Hawaii
(photo credit: U.S. Geological Survey, Department of the Interior/USGS)
(photo credit: U.S. Geological Survey, Department of the Interior/USGS)
(photo credit: U.S. Geological Survey, Department of the Interior/USGS)
(photo credit: U.S. Geological Survey, Department of the Interior/USGS)
(photo credit: U.S. Geological Survey, Department of the Interior/USGS)
(photo credit: U.S. Geological Survey, Department of the Interior/USGS)
Kilauea Halemaʻumaʻu lava lake nearing the top of the crater rim #volcano http://t.co/1GLB2EiLNw http://t.co/MXdZm5G485
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Rescue crews found the severely injured man around 9 p.m., airlifted him out of the caldera using ropes and a Department of Defense helicopter and rushed him to Hilo Medical Center to receive urgent treatment, the Honolulu Star-Advertiser reports.

Following the incident, Chief Ranger John Broward released a statement warning tourists that ignoring important barriers can have fatal consequences.

"Visitors should never cross safety barriers, especially around dangerous and destabilized cliff edges," Broward said. "Crossing safety barriers and entering closed areas can result in serious injuries and death."

Broward's warning comes amid a rash of serious falls at national parks, including multiple recent deaths at the Grand Canyon.

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