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Boy 'lucky to be alive' after fall into volcano steam vent

By Star-Advertiser staff

LAST UPDATED: 03:34 p.m. HST, Apr 11, 2013

A 15-year-old boy from San Rafael, Calif. is “lucky to be alive,” after falling 20 to 25 feet  into a steam vent at the Hawaii Volcanoes National Park Wednesday night, the National Park Service said in a news release today.

The boy apparently leaped over a protective railing at the steam vent near the Volcano House and visitors center, the park service said.

A park service search and rescue teams and Hawaii County firefighters based in the park responded to a 911 call from the victim’s mother at about 6:43 p.m.

Search and rescue coordinator John Broward, assisted by firefighters, rappelled into the deep, narrow, chimney-like crack in the earth and rescued the boy.

The boy suffered a bump on the head and minor abrasions and refused further medical treatment.

The National Park Service said the steam rising from the vent is formed when rain water encounters hot rocks. The steam temperature in the vent can reach 160 degrees, cooling to 120 degrees at the surface.

“This young visitor and his family are extraordinarily lucky that he survived this mishap,” Park Superintendent Cindy Orlando said. “This incident serves as a reminder that park visitors are urged to stay on trails and not engage in reckless behavior while visiting their national parks.”

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localguy wrote:
Guardrails? Yes you babooze, they are to keep you from injuring or killing yourself. What was he thinking?
on April 11,2013 | 03:05PM
lowtone123 wrote:
He wasn't. He left his common sense at home. A common malady with some visitors. Those types should stay home where they belong. The rest are welcome.
on April 11,2013 | 03:42PM
allie wrote:
on April 11,2013 | 06:04PM
sailfish1 wrote:
Yeah! We have plenty of locals here that don't have common sense. We don't need more of that kind.
on April 11,2013 | 07:11PM
mikethenovice wrote:
No Aloha neither nowadays. So Sad.
on April 11,2013 | 09:17PM
mikethenovice wrote:
The lava would melt the steel guardrails.
on April 11,2013 | 09:16PM
veelc wrote:
Let's see, single mom, outta control teen looks like some serious lickins' if was my house. Let him go on and the road becomes rougher than anything a volcano can throw at you. 'cept magma...
on April 11,2013 | 04:02PM
eoe wrote:
Next up: lawsuit.
on April 11,2013 | 04:31PM
BigBird001 wrote:
Let's hope he doesn't ever procreate. Darwin award, anyone?
on April 11,2013 | 04:36PM
MolokaiChuck wrote:
Where were the parents?????????????????????????????
on April 11,2013 | 04:50PM
mikethenovice wrote:
Life Insurance?
on April 11,2013 | 09:17PM
kailua000 wrote:
they will still find some local lawyer who is willing to sue the state because this babooze was to stupid to stay behind the guardrail. and our stupid state will settle . you watch.
on April 11,2013 | 05:04PM
jm2375 wrote:
The park is federal property.
on April 11,2013 | 05:57PM
mikethenovice wrote:
Yep. Stupid people have rights?
on April 11,2013 | 09:18PM
Slow wrote:
All the commenters are so right. Why couldn't this 16 year old behave maturely like we all did at that age?
on April 11,2013 | 05:26PM
copperwire9 wrote:
on April 11,2013 | 05:34PM
64hoo wrote:
he was an overweight kid and wanted to lose wait. what a good idea jumping in the steam vent. instant steam bath to lose weight.
on April 11,2013 | 05:35PM
50skane wrote:
Now they'll sue Hawaii for not putting a guardrail 20 feet high or topped with barbed wire or not having DANGER signs posted every three feet. Being a stupid idiot doesn't matter anymore according to civil attorneys drooling at this story.
on April 11,2013 | 05:57PM
pseudo wrote:
Time to make "risk - takers " who ignore signage and warnings PAY for rescue. About how much would cost? Accident is one thing; showing off / taking stupid risk is totally different.
on April 11,2013 | 06:21PM
olos73 wrote:
He wanted to meet Pele.
on April 11,2013 | 06:58PM
mikethenovice wrote:
Wear clean cloth next time.
on April 11,2013 | 09:19PM
Bothrops wrote:
John Broward has stones.
on April 11,2013 | 07:02PM
scooters wrote:
I can see the law suit coming now= Mom's say's Hey, there's no sign saying 'Don't Jump Over the Guard Rail,Stupid" or you might get hurt.
on April 11,2013 | 08:26PM
moondog73 wrote:
Just like the knuckle head who straddled the blow hole.
on April 11,2013 | 11:41PM
mikethenovice wrote:
Boy never take a bath. Pele no like him.
on April 11,2013 | 09:16PM
mikethenovice wrote:
Only cats have nine lives.
on April 11,2013 | 09:19PM
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