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Pennsylvania woman plunges to her death after being swept up by a waterfall at Glacier National Park
Photo by Rodrigo Valle/Getty Images

Pennsylvania woman plunges to her death after being swept up by a waterfall at Glacier National Park

A 26-year-old woman from Pennsylvania fell to her death after plunging into a waterfall and drowning while visiting Glacier National Park in Montana. The woman's identity has not yet been released.

The New York Post reported that the incident happened above St. Mary's Falls on Sunday. The waterfall is 35 feet high and a popular hiking location for visitors to explore on the park's east side.

Those who witnessed the horrific incident said the woman was washed over the falls and remained submerged at the bottom of the water for several minutes before someone was able to pull her back to the surface. The individual conducted CPR on the woman until the authorities arrived, according to the report.

The park authorities received several emergency calls about the drowning around 5:20 p.m. Park rangers made it to the scene around 5:45 p.m., 25 minutes after the calls were made.

Though a helicopter landed nearby around 6:20 p.m. and resuscitation efforts were made, the woman never regained consciousness after being pulled from the water. The authorities called off the resuscitation efforts around 7:00 p.m., and the woman was officially pronounced dead, according to park officials.

The woman's body was transported to the 1913 Ranger Station around St. Mary, Montana. The body was subsequently taken to the medical examiner in Missoula, Montana, for an autopsy.

Following the incident, the national park service released a statement: "Park staff would like to thank Glacier County, ALERT, Babb Ambulance and US Border Patrol for this support, along with numerous bystanders for their immediate assistance."

“The park extends their deepest condolences to family and friends of the woman and asks that the public respect their privacy," they added.

The incident is currently under investigation, according to the reports. The authorities intend to notify the woman's next of kin before releasing her name to the public.

Drowning is one of the leading causes of death for those who visit the park, according to park officials. In 2022, park officials said it was tied for the deadliest year in the park.

As of 2017, there had been 56 visitors to the park who had drowned to death inside the park. Experts noted that hikers are often too casual with the seriousness of the terrain throughout the park.

"That's sort of the beauty and the reward of enjoying nature is having that freedom to enjoy the wilderness and not have a Disney World experience where all risk is managed," Sara Newman, then-acting chief of the National Park Service's Office of Risk Management, said. "It's not risk free to come to a park like it really is in Disney World."

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