Woman Dies Taking Lake Tahoe Waterfall Selfie

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A woman in her early 20s has died while taking a phone portrait near a waterfall near Lake Tahoe, according to local authorities.

The Los Angeles Times says that while taking a selfie, the woman fell over the edge of Eagle Falls in Emerald Bay State Park, the North Tahoe Fire Protection District said in an official statement.

“This is a sad reminder to be cautious when taking selfies and other photos in dangerous areas. Don’t underestimate the power of waterfalls, rivers, and cold water temperatures,” officials said.

The Tahoe Truckee Regional Rescue Team responded to the emergency call and recovered the woman’s body, but her name has not been released at this time as her family is still being notified. Erin Holland, a fire district spokeswoman, said the woman slipped in the late afternoon on Friday, and where she was posing, there is a 150-foot drop to “fast moving water and rocks.” The body was recovered at 4:30 p.m. local time.

This death is the latest in a round of selfie-related deaths and injuries with scenic and exotic backdrops. In March, a woman was mauled by a jaguar after she climbed over a barrier at Wildlife World Zoo in Arizona to get a photo with the big cat. Luckily, she survived, and apologized for her error in judgment.

There have been three deaths this year at the Grand Canyon, and at least one of the people was confirmed to be taking a selfie. A couple who ran a travel blog called Holidays and Happily Ever Afters, which wrote about and posted photos of their adventures in scenic locations all over the world, and shared them on their official Instagram account died recently. Vishnu Viswanath, 29, and his wife, Meenakshi Moorthy, 30, were attempting to take a photograph in Yosemite National Park and died after plunging from Taft Point.

The San Francisco Chronicle quoted Holland as saying that the woman who died Friday “was just too close to the edge.”

“We had such a wet winter with record snow, so the water is so, so powerful and it is so, so cold,” Holland said.

Holland advised that people should take extra care when taking photos near bodies of water.

“People want to go rafting and want to be out in nature, but the water temperature and the rate that the water is moving is not conducive to recreation,” she said.

KTLA says that between 2011 and 2017, there were more than 250 recorded cases worldwide of people dying while taking selfies.