A local hiker swept away by a rocky stream in a Hong Kong country park was found dead late Tuesday afternoon following an hours-long search by divers and other emergency services personnel.
The 60-year-old man was hiking with another man and two women along the Ma Dai stream in Ma On Shan Country Park when the mishap occurred at 10.46am, while a No 3 typhoon warning signal was still in force. The Observatory downgraded the alert to a No 1 signal at 1.20pm.
The group had set off on their journey at about 9.30am at Tai Shui Hang off Hang Tak Street.
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“The man ... was swept away by flooding after reaching Hero Falls,” a police spokesman said.
According to the Fire Services Department, 13 fire engines and two ambulances, as well as a team of divers, were dispatched to the scene after one of the man’s companions made an emergency call.
At about 4.30pm, firefighters found the body of the man at the scene, according to police.
It was the third hiking-related fatality on the city’s trails this month alone.
On July 10, another hiker, Cheung Shuk-ling, 32, died from a fall while taking selfies at a Tuen Mun mountain site. She set off with several friends from a public housing estate in Tuen Mun around 11am that day and reached Tsing Dai rocky stream soon after 5pm.
Cheung, who had over 17,000 followers on social media, reportedly tried to take photos but lost her footing and fell into the pond. She was airlifted to Pamela Youde Nethersole Hospital where she was declared dead.
On July 3, a 24-year-old man collapsed and died while hiking from Pak Tam Chung to High Island Reservoir in Sai Kung Country Park amid a hot weather warning.
Latest figures from the Fire Services Department show the number of mountain rescue incidents in Hong Kong surged 132 per cent year on year, to 566, over the first six months of 2021.
The number of hiking deaths also rose to five between January and June this year, up from three in the same period of 2020. The number of injuries also spiked 156 per cent this year, to 349.
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