An American tourist had to be rescued on Mount Vesuvius near Naples after falling into the crater of the Italian volcano crater whilst attempting to retrieve his cellphone, the association of Vesuvius park guides has confirmed.
The 23-year-old man from Baltimore was hiking on an unauthorized trail along with three relatives on Saturday morning, the carabinieri of the provincial command of Naples said. Two British tourists were also spotted walking in the same restricted area.
Paolo Cappelli, head of the Confesercenti tourism association for Vesuvius, said that four volcano guides had responded after noticing the tourist had fallen into the crater and was in “serious difficulty.”
Cappelli said that the guides lowered a rope 15 meters (50 feet) into the crater in order to pull the tourist up and provided basic first aid. Fortunately he only suffered superficial injuries to his legs, arm and back. Carabinieri park police then arrived and brought the tourist to a local police station in order to file a complaint over the trespass.
Mount Vesuvius last erupted in 1944. The volcano is still active, but is in a state of repose, according to the Vesuvius National Park website.
At its highest point the mountain reaches 1,277 meters (4,190 feet), while the crater has a diameter of 450 meters (1,476 feet) and is 300 meters (984 feet) deep. The volcano is famous historically for the destruction of the city of Pompeii in AD 79.