2 Californians dead, 1 injured after fall at Arches National Park in Utah
Two members of a family were killed and another relative was injured after falling near Utah's iconic Delicate Arch last week, according to authorities.
The three were hiking on a steep slope at about 7:45 a.m. Friday when they fell into the sandstone bowl area adjacent to the arch at Arches National Park, according to a statement on Monday from the Grand County Sheriff's Office in Moab, Utah.
Toshiaki Amimoto, 65, and Etoko Amimoto, 60, died after the fall. A 30-year-old man was airlifted to Moab Regional Hospital.
All three were from California, Chief Ranger Scott Brown told The Washington Post. The cause of the fall is currently unknown, Brown added. There was some rain and snow in the area at the time of the fall, and temperatures were in the low 30s, the sheriff's office said.
The Delicate Arch Trail temporarily closed following the accident but reopened later that evening. Park officials tweeted that winter conditions have caused slippery hiking and warned visitors to proceed with caution.
The 46-foot-tall arch is the most widely known of the 2,000 arches in the park, which receives more than 1.5 million visitors per year, according to the National Park Service. The arch is a Utah icon, appearing as one of three standard-issue license plates options.
Rangers frequently have to rescue those who underestimate the 3-mile-long, 480-foot climb to see the arch up close, according to the National Park Service.