Australian family injured after woman fell into a sinkhole in New Zealand


An Australian woman drom Perth visiting family in New Zealand fell into a geothermal sinkhole which opened up in a footpath near the entrance to Whakarewarewa Village,in Rotorua, on the country’s north island, Thursday, as the ground “may have been compromised following the recent heavy rainfall”. The sinkhole, locally known as a „fumarole”, was two-meter-wide and one meter deep. It appears to be just past the bridge going into the village. Fumaroles emit steam and volcanic gases, such as sulfur dioxide and carbon dioxide. The first attempt to pull her out was by her husband, which is why he also received some injuries. First responders at the scene were the village’s staff and two ambulances.The woman suffered serious injuries and was taken to Waikato Hospital where she is now in stable condition. Her husband was said to be in a moderate condition.


Whakarewarewa is known for its geothermal walking trails, which give visitors a close-up look at hot spring lakes, mud pools and geothermal geysers. Some of its geothermal hot pools are used for swimming and bathing, but others reach temperatures of 100C-200C and are used for cooking. The village will be temporarily closed until a full investigation and assessment has been undertaken by Worksafe – New Zealand’s health and safety regulator. Rotorua Lakes Council had been notified.