As reported by AFP.
Our deepest thoughts go out to the family. Goes to show you that nature can take as well as provide…
WASHINGTON — A seven-year-old girl was killed when a rogue wave swept a group of sightseers into the ocean from a cliff-top lookout in the northeastern US state of Maine, a Coast Guard spokesman said.
The girl, who was not identified, was with about 20 other tourists on a scenic overlook known as Thunder Hole when the huge wave struck, the spokesman said.
“She was recovered, but the hospital reported to us that she was deceased upon arriving to the hospital,” Petty Officer James Rhodes told AFP. The precise cause of death was not immediately known.
Earlier, Rhodes had said nine people were taken to the hospital after the incident, some with broken bones and back injuries.
Three people had been reported missing, but the spokesman said all were subsequently accounted for.
“We had several thousand people lining what we call Ocean Drive inside Acadia National Park watching the waves that were unusually big,” the park’s superintendent Sheridan Steele told CNN.
Thunder Hole, which is on a jagged cliff overlooking the Atlantic Ocean, is a tourist attraction known for the huge waves that crash against the cliff, throwing up scenic spray.
But Rhodes said the wave that swept onlookers into the ocean was likely associated with Hurricane Bill, which caused high tides and surf along the US east coast as it headed towards Canada.
“It looks like it’s with the weather, with the hurricane and everything,” Rhodes said. “Due to the hurricane coming through we have had reports of rough waves.”
In its latest advisory, the National Hurricane Center said Bill was continuing to weaken as it passed Canada’s east coast.
The storm, which is the first hurricane of this year’s Atlantic storm season, was headed for Newfoundland with winds of 75 miles (95 kilometers) per hour.
Steele said high waves of the type that hit Thunder Hole were not unusual and that park officials had tried to warn onlookers to be careful.
“I’ve seen other storm surges like this. They’re quite dramatic,” he said. “Even though we try to warn people and try to get people to watch from a safe distance, we weren’t able to contact everybody in time.”