According to ABC-13:
[A Nelson County] deputy says a group of six LU students went to the top of the falls to take pictures, and a little before 6 p.m. one of them fell.I cannot imagine losing a child. Prayers for Faith's family and friends as they face the days ahead.
The deputy says the group crossed a barrier, and was standing on a part of the falls where they should not have been.
"Fear thou not; for I am with thee: be not dismayed; for I am thy God: I will strengthen thee; yea, I will help thee; yea, I will uphold thee with the right hand of my righteousness." --Isaiah 41:10
Update #2: Reporter Steve Hardy with the Lynchburg News & Advance has photos and more about the dangerous conditions of this popular hike in his article, Crabtree Falls' beauty can be dangerous lure. I wish there never again had to be articles written about fatalities at the Falls....
Crabtree Falls has claimed another victim. Late Monday afternoon an unidentified 18-year-old Liberty University student fell to her death on the treacherous falls. Authorities have not released her identity.
Monday was a beautiful spring day as five Liberty University students hiked the very popular Crabtree Falls trail in the Blue Ridge Mountains of Nelson County. The accident happened around 5 pm but an emergency phone call could not be sent until an hour later due to the lack of cell service in the vicinity, according to reporter Marcella Robertson with NBC-29.
Crabtree Falls, located off the Blue Ridge Parkway, is the highest vertical-drop cascading waterfall east of the Mississippi River and, sadly, one of the most dangerous. Its victims over the years have climbed onto the rocks that are deceptively slippery with moss and spray from the falls and slipped to their deaths.
This is the latest in a series of at least 28 deaths at the highest cascading falls east of the Mississippi. Tragedy has become an all-too familiar scene over the years, prompting the park service to post prominent warning signs along the trail for hikers:
DANGER. THE ROCKS ARE COVERED WITH A PLANT GROWTH THAT MAKES THEM EXTREMELY SLIPPERY. TWENTY-FIVE PEOPLE HAVE DIED WHILE CLIMBING ON THESE ROCKS. VIEW THE FALLS FROM DESIGNATED AREAS ONLY.Fences act as barriers between the trail and the falls. Warnings are posted that hikers between 18 and 25 years old are most likely to fit the profile of those who have plunged to their deaths in the past.