A Brazilian tourist has died in Argentina after being crushed by a falling slab of ice in a cave on the outskirts of the southern city of Ushuaia, judicial sources confirmed Thursday.
The accident occurred on Wednesday afternoon at around 4pm when a group of visitors entered the so-called Jimbo Cave ("Cueva de Jimbo") in Valle de Andorra, a natural formation located in an area of glaciers where access is prohibited due to the instability of rocks and ice fragments.
The tragedy was recorded by one of the tourists on video, which was later showed by many local media outlets. In the clip, members of the group are seen entering the cave slowly before part of an ice sheet breaks loose and falls on an individual who was leading the walk.
The video clip also shows a sign with the legend "Warning, do not enter," displayed several metres before the entrance to the cave.
Rescuers from the Ushuaia Relief Commission confirmed the death, working with members of the local police and civil defence services. The case has been referred to a court in Ushuaia headed by Judge Javier De Gamas Soler, who ordered an immediate autopsy of the victim, the Télam state news agency reported.
The judge is expected to quiz all seven members of the touring party who were present at the time of the tragedy.
The identity of the deceased has not been disclosed, but judicial sources cited by the local press outlets indicate that he is a man holding Brazilian nationality.
Jimbo Cave is located in an area of renowned natural beauty within the Tierra del Fuego National Park, located around some 3,100 kilometres south of the Argentine capital. It is only accessible by a long hike.
Since 2021, park officials have warned visitors and residents of the dangers of on entering the cave based on scientific studies that warned that it is at risk of collapse. Entry is prohibited.