News State SA News Mt Gambier sinkhole lures late-night sightseer to his death

Mt Gambier sinkhole lures late-night sightseer to his death

A natural wonder, the scenic sinkhole tempts observers to jump the safety fence for a closer look. Photo: ABC
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A man has died after falling into a sinkhole in South Australia’s south-east overnight.

Emergency services and police went to the Cave Gardens sinkhole in Mount Gambier just before midnight after receiving reports a man fell in.

Police say the 20-year-old man from Lewiston died at the scene.

The Cave Gardens sinkhole, a state heritage area in the centre of the town, is one of the top tourist attractions in the region, with the council ranking it in its top 10 places to visit.

It is described as an historic garden which flows deep into a sinkhole and features several viewing platforms for visitors.

Limestone Coast LSA inspector Campbell Hill this morning said police suspected the man fell to the base of the sinkhole and was retrieved from the sinkhole just after 3:00am Sunday morning.

“It’s around about a 30-metre drop to the base of the cave … so it did pose quite an issue,” he said. “It’s quite a complex environment to have to work within.”

A 21-year-old man was seriously injured after he fell about 10-metres into the Cave Gardens sinkhole in 2005. Terry Menadue escaped with a broken arm and leg and facial injuries after losing his footing when he jumped a fence to gain a closer look at the sinkhole.