Slab in deadly Yosemite rockfall was 'size of an apartment building'

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Slab in deadly Yosemite rockfall was 'size of an apartment building'

One person was reported dead and another injured as a result, according to a park ranger.

Kevin Jorgeson said he and climbing partner Tommy Caldwell once witnessed a massive rock fall in the same area while they prepared for a trek that made them the first people to free-climb the Dawn Wall on El Capitan in 2015.

Seven rockfalls occurred over a four-hour time span, with the initial rockfall happening at 1:52 p.m., officials said.

Rescuers found no other victims.

Currently, Yosemite is in the peak of its climbing season with larger numbers of climbers climbing various routes.

"We saw a huge plume of smoke from the summit of Half Dome and later found out it was a fatal rockfall", he told CNN.

Sixteen people have been killed and more than 100 people have been hurt by rockfalls since park records began in 1857.

Officials did not identify the person who was killed or the person who was injured.

Yosemite remained open after Wednesday's rock fall, and other activities throughout the park weren't affected, rangers said.

Images showed a woman being carried into a helicopter by two rescue workers. "When someone said it was a rockfall, I immediately thought of the climbers and knew it could be potentially bad".

Canadian climber Peter Zabrok says he saw a piece white granite the size of an apartment building suddenly peel off the wall. The injured victim was transported out of Yosemite to receive medical treatment.

He has tried to reduce the hazard of rockfalls by moving buildings and places where hikers congregate away from cliffs from which rocks might tumble, according to the Smithsonian.

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