Firefighter pulls woman out of Bali volcano crater after she fell 40 meters down

Still from footage: John Conway/Midlands Rescue
Still from footage: John Conway/Midlands Rescue

An English firefighter rescued a woman after she fell 40 meters into the crater of Mount Batur, a volcano in Bali.

Yes, Mount Batur is active, but no it is not the rumbling Mount Agung that’s been erupting over the past several months. Batur is rated “normal” on the lowest alert level for an eruption, whereas Mount Agung is currently on the second highest level, “standby.”

English firefighter John Conway had no idea about the ordeal that was ahead of him when he went to climb Mount Batur on Saturday night. Batur is a popular hike amongst tourists, who climb up overnight to summit to the crater in time to catch remarkable sunrise views of the island.

The night of the hike, it seemed Conway’s biggest challenge would be “Bali belly,” or an “upset stomach and no immodium” as he put it on his Facebook page.

But little did he know he would have to use his disaster response skills to save the day whilst on the hike.

Conway had already summited when a woman fell from a viewing platform into the crater. After determining that he was the only one with any medical training directly at the scene, Conway says he asked guides at the top the safest way to get down to the fallen woman and so began his descent.

After about 20 minutes of climbing down, the 33-year-old found the woman wounded with trauma to the head, an open leg fracture, an ankle injury, three broken ribs, a fractured spine and a broken nose, Conway told his local news site, Birmingham Live.

It took five hours for a group of people taking turns to get the woman down the 1,717-meter-high mountain on a stretcher.

“Given the state in which we found her, and the extent of her injuries, it’s a miracle she survived. It’s unbelievable,” Conway said.

The Brit added that she was taken to the hospital where she will be treated before going home. 

Conway took to Facebook on Wednesday to thank all the “people that were so far out of their comfort zones assisting.”

“We all worked to exhaustion, from the Bali local guides racing and giving everything to help.”

He also went on to praise “Claire,” the woman who fell: “She is genuinely the bravest/ strongest and toughest woman I have ever come across and how she stayed with it, is remarkable.”

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