Selfie at Yosemite Waterfall Leads to Tragedy


Getting the perfect picture can sometimes place the photographer in a dangerous position and, in the case of selfies, a person is especially vulnerable given that one is both focusing on taking the picture and being its subject.

That’s why it’s always important to exercise caution and stay within bounded limits if they’re posted.

Image via André Cook from

PetaPixel reports that an “extreme selfie” attempt at Yosemite Waterfall in California has ended in the death of a teenager from Israel, 18-year old Tomer Frankfurter from Jerusalem, who then fell 820 feet off the cliff after trying to snap a selfie at the cliff’s edge where he lost his balance and slipped. He fell from the peak of the 594 foot Nevada Fall, a popular location for hikers and tourists that is typically crowded all year long.

On a two-month long family vacation with his mother before his enlistment in the Israeli Defense Forces, Tomer’s tragic death was recounted by her in an article for the Times of Israel.

PetaPixel reports that Yosemite Waterfall Park has signs posted about the dangers of taking photos beyond the railing provided by the park with one poster asking “Is a photo worth dying for?”

This is common in many popular tourist areas that could be potentially dangerous but it doesn’t mean that signs are heeded. Often the need for warning and preventing access is tempered by the park’s desire to maintain the natural beauty of this locations, hence why you don’t often see insurmountable fences at many of these picturesque (but dangerous) spots.

Tragically, death from selfies now outnumber shark attack deaths according to a 2015 statistical analysis reported by the UK’s The Telegraph. The report places death from selfie attempts at being primarily caused by falling or, second most common, being hit by a vehicle.

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Kehl is our staff photography news writer and has over a decade of experience in online media and publishing and you can get to know him better here

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