• The woman fell about 90 feet into the gorge but did not reach its bottom
  • Her 5-year-old sustained a head injury
  • They are believed to be tourists visiting the area

A woman died after she jumped into the Niagara Gorge with her 5-year-old child Monday, New York State Parks officials said. The boy survived the falls but sustained a head injury.

Officials said the unidentified woman climbed over the railing on Goat Island and fell from its edge with her son at around 1 p.m. Monday. Rescuers had to make their way through slippery and rocky terrain to retrieve them, CBS-affiliated WIVB reported.

State Parks Police Capt. Chris Rola said the woman and her child were with her husband before they jumped from the gorge. The circumstances that led to the incident are unclear, but officials believe the fall was not an accident, local radio station WBEN reported.

Rola said the woman plummeted about 90 feet down but did not reach the bottom of the gorge. Officials administered CPR to the mother, however, she was pronounced dead at the scene.

"Unfortunately, the female did not make it," Rola said, adding that the body was flown from the state park to the coroner's office in a helicopter. "The investigation is ongoing, but we don't believe it is an accident."

The child was rescued and was rushed to a hospital in Buffalo with a head injury.

"Our rescuers, along with Niagara Falls Fire Department, were able to reach pretty quickly both of the victims," the police officer said as he gave details about the rescue operation.

"Although today it's nice out, it's very icy down there," he continued. "It's real tough terrain that our guy and our girls were able to get through and get to them and provide that life-saving care and do everything they could but, as far as putting other people at risk, we were going to make every effort for that child that was still alive at the time."

Witnesses told investigators that the woman jumped over the railing that was meant to be a safety barrier.

The identities of the mother and child were not immediately released. Some outlets said they were tourists visiting the spot.

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Representational image (Police line)
Representational image (Source: Pixabay / ValynPi14)