On 28 April 1995 17 members of a party of students from the Outdoor Recreation course at Tai Poutini Polytechnic at Greymouth and the Department of Conservation's Punakaiki Field Centre Manager crowded onto the viewing platform high above Cave Creek. The platform collapsed and fell about 30 metres into the resurgence below.
As a result 14 young people lost their lives and the other four were injured, some very seriously. As with most multiple tragedies, the effect has been profound. Not only have family members and relatives suffered but, because New Zealand is such a small country, many people know of someone who was involved.