Influencer Sophia Cheung dies while trying to take waterfall selfie in Hong Kong park

Sophia Cheung poses in a photo posted to her Instagram account, dated March 18, 2021. Sophia Cheung/Instagram

Social media influencer Sophia Cheung died last weekend after attempting to take a selfie in front of a waterfall at Hong Kong’s Ha Pak Lai park, according to multiple reports.

The 32-year-old was well-known on Instagram for her sometimes risqué, picturesque selfies, which were often snapped at the edge of cliffs or in other precarious positions. As of this writing, Cheung had almost 35,000 followers on her account.

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Cheung was with her friends at the park on Saturday, July 10 when she decided to take a picture next to the falls. She lost her footing, say witnesses, and fell approximately five metres (16 feet) into the falls’ pool below.

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Reports say Cheung’s friends immediately called for medical help and first responders were quickly on-scene, but she was pronounced dead at hospital.

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The last photo on her Instagram account shows her in some shallow water with a bodyboard.

“Life should be fun not dumb,” reads her profile bio.

The influencer’s manner of death is unfortunately nothing new; “death by selfie” is becoming more and more common.

At least 18 people were killed by a lightning strike while taking selfies in India last week, Reuters reports. The tourists in the group were standing on a watchtower when it was hit. Three U.K. siblings miraculously escaped serious injury after they were struck by lightning while attempting to take a selfie on July 12.

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The National Center for Biotechnology Information (NCBI) released study findings in 2018 that showed 259 selfie-related deaths were reported worldwide that year, most of which were attributed to “risky” behaviour.

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