A 60-year-old man has become the fifth person to die while hiking in Hong Kong this year. He and eight others had set off from Wu Kau Tang in the northeastern New Territories. The man collapsed and did not regain consciousness after being airlifted to hospital. Photo: Google Map, HK Govt

A 60-year-old male hiker collapsed and died while attempting one of the most demanding trails in Hong Kong during Sunday’s heatwave.

Chan Siu-fai, who had migrated to the US territory of Guam in the western Pacific 20 years ago, had returned to Hong Kong to visit friends on April 12, Apple Daily reported.

He is the fifth person to die in hiking-related incidents on the city’s trails over the first four months of 2017, exceeding the total of four deaths in all of 2016.

Chan collapsed at 2:40pm on Sunday while trekking with a group of eight hikers through Plover Cove Country Park in Tai Po District in the northeast New Territories. He complained of feeling dizzy, before losing consciousness.

The group had set out from Wu Kau Tang at 8:30am and planned to reach Hung Shek Mun.

The man was airlifted to Pamela Youde Nethersole Eastern Hospital where he was confirmed dead.

Police said initial investigations suggest that the man had died from heat exhaustion, Sing Pao reported.

The Hong Kong Observatory recorded a maximum temperature of 30.2 degrees on Sunday, the hottest day of the year so far.

The scenic area’s rugged landscape and mountainous terrain make it popular with hikers year round.

Hiking-related accidents and injuries have increased in Hong Kong, as the pastime has become gained in popularity.

Hiker numbers steadily rose from 12.2 million in 2005/06 to 13.3 million in 2015/16. Meanwhile, the number of mountain rescues more than doubled from 138 in 2005 to 357 last year.

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