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The Solfatara volcano is one of many volcanic craters in the Campi Flegrei area, 20 km (12 miles) west of Naples, which first opened up to tourists in 1900, according to its website.

Three family members died after falling into a volcanic crater near Naples, Italy, Tuesday morning.

Firefighters and police officers stand by an ambulance on the site where three people reportedly died when they fell into a crater in a steamy volcanic field in Pozzuoli, near Naples.

Italian reports identified them as Massimiliano Carrer, Tiziana Zaramella and their son, Lorenzo.

The couple's other son, a 7-year-old boy, managed to get to safety.

"I saw a child run crying, I did not think I was facing the worst tragedy of my life", said eye witness Diego Vitagliano.

"We tried to calm him, of course he was very shocked", he said of the 7-year-old boy who escaped. They pulled out two bodies, then pulled us away. "I continue to think about that family and that poor baby crying and asking for help".

Emergency crews were said to have arrived within minutes of the tragedy.

"I express my closeness from the community of Pozzuoli to the family of the victims".

The dormant Solfatara, which last erupted in 1198, has a shallow crater and emits steam with sulphurous fumes.

"I've been here for 40 years and such an accident has never happened", Armando Guerriero, owner of the bar, said to ANSA.

The boy's parents tried to save him but the crater collapsed, The Guardian wrote.