Search and rescue crews urge caution as warm weather returns

Apr 1, 2018, 9:41 AM | Updated: Apr 3, 2018, 12:54 am

DAVIS COUNTY — The Davis County Search and Rescue commander urged hikers to be careful as they start hitting the trails for the first time this season.

Steve Petty has been with the organization for 18 years and said they often see people run into trouble as seasons change. He said people often overestimate their abilities early in the season or may not expect changing weather conditions as they go into higher elevations. Petty said planning is vital.

“They don’t understand how cold it gets at night, and they never anticipate being stuck somewhere and then they get stuck and now it’s cold and they’re not dressed for it,” he said.

Petty said his organization has had a busy start to the season. Salt Lake County Search and Rescue has also received several calls. Petty said waterfalls are a common trouble spot.

“Everybody wants to see a waterfall. They’re great places to go for a hike, or to take pictures, maybe propose to your fiancé, but they’re not good places to get on top of. Some people climb up on top of them or go to a place that’s not safe and gravity takes you down. Just view them from a safe location,” he said.

Petty also wanted people to be aware of the dangers of water as spring progresses and the snow runoff increases.

“Snow melts. The streams get swollen. The water’s really cold and moving fast. Little kids around that water, they don’t know just how dangerous it is, so keep a hand on them anytime you have a kid around water, especially if it’s moving water,” he said.

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Search and rescue crews urge caution as warm weather returns