Phoenix mountain rescues decrease during pilot program to close trails in extreme heat

Sep 21, 2021, 9:49 AM | Updated: 9:57 am
(Twitter Photo/Phoenix Fire Department)...
(Twitter Photo/Phoenix Fire Department)
(Twitter Photo/Phoenix Fire Department)

PHOENIX – A city of Phoenix pilot program to close popular hiking trails during some of the hottest summer days has resulted in fewer mountain rescues for first responders, according to new data.

Since the pilot program took effect July 16 to close trails on days where an excessive heat warning is issued, rescues on Camelback Mountain decreased to four in August after 11 were recorded in July.

Rescues at Piestewa Peak and South Mountain also decreased from July to August.

“When we crunch the numbers, we’re very happy with what we’re seeing,” Phoenix Fire Capt. Rob McDade told KTAR News 92.3 FM on Monday.

The program took effect mid-July after nearly a dozen firefighters were sent home from duty after suffering heat exhaustion after performing multiple heat rescues in one day.

“Not only are we keeping the public safe, but we’re keeping firefighters safe,” McDade said. “We have not had any firefighters transported [to the hospital] or needed treatment from extreme heat rescues.”

The pilot program runs through September 30th.

Once the excessive heat watch trail closure pilot program concludes, the Phoenix Parks and Recreation Board will have an opportunity to review rescue data and hear from stakeholders.

It’s unclear if the pilot program will continue. The Phoenix Parks and Recreation Department says further recommendations will be provided after the review process has been completed.

We want to hear from you.

Have a story idea or tip? Pass it along to the KTAR News team here.

Arizona News

(Getty Images Photo/Roberto Machado Noa)...

Police investigate death of 45-year-old woman shot in Phoenix

Police are investigating the death of a woman who died from a gunshot wound in Phoenix Friday night.
17 hours ago
FILE - In this Wednesday, May 27, 2020 file photo, Medical personnel adjust their personal protecti...

Arizona reports 2,482 new COVID-19 cases, 9 more deaths Saturday

Arizona health officials on Saturday reported 2,482 new COVID-19 cases and nine additional deaths from the disease.
17 hours ago
(Facebook Photo/Phoenix Police Department)...

Woman dies after being struck by vehicle in Phoenix

An adult woman was killed after getting struck by a vehicle near the intersection of East McDowell Road and North 26th Street in Phoenix on Friday night.
17 hours ago
(Facebook photo/City of Phoenix, AZ USA)...

Phoenix adopts roadmap to cut emissions, reach net-zero goal by 2050

The city of Phoenix Tuesday approved a climate action plan with the goal of reaching net-zero by 2050 while also reducing 50% of emissions by 2030. 
17 hours ago
(Facebook photo/Special Olympics Arizona)...

Special Olympics Arizona to kick off fall games next weekend

More than 1,000 Special Olympics athletes across the state will head to the Valley next weekend to compete in the 2021 Fall Games presented by Casino Arizona.
17 hours ago
(Facebook photo/Holiday Light Experience - Salt River Fields)...

Tickets for Holiday Light Experience at Salt River Fields go on sale

People can begin buying their tickets now to the Holiday Light Experience at Salt River Fields in Scottsdale which is set to get underway in November.
17 hours ago

Sponsored Articles

Day & Night Air Conditioning, Heating and Plumbing

Why fall maintenance is important for your heating system and A/C

It’s easy to ignore your heater and air conditioner when they’re working but the moment something breaks, you will likely regret not keeping up with maintenance. After all, if something goes wrong, you may be stuck with a repair that will take longer and be more expensive than simple maintenance.

Grill like a pro this fall with tips from Albertsons

As the weather cools and football season kicks off, it’s a great time to fire up the grill and enjoy your favorite outdoor meals.
Chris Kennedy

My Special Aflac Duck® taking flight in Arizona

For more than 65 years, Aflac has had the extraordinary opportunity and privilege to help provide peace of mind to individuals who have our supplemental insurance policies.
Phoenix mountain rescues decrease during pilot program to close trails in extreme heat