Search And Rescue Crews Advise Against Hiking In Heat - Palm Springs News, Weather, Traffic, Breaking News

Search And Rescue Crews Advise Against Hiking In Heat

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Cathedral City, CA -

Despite the extreme temperatures in the Coachella Valley, people still go out hiking. The Palm Springs Mounted Police Search and Rescue team said no one should be on the trails this time of year.

"People think they can overcome the elements," said Doug Stevens, a volunteer member of the Palm Springs Mounted Police Search and Rescue team. "You're going to put yourself at risk and then you put us at risk," he added.

The volunteers risk their lives spending hours under the sun searching for distressed hikers.

"Even though we're fresh just starting out, we've had different members with the heat because it's extremely hot here in the desert," Stevens said.

But the desert's heat doesn't stop everyone.

"Five minutes before I came someone called me crazy for doing this," said one Bump and Grind hiker.

Stevens said hikers should be particularly concerned about this summer's heat. 

"This year we've had two deaths already. In 2009 we had 5, and we're only in June," he explained.

Stevens said the best thing you can do to be safe is not to go hiking, but if you must, take a fully charged cellphone.

"Take plenty of water. Let someone know where you are going and when you expect to be back," he said.

Even if you still want to go hiking in the heat, Stevens said he will be there if you need help.

"It's rewarding to go out and rescue someone and help them. I think that's kind of what life's about, isn't it about helping your brother?" he said. 

The Palm Springs Mounted Police Search and Rescue team is run on a volunteer basis. If you would like to donate, you can find more information here.

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