Phoenix Firefighters Warn Hikers of Heat Danger

The Phoenix firefighters who specialize in mountain rescues have a singular concern that rises each year as temperatures begin to creep upward: Hikers who think they can brave the heat, reports

This year those foolhardy hikers are of particular concern for firefighters who have rescued almost as many stranded hikers through the first 6½ months of the year — 133 — as they did in all of 2013, when there were 153 mountain rescues, according to the Phoenix Fire Department.

Two hikers have died on Phoenix mountains this year.

With an excessive-heat warning in place in the Valley from 10 a.m. Wednesday until 8 p.m. Thursday, Phoenix fire officials recommend residents avoid going outside between 8 a.m. and 10 p.m. during the next few days.

“People who live here are the ones who push it,” said Shelly Jamison, public affairs division chief of the Phoenix Fire Department.

She said many hikers do not realize they are dehydrated and then become disoriented. And more often than not, it is another hiker who has to make the call about someone in trouble, she said.

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