Calls up for Chilliwack Search and Rescue, including 6 in 1 day
CHILLIWACK, B.C. -- A search and rescue team in B.C.'s Fraser Valley says the kick-off to the long weekend was one of their busiest days on record.
Calls to Chilliwack Search and Rescue are already up over last year, including six calls in one day on July 31.
Search and Rescue manager Dave Casey said the high volume on Friday was unusual, but there was no one problem area. The calls were a mix of issues, including an injured climber and hiker, calls for missing people, and two requests for help on the Vedder River.
"I think we're a dozen calls above where we were last year," Casey said. "Our sense is that there just seems to be more people out in the wilderness this year."
The team of volunteers normally sees about 80 calls a year. So far this year, they've already responded to 65.
"So we're definitely on target to be higher than that this year," Casey said, and added they're not sure exactly why there have been more people needing help. "I thought that we might be slower this year because we didn't have as many people from outside of the country coming to visit, but it's certainly been the opposite."
Casey said they are seeing camping and recreation sites "completely full."
"It certainly feels busier than it has been, and I don't know if it just the sheer numbers, or if it's people that aren't as accustomed to being out in the outdoors, or in our area," Casey said.
Chilliwack Search and Rescue is reminding people to be prepared before they head out: make a trip plan, tell others where you're going, and don't attempt anything above your abilities.
"There are times where people that are very well-trained will get themselves into trouble and get injured, but at the same time we see people who get in over their head," Casey said. "Especially in the water we see that, and that can have devastating consequences, that's for sure."