Firefighters expect more mountain rescues this week

Posted: Updated:

PHOENIX -- Mountain rescue crews are busy this holiday week, as an influx of inexperienced hikers hit Valley hiking trails.

Three hikers fell and needed help on Monday. A 19-year-old man fell and broke his ankle on Pinnacle Peak late Monday afternoon. The responding rescue crew used a wheel-barrow-type device to carry him down to a waiting ambulance.

At the same time, a rescue crew was helping a woman hike down Camelback Mountain, after she fell and broke her wrist. A third rescue operation took place on a peak near 59th Avenue in northern Glendale.

“We expected this,” said Captain Scott Walker of the Phoenix Fire Department.

The holiday week draws big crowds to the peaks.

“Maybe they feel guilty about eating too much during the holidays. Maybe they’re here visiting family. Maybe they’re in town for the bowl games. But a lot of the time they’re not prepared," Walker said.

Walker says the fire department was expecting even more calls to come in before New Year’s Day.