Why Phoenix doesn't have a hot weather 'stupid hiker law'

Posted: Updated:
Hiking in Arizona (Source: 3TV/CBS 5) Hiking in Arizona (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)
PHOENIX (3TV/CBS 5) -

Arizonans experience the extreme heat every summer, with temperatures crawling toward 120 degrees. 

Yet, the Phoenix hiking trails remain open.

[RELATED: Just say NO to hiking in the extreme heat]

While hiking is popular in the Valley, trails can be dangerous, even deadly, when it comes to extreme heat.

Arizona has the "Stupid Motorist Law," but why hasn't there been a "Stupid Hiker Law?"

The main reason is that first responders don’t want people to be afraid of the consequences of calling 911 for help.

[RELATED: Could law deter people from hiking in extreme heat?]

Secondly, it's not logistically feasible to enforce such a law. Robert Mann from Radix Law says that a "Stupid Hiker Law" is just not possible from a law enforcement standpoint.

Supporters of such a law have called for it to be modeled after the "Stupid Motorist Law."  However, with the stupid motorist law, drivers are required to pay for their rescue only after they have driven around a barrier and onto flooded streets.

[RELATED: At least 4 hikers died during record heat in Arizona - June 19, 2016]

There are hundreds of hiking trails with multiple entry and exit points in the Phoenix area. It would be impossible to close trails and put up physical barriers on all of those trails. There is no way to regulate traffic at every point.

[RELATED: Southwest celebrates first day of summer with heat wave]

Mann says that the problem is not consistent enough for a law to be enacted. 

In 2016, the Phoenix Parks and Recreation board rejected a proposal to ban hiking in extreme heat. 

[SPECIAL SECTION: Extreme Heat]

Click/tap here to download the free azfamily mobile app.

Copyright 2017 KPHO/KTVK (KPHO Broadcasting Corporation). All rights reserved.


  • Featured VideoMore>>

  • Hundreds of dead fish stink up Maricopa neighborhood

    Hundreds of dead fish stink up Maricopa neighborhood

    Tuesday, July 17 2018 9:30 AM EDT2018-07-17 13:30:09 GMT
    Hundreds of fish showed up dead at a man-made lake in a Maricopa neighborhood. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)Hundreds of fish showed up dead at a man-made lake in a Maricopa neighborhood. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)
    Hundreds of fish showed up dead at a man-made lake in a Maricopa neighborhood. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)Hundreds of fish showed up dead at a man-made lake in a Maricopa neighborhood. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)

    "The whole lake was carpeted with fish," Tod Antell said.

    More >

    "The whole lake was carpeted with fish," Tod Antell said.

    More >
  • Avondale couple not happy going solar

    Avondale couple not happy going solar

    Tuesday, July 17 2018 9:30 AM EDT2018-07-17 13:30:02 GMT
    The Chavez family say they feel like they were misled. (Source: 3TV)The Chavez family say they feel like they were misled. (Source: 3TV)
    The Chavez family say they feel like they were misled. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)The Chavez family say they feel like they were misled. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)

    An Avondale couple says they were lied to about the benefits of going solar so they called 3 On Your Side to get out of the contract.

    More >

    An Avondale couple says they were lied to about the benefits of going solar so they called 3 On Your Side to get out of the contract.

    More >
  • Former Scottsdale school district CFO under indictment breaks silence

    Former Scottsdale school district CFO under indictment breaks silence

    Tuesday, July 17 2018 9:29 AM EDT2018-07-17 13:29:55 GMT
    Laura Smith has stepped down, but she and her attorney argue that we haven't heard the whole story. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)Laura Smith has stepped down, but she and her attorney argue that we haven't heard the whole story. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)
    Laura Smith has stepped down, but she and her attorney argue that we haven't heard the whole story. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)Laura Smith has stepped down, but she and her attorney argue that we haven't heard the whole story. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)

    The former Chief Financial Officer for the Scottsdale Unified School District has been indicted on fraud and conflict of interest charges. She's accused of approving district payments to her sister's company, and not disclosing the relationship. Laura Smith has since stepped down, but she and her attorney argue that we haven't heard the whole story. 

    More >

    The former Chief Financial Officer for the Scottsdale Unified School District has been indicted on fraud and conflict of interest charges. She's accused of approving district payments to her sister's company, and not disclosing the relationship. Laura Smith has since stepped down, but she and her attorney argue that we haven't heard the whole story. 

    More >