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Zion National Park rangers treat unresponsive hiker who was later pronounced dead

On the afternoon of Janu­ary 26, Zion National Park received a report of an unresponsive hiker on the West Rim Trail near Scout Lookout. Rangers immedi­ately responded and hiked to the patient with medical equipment including an au­tomated external defibrilla­tor (AED) and a heart moni­tor. When they reached the patient, visitors with emergency medical train­ing were performing CPR and directing other visitors who assisted.


File photo of Zion National Park search and rescue vehicle. NPS Image / Jonathan Shafer.

Rangers treated the pa­tient. After nearly an hour and a half administering CPR, treatment with the AED and checking their condition with the heart monitor, the park consulted with a doctor (medical control) and the patient was pronounced dead. The patient was a 63-year-old man from San Diego, Calif.


“All of us at Zion extend our deepest condolences to this hiker’s family,” said Superintendent Jeff Bradybaugh. “We also want to express thanks to the bystanders who assisted by performing CPR.”

The West Rim Trail, which temporarily closed for rescue operations, is now open.



Zion National Park’s re­sponse involved more than 20 search and rescue team members, including emer­gency medical technicians and paramedics and the park ambulance.


Based on information available at this time, the cause of death is consistent with a cardiac event. The Washington County Sher­iff’s Office, Utah Office of the Medical Examiner and the National Park Service are still investigating the cause of the man’s death.

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