ATCEMS responds to ten land rescues in seven days

ATCEMS responded to 10 land rescues in just one week to help lost, injured and sick hikers. 

Medics said it’s important to plan ahead before taking a hike to avoid winding up in a dangerous situation.

“We have access point locations along different locations on the greenbelt, so it's not really difficult for us to get there, we just need to know where you are,” said district commander Bryan Fitzpatrick. "That's why it's important to have your phone with you."

One of the issues that medics are seeing more of is heat-related calls. 

“With the summer season coming up, and people wanting to get outside and enjoy Austin more, people need to be cognizant of how hot it is going to be,” Fitzpatrick said.  

There are plenty of ways hikers can fight back against the heat and humidity, according to Fitzpatrick. 

“Things like wearing lightweight, light-colored clothing, taking frequent breaks, drinking lots of water, avoiding alcohol and caffeine, and also trying to time your activities for either earlier in the day or later after the sun sets so you're not out in the heat of the day,” said Fitzpatrick.   

Some hikers said they do think twice about what to bring when they plan to spend a day in the sun. 

“Just always be prepared with some water, you know, just always have it. Tastes good,” said Sami Blumenthal who recently moved to Austin from Chicago. 

ATCEMS said it's important to look out for signs of heat exhaustion including light-headedness, weakness, nausea, changes in pulse and clammy skin. 

“You want to go ahead and stop and take a break, things like that can also progress to heat stroke which is a much more serious situation where you start having a change in your mentation,” Fitzpatrick said. 

Other tips include wearing sturdy shoes, keeping an eye on mile markers, telling someone where you are and when you'll be back, checking the weather and packing any medications you may need.