Government Shutdown Creates Dangerous Situation at National Parks
This post contains references to products from one or more of our advertisers. We may receive compensation when you click on links to those products. Terms apply to the offers listed on this page. For an explanation of our Advertising Policy, visit this page.
As the US government shutdown lingers on, the impacts are being felt nationwide. At airports, the TSA is facing its own problems. For those wanting to visit national parks, the shutdown poses some real risks. In an unusual move, the administration chose to leave the national parks open, but with severely reduced staff or having no staff at all.
National parks aren’t exactly the safest place on the planet to start with. The very nature of the landscapes that attract millions of visitors each year can be dangerous. According to the National Park Service, an average of six people die each week at national parks, although that number includes incidents like car crashes and medical emergencies such as heart attacks.
With the parks remaining open with little to no staff on site, that level of danger has increased. Since the government shut down, there have been three reported deaths at national parks. On Dec. 21, a 14-year-old girl fell some 700 feet at Horseshoe Bend Overlook in Arizona. In California’s Yosemite, a man succumbed to head trauma following a fall in the park. And, in the Great Smokey Mountains National Park, a woman died after being struck by a falling tree.
While the National Park Service has closed off some of the more high-risk areas, the parks themselves remain open. This is a departure from previous protocol, which saw national parks closed during shutdowns. Without proper staffing levels at the parks, visitors have free reign in the parks to disregard park rules and guidelines, with no one there to step in and take corrective actions.
With no staff and extended times for emergency responders to reach remote locations, it’s important that visitors take extra precautions while visiting the parks during the current shutdown. Understand that should something happen, emergency responses will be delayed in reaching you because the staff simply isn’t in place to provide help in a timely manner. With no deal in the foreseeable future on the reopening of the US federal government, these dangerous conditions will persist at national parks across the US.
H/T: The Washington Post
Featured Photo via Smith Collection/Gado/Getty Images
Welcome to The Points Guy!
Earn 90,000 bonus miles after you spend $3,000 in purchases within the first three months of card membership. Plus, earn a $200 statement credit after your first Delta purchase within the first three months. Offer ends 7/28/21.
With Status Boost™, earn 10,000 Medallion Qualification Miles (MQMs) after you spend $25,000 in purchases on your Card in a calendar year, up to two times per year getting you closer to Medallion Status. Earn 3X Miles on Delta purchases and purchases made directly with hotels, 2X Miles at restaurants and at U.S. supermarkets and earn 1X Mile on all other eligible purchases. Terms Apply.
- Limited Time Offer: Earn 90,000 Bonus Miles after spending $3,000 in purchases on your new Card in your first 3 months and a $200 statement credit after you make a Delta purchase with your new Card within your first 3 months. Offer expires 7/28/2021.
- Limited Time Offer: Plus, get a 0% intro APR on purchases for 12 months from the date of account opening, then a variable 15.74%-24.74%. Offer expires 7/28/2021.
- Accelerate your path to Medallion Status, with Status Boost®. Plus, in 2021 you can earn even more bonus Medallion® Qualification Miles (MQMs) to help you reach Medallion Status.
- Earn 3X Miles on Delta purchases and purchases made directly with hotels.
- Earn 2X Miles at restaurants worldwide, including takeout and delivery and at U.S. supermarkets.
- Receive a Domestic Main Cabin round-trip companion certificate each year upon renewal of your Card. *Payment of the government imposed taxes and fees of no more than $75 for roundtrip domestic flights (for itineraries with up to four flight segments) is required. Baggage charges and other restrictions apply. See terms and conditions for details.
- Enjoy your first checked bag free on Delta flights.
- Fee Credit for Global Entry or TSA Pre✓®.
- Enjoy an exclusive rate of $39 per person per visit to enter the Delta Sky Club® for you and up to two guests when traveling on a Delta flight.
- No Foreign Transaction Fees.
- $250 Annual Fee.
- Terms Apply.
- See Rates & Fees