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Two Suffer Thermal Burns In Separate Incidents

Yellowstone National Park

National Park News

Two park visitors suffered thermal burns in separate incidents this past Friday and Saturday. A 50-year old visitor from Spain was burned on Friday, August 12th, after stepping through a thin crust in a thermal area while walking around Potts Basin near West Thumb. The incident occurred at around 6:30 p.m. The woman and her family were touring the park when they stopped at Potts Basin. The entire family was off-trail in a closed area, walking around, when the woman stepped through a thin crust into hot water.  She received second degree burns to her left foot and ankle. Family members hiked out of the area and drove to the registration desk at Grant Village to report the incident and seek medical attention. Park EMS staff immediately responded, stabilized the victim¬ís injuries, and transported her by ambulance to St. John's Hospital in Jackson, Wyoming. On Saturday afternoon, a 49-year old park visitor from New Hampshire was burned after stepping into a hot muddy area while walking off-trail near Lone Star Geyser in the Old Faithful area. The man and his family were touring the park when they stopped at Lone Star Geyser. The entire family was off-trail, walking around the area, when the man stepped into some hot mud. He received second degree burns to the top of his left foot up and around his left ankle and lower calf. Family members hiked out of the area and drove to the Old Faithful Ranger Station to report the incident and seek medical attention.  Park EMS staff again responded, treated him, and took him to the same hospital. These were the second and third visitors to receive thermal burns during the 2005 summer season. The park has again issued reminders to visitors that, for their own safety, it is important to stay on boardwalks and designated trails while viewing all thermal features in the park. Scalding water underlies thin, breakable crusts; many geyser eruptions are unpredictable; and thermal features are near or above boiling temperatures.  Boardwalks and trails help protect park visitors and prevent damage to delicate formations. 


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