SAN FRANCISCO (CBS SF) – Two California National Parks – Yosemite and the Golden Gate National Recreational Area — are among the deadliest in the nation, according to a special report by Outside magazine.
Searching through public safety records from January 2006 to September 2016, the magazine researched where, how, and why park visitors suffered fatal accidents.
According to the research, Lake Mead National Recreation Area is the nation’s deadliest park arriving 25 fatalities a year. Rugged terrain and the lake itself accounted for most of the deaths.
As of September 2016, a total of 15 people had died in the park during the year, four of them from drowning.
Yosemite ranks second with 150 deaths over the last decade. The leading cause of death are falls or natural causes, such as cardiac arrest and heart attacks, because park visitors who are not ready for the stresses of hiking in the rugged wilderness.
To many living in the Bay Area the surprise in the top five list would be the Golden Gate National Recreational Area – which includes the Marin Headlands, the Presidio, Ocean Beach and some areas of the San Mateo coast.
Over the study’s span, 85 people have died within the park’s boundaries.
The coastline has proven to be the most dangerous feature of the park with deadly rip currents and sneaker waves leading to drownings.