Could selfies secure hikers’ safety?

Image via Thinkstock
Image via Thinkstock

Coquitlam Search and Rescue and North Shore Rescue disagree on ‘trailhead selfies’

By Angela Espinoza, News Editor

Coquitlam Search and Rescue has urged those going on hiking trails to take photos of themselves prior to hikes and post them with the hashtag #TrailheadSelfie before heading out.

Search and rescue volunteer Michael Coyle spoke with the Georgia Straight, saying that hikers should turn off their cellphones to save power. He also stated that the social media posts could be the difference in helping find hikers who go missing. “Without fail, when people call for help, their batteries are just about dead,” said Coyle.

Because some social media sites use time stamps on posts, it’s possible for hikers to be “geotracked.”

Coyle also stressed that it’s important for hikers to have a set travel plan prior to hikes in the event that something goes wrong.

However, the Georgia Straight also reported that North Shore Rescue disagrees with the “trailhead selfie” plan.

Curtis Jones of North Shore Rescue stated that just taking a selfie could make hikers think that’s all they’ll need to do to guarantee their safety.

“They may do it [take selfies] instead of telling someone where they’re going,” said Jones. “It doesn’t really solve a lot of the problems that we’ve been facing.”