4 rescues in one week prove the need to be prepared on a New York hike. No matter how careful you are, accidents happen. And when you're hiking trails in New York being prepared for an emergency can be the difference between life or death.

Forest Rangers with the New York Department of Environmental Conservation handled 4 situations in the same week that could have easily gone either way. Two involved medical emergencies while the other two dealt with being lost on a trail.

The medical emergencies involved a man who had fallen in the Town of Henderson. He was fortunate enough to be with companions who knew CPR and with the assistance of Rangers and 1st Responders from Jefferson County they were able to get the subject to a local hospital.

The 2nd medical emergency involved an ankle injury a mile-and-a-half from the trailhead. When you can't walk, even with one companion it's difficult to cover that much ground. Rangers were able to stabilize the injury and assist them back to their vehicle.

While medical emergencies are scary being lost in the wilderness can be just as unnerving. That was the case for two young women who became disoriented while hiking trails in 2 separate areas. One was in Dutchess County and the other in the Town of Inlet. In both instances, it took Rangers a minimum of 2 hours to find the lost hikers and get them to their car. That's especially nerve-wracking if it's getting close to sundown.

Some hiking safety tips are basic; don't hike alone, tell someone where you're going and make sure your phone is fully charged. Even if you're hiking in the daytime, take a flashlight just in case. Put a bottle of water and a healthy snack in a backpack too. The DEC has other hiking safety tips that may not seem so obvious but could be vitally important in an emergency.

SOURCE: New York Department of Environmental Conservation

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