Hiker, 32, dies after running out of water during triple digit heatwave

Dr Evan Dishion, who recently became a father, died of heat exhaustion and heat stroke

Ethan Freedman
Climate Reporter, New York
Wednesday 07 September 2022 16:37 BST
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An Arizona man died during a hike in blazing hot weather over the Labor Day weekend.

Evan Dishion, 32 years old, was hiking with a group of friends outside of Phoenix on Monday when the group ran out of water and got lost.

Temperatures in the Phoenix area reached up to 109 degrees Fahrenheit (43 degrees Celsius) on Monday.

Dr Dishion was a first-year resident at the Barrow Neurological Institute in Phoenix. He had recently become a new father to a daughter, Chloe, according to ABC 15 News.

Five other hikers in the group were also rescued but did not require hospitalization. Captain Dave Folio with the Scottsdale fire department said that their cell phones had died, and they needed to borrow someone else’s to call 911, according to Arizona’s Family.

“I think it was 109 outside, so it was extreme heat. They should have been off the trail three or four hours ago,” Mr Folio said, according to the local news channel.

Mr Dishion was taken to the hospital and later died of heat exhaustion and heat stroke.

Extreme heat like that can quickly lead to serious health issues such as heat stroke, where the body is unable to cool itself down. High temperatures can be especially dangerous for people who may be more vulnerable, like the elderly or those with pre-existing health conditions, but they can affect anyone.

A statement from the Barrow Neurological Institute provided to Arizona’s Family said called Dr Dishion a “kind and generous person who made it his mission and passion to improve the lives of others.”

His wife Amy told ABC 15 News that Dr Dishion was “really thoughtful and self-reflective and intelligent, and he just wanted to help people.”

Much of the Phoenix area remains under an excessive heat warning as extreme heat sweeps through the western US. High temperatures today are expected to reach up to 108F (42C).

California experienced record-high temperatures on Monday and Tuesday this week, courtesy of an intense “heat dome” that has stagnated over the western edge of North America.

Another hiker in the Grand Canyon, in northern Arizona, also died over the weekend after becoming disoriented in triple-digit heat, according to the Associated Press.

Arizona has always been hot — but extreme temperatures and heatwaves are likely to get a lot more common as the climate crisis grows. Phoenix now sees more than 20 days per year with temperatures over 110F (43C), compared to about 15 days per year in 1970, according to the non-profit Climate Central.

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