Man presumed dead after falling into Yellowstone hot spring

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The search is still on for a man who fell into a hot spring at Yellowstone National Park.

Witnesses said the man, described as being in his early 20s, walked off the boardwalk and into the hot spring in the Norris Geyser Basin on Tuesday afternoon. Officials didn’t say whether the man was a tourist.

“At this time, rangers are treating this incident as a probable fatality because the victim has not been located,” Jody Lyle, a spokeswoman for the park, said several hours later.

Authorities closed the basin and were proceeding with caution because of the heat around the springs.

The park website describes the site as the hottest thermal area in Yellowstone.

Over the weekend, a 13-year-old boy burned his ankle and foot when he fell into a hot pool in Yellowstone’s Upper Geyser Basin. His father slipped while carrying him, the Billings Gazette reported.

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1 Comment

  • Andrew

    Do we really need to wait until ALL the horses are gone before we shut the barn door?

    The Declaration of Independence is a national treasure, but we do not allow unfettered access to it so that every idiot who walks in the door can sign their name at the bottom of it with a Sharpie. Why not? Because that would spoil the national treasure for everyone else.

    It is no different with Yellowstone. It is a national treasure, and all should be allowed to view what makes it so. But not everyone should be allowed to participate in physically interacting with it, any more than we allow just anyone to physically interact with the Declaration of Independence. Such contact must be limited, and human behavior over the last couple decades has indicated that it would be prudent to more severely restrict the ability of just anyone to physically interact with many aspects of Yellowstone. If the advent of the internet has shown us one thing it is the “viral” nature of certain human behaviors. We do not want “suicide by Yellowstone” to become one of those trends…a means by which shallow and desperate minds believe they can attain fame and immortality.

    Access to Yellowstone must be limited much in the same way that we limit access to other national treasures. Priority to those with legitimate professional interest, and severe physical controls placed on everyone else. If that means issuing a limited number of public passes every year via a lottery system, fine. If that means prohibiting personal vehicles in the park and making tourists ride in ranger-operated safari trains/busses, fine. But we can not allow Yellowstone to become a public free-for-all. It has to stop, and it has to stop now. If the park needs to close certain features, or even close completely, to the public while a solution is formulated and put into place, do it. It is too important to screw around with.