Hiker dies of heat stroke near popular falls

SAN DIEGO -- A 19-year-old woman died after being overcome by heat while hiking on a steep trail to a popular waterfall in East County, county officials said.

Lynn Thu Tran of Escondido began feeling ill and passed out during an outing to Cedar Creek Falls on Monday afternoon, according to sheriff's officials and the county Medical Examiner's Office.

She was airlifted to Palomar Medical Center, where she was pronounced dead shortly after arrival.

An autopsy determined that her cause of death was hyperthermia, or heat stroke, resulting from environmental exposure.

The San Diego County Sheriff's Department said hikers should take special precautions in hot weather, including:

  • Take more water than you think you will need.
  • Stay hydrated before, during and after exercise.
  • Walk or exercise with a partner.
  • Tell someone where you are going and when you expect to return.
  • Bring your cell phone. It could provide a necessary connection to emergency assistance.
  • Wear lightweight, light¿colored and breathable clothing. Bring a hat and sunglasses. Wear sunscreen.
  • Take regular breaks , stopping in the shade if possible.
  • If the heat seems overwhelming, stay inside.
Copyright © 2014, Los Angeles Times
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