Teen, Grandma Swept Away on Family Grand Canyon Trip

Search parties are trying to locate them
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Apr 17, 2017 4:14 PM CDT
Teen, Grandma Swept Away on Family Grand Canyon Trip
This Oct. 22, 2012, file photo shows a view from the South Rim of the Grand Canyon National Park in Ariz.   (AP Photo/Rick Bowmer, File)

Authorities searched Grand Canyon National Park on Monday for a teenager and his step-grandmother who were swept away as they tried to cross a creek during a family trip in a remote part of the park, the AP reports. Two fellow hikers in their group alerted officials over the weekend by setting off an emergency GPS locator beacon in the backcountry below the canyon's North Rim, according to Chief Ranger Matt Vandzura of the National Park Service. He said the 14-year-old boy and 62-year-old woman lost their footing and were swept away Saturday in Tapeats Creek, a tributary of the Colorado River that runs through the Arizona landmark.

Vandzura said it's too early in the investigation to determine what went wrong. No rain or flash flooding was reported in the area, but it was not known whether the water level of the creek was higher than usual. Creeks in the canyon often see higher water levels in the spring as snow melts, Vandzura said. An Arizona Department of Public Safety helicopter searched for the missing pair Saturday night, and the Park Service sent a helicopter and several ground crews to comb the area Sunday. The Park Service resumed the search Monday with ground crews, a helicopter and a drone. (More Grand Canyon stories.)

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