A man raises his arms atop graffiti-covered rocks at Sapphire Falls in Cucamonga Canyon in the Angeles National Forest near Rancho Cucamonga, California. (David McNew/Getty Images)

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Chasing “Likes” On Social Media Often Ends In Broken Limbs and Rescues

The L.A. County Sheriff’s Department’s Search and Rescue teams conducted 681 missions in 2017.

Hikers in Los Angeles, often inexperienced and under-prepared, have been trying to get “likes” and shares on social media sites like Instagram by doing dangerous and poorly-planned stunts, which has led to a significant increase in rescue missions by first responders.

The Los Angeles Times reports that the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department’s Search and Rescue teams conducted 681 missions in 2017, which is the largest number in five years. This is a 38 percent increase from the 491 rescues they did in 2013.

The teams say the single largest factor for that increase is people posting videos of extreme activities online. Rescue teams in Santa Barbara and San Bernardino are also reporting similar increases.

“People will post videos of themselves jumping off of Hermit Falls or the Malibu rock pool, and they post it in the springtime when there’s a decent amount of water. But now, the water is a lot less, so what used to be a 10-foot pool is now a 5-foot pool,” said Michael Leum, who oversees the Sheriff Department’s Search and Rescue teams, to The Los Angeles Times. “You don’t want to be a lawn dart going into that shallow pool.”

Read the full story at The Los Angeles Times