September 17, 2015
Contact: David Eaker
Springdale, UT- Search and Rescue personnel have located the body of the last missing canyoneer from Keyhole Canyon. This brings the total fatalities to 7. The names of the individuals have not been released at this time and will be released once the family and next of kin have been notified.
On Monday, September 14, 2015, Rangers received a report of a group of seven individuals canyoneering in Keyhole Canyon shortly before the area flooded. Zion recorded 0.63 inches of rain and the North Fork of the Virgin River rose from 55 cubic feet per second to 2,630 cubic feet per second in 15 minutes. Extensive search efforts were not possible during the flooding or while the threat of flooding was still present. On Wednesday, September 16, 2015, two additional individuals were located. As weather conditions improved in the park, rescuers were able to locate the last missing person on Thursday, September 17, 2015.
During the Search and Rescue Operations, over 60 searchers from multiple agencies have contributed over 760 hours in their efforts to find the missing people. Agencies assisting Zion National Park include Washington County Search and Rescue, Kane County Search and Rescue, Sanpete County Search and Rescue, Washington County Deputies, Town of Springdale, Rockville-Springdale Fire Protection District, Rocky Mountain Rescue Dogs, the Color Country Interagency Fire Center, Bryce Canyon National Park, Cedar Breaks National Monument, Glen Canyon National Recreation Area, Grand Canyon National Park, and Grand Canyon-Parashant National Monument.
"Our condolences go out to the family and friends of the canyoneers," said Superintendent Jeff Bradybaugh.