An afternoon hike in Chaguaramas took a frightening turn for nine people when they were trapped on a riverbank and had to be rescued by fire officers on Sunday.
Newsday understands the hikers, including an eight-year-old boy, made their way to Edith Falls, but were trapped when heavy rain caused the river to flood.
Fire officers said they received a call from one of the hikers at around 2.30 pm. With assistance from the Chaguaramas Fire Station and the Santa Cruz Fire Station Land Search and Rescue Team, they were able to rescue the group within 30 minutes, with no injuries.
Speaking with Newsday, one senior fire official said he was happy the incident was resolved quickly and without injury, but urged the public to be careful and avoid venturing out during heavy rain or when the Met Office had issued bad-weather alerts.
He also urged hikers to check in with the authorities before venturing into remote or unfamiliar areas.
“In this case the hikers would have set out while the weather was favourable, but it’s still cause for caution.
“We don’t expect people to go out in conditions like these, especially with bulletins about riverine flooding. If you have to go out there, make sure you have experienced guides who can get you in and out safely.
“If possible, if you’re going on a hike, check in at the nearest fire station or police station and leave contact numbers so if you haven’t come back out, we can come in and lend some assistance.”
The officer also urged families to take only children who were old enough to walk on their own and able-bodied adults on hikes.