Two female hikers found dead in Nevada state park

Two female hikers were found dead in a state park in southern Nevada on Saturday afternoon, as a deadly summer heatwave continues to bake the southwestern US.

Nevada State Police said they were called to perform a welfare check after a group of hikers reported that the women had failed to return from a hike in the Valley of Fire State Park, about 65 miles north of Las Vegas.

Officers arrived at around 2.48pm and requested a Search and Rescue team from the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department.

Search teams discovered a woman’s body on a trail in the state park, and found the second woman deceased in a canyon. Officials have not released their identities or any further information about how they died.

Nevada State Police is investigating the deaths.

Southern Nevada remains under an excessive heat warning, and temperatures reached 114F (46C) in the state park on Saturday, officials said.

A punishing heatwave caused by the climate crisis is believed to have killed five people in national parks since 1 June — more than the usual number of fatalities in a year — according to figures from the National Park Service.

The deaths occurred in temperatures exceeding 100F (38C) across three national parks —Death ValleyinCalifornia,Texas’ Big Bend, and theGrand Canyon National ParkinArizona.

On 18 July, 71-year-old hiker Steve Curry was pronounced dead after collapsing outside of a restroom on the Golden Canyon trailhead in Death Valley.

In Clark County, Nevada, there had been seven heat-related as of mid-July, according to the Southern Nevada Health District.

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