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Mountain climbers see the light

[ 2009-11-23 13:44]     字号 [] [] []  
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Lost mountain climbers will benefit from as many as 131 solar-powered locator beacons in 15 important scenic areas in Beijing.

The 8-m-tall solar-powered beacons emit a light at night to help lost travelers. Each beacon carries a unique number so police can easily determine the climber's position.

In addition, they are all equipped with cell phone chargers.

The installation of beacons follows the increasing popularity of mountain climbing among Beijingers. Lvye Rescue Union, an outdoor rescue team founded by a group of mountaineering fans in 2007, has already organized almost 10 rescue activities in this year alone.

However, a member of the union said the beacons would only benefit people who visit those relatively well-developed scenic areas.

The expert, known as Xiaoye, told METRO: "For those who love adventure, the function of these beacons will be rather limited."

Usually, mountain climbers prefer undeveloped areas, Xiaoye explained.

He added that at night they might be able to see the solar-powered beacons at a distance, but they wouldn't be able to reach them because of the complete darkness.

The Beijing Morning Post reported on Nov 8 that a couple lost their way when trying to descend a mountain in Mentougou district.

At approximately sunset, they dialed 110 for assistance.

Although they couldn't inform police of their exact position, they did manage to say where they had started climbing and for how long they had been on the mountain.

The police were forced to estimate the climbers' location but this slowed the rescue activity. The climbers finally arrived at the nearest police station at 9.30 pm, guided by the light of their cell phones.

Mentougou district attracts mountain climbers every year, resulting in a large number of rescue cases. Forty-two of the 131 solar-powered beacons will be placed there.


(英语点津 Helen 编辑)

Mountain climbers see the light

About the broadcaster:

Mountain climbers see the light

Nancy Matos is a foreign expert at China Daily Website. Born and raised in Vancouver, Canada, Nancy is a graduate of the Broadcast Journalism and Media program at the British Columbia Institute of Technology. Her journalism career in broadcast and print has taken her around the world from New York to Portugal and now Beijing. Nancy is happy to make the move to China and join the China Daily team.