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State has a safety plan for Kaaterskill Falls

May 07, 2015 9:19 am
Rick Karlin is reporting at Capitol Confidential the state Department of Environmental Conservation is developing a plan to make the Kaaterskill Falls area safer for visitors. Two women fell to their deaths while climbing around the falls last summer, and there have been other similar tragedies over the years. Among the measures recommended by the DEC are the construction of a new, more secure footpath leading to a 200-step stairway to allow safer viewing of the falls, the expansion of two nearby parking areas and the installation of anchors so rescuers can set rescue ropes for pulling people to safety if needed. The parking lots would be expanded to accommodate approximately 50 cars each. Beginning this summer, the DEC will construct a bridge over Spruce Creek, an observation deck and associated spur trail at the top of the falls. The agency will also hire a seasonal steward to educate and interact with visitors at the falls. The changes are contained in a proposed amendment to the Kaaterskill Wild Forest Unit Management Plan. The DEC is taking public comment on the draft through June 5. Read the full story at Capitol Confidential, a Times Union blog.