Search and rescue operations in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park have cost taxpayers between $40,000 and more than a half-million dollars in recent years.
While there are periodic discussions of trying to get some of that money back from people who've been found, a National Park Service official says most people couldn't afford it.
The most expensive year in recent times was 1993, when search costs were $550,000.
Nearly half of that was spent on the search for 13-year-old Brad Lavies of Birmingham, Alabama. The search lasted a week and the boy's body was recovered at the base of a small waterfall in the park.
Park spokesman Bob Miller says most of the 50 to 70 searches and rescues each year are much less expensive.