Fact Check

Does This Photograph Show a Suspension Bridge Warning Sign?

A sign in Costa Rica warn supposedly warns hikers that a suspension bridge can hold ten people but only three Americans.

Published Aug 19, 2015

A sign on a suspension bridge in Costa Rica warns that the structure can hold ten people but only three Americans.

A photograph purportedly showing a sign warning hikers about the maximum capacity of a suspension bridge in Costa Rica (it can hold ten people, but only three Americans) has been circulating online for several years:

While the exact origins of this picture (it appeared on several humor websites in 2013) are unknown to us, we have uncovered photographs that show it to be a manipulated image.

The original photograph was taken at the Monteverde Cloud Forest Reserve in Costa Rica, several pictures of which document that the actual signs displayed in conjunction with that location's Sky Walk attraction do not single out overweight Americans. For example, the photograph below was posted by blogger Camo Jack on the Uncommonly Sensible blog in 2008:

In 2012, the Costa Rica Star published several photographs from the Monteverde Cloud Forest Reserve, including one showing the sign in question:

The Sky Walk is one of the main tourist attractions to the Monteverde Cloud Forest. While it's true that the park's operators have strict capacity limits for their bridges, they address weight rather than nationality.

Dan Evon is a former writer for Snopes.