Man killed in ATV accident at the Oceano dunes

March 6, 2011

A 38-year-old man was killed after he was thrown from the all terrain vehicle he was riding at the Oceano Dunes State Vehicular Recreation Area on Saturday. [KCOY]

The unidentified man was riding on the dunes when he flipped his vehicle, rolled several times and was thrown from the ATV.

Emergency crews from Cal Fire, San luis Obispo County Sheriff’s department and State Parks responded to the victim.

He was pronounced dead at the scene.

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My condolences to his family and loved ones.

Looks like this will add more fuel to the existing contention regarding the closing of the off road activities out there.

Actually, tragic accidents are common enough in the dunes that I doubt this will add much “more fuel” to the dunes controversies. Locals are used to people dying in the dunes. It’s no secret. It’s expected at least once a year, along with many people being crippled. It’s the same old story. This won’t change a thing.

Some OHV enthusiasts even object to making it clear to those who ride in the dunes the number of people who have died or been crippled for life while riding there. They just want to tell people “ride responsibly” and then blame accidents on people not “riding responsibly.”

On hwy 178 into the Kern Canyon there is a huge sign with a ever increasing count of every drowning fatalities in the river. Maybe a similar sign in the staging area would help people think about the dangers associated with the ever changing dunes. The comment “The dunes aren’t dangerous” is true, but then neither is nitroglycerin until you add somebody that isn’t aware of the dangers present. I don’t know the current reg’s regarding Big ATV’s like the Rhino which the victim was unfortunately thrown from, there must seat belts in these and helmet requirements isn’t there? There’s enforced helmet laws to save us street bike riders from ourselves, there must be similar enforcement laws in the dunes as well?

Condolences to those who knew this man. Riding responsibly is the only way to ride.

Very sad. Please ride responsibly: “Ride to ride again”