Man killed in Oceano Dunes crash

April 7, 2015

oceanoA Bay Area man, who was celebrating his 21st birthday, died in a crash at the Oceano Dunes on Saturday. [KSBY]

Erwin Baker was off-roading in an open riding area around 3 p.m. when he drove off a large dune, California state park rangers said. Rangers, lifeguards and Cal Fire personnel responded immediately, but could not revive him.

Oceano Dunes District Superintendent Brent Marshall said Baker went off a 15 to 20 foot dune at a speed that caused him to lose traction with the dune’s surface. On Sunday, another accident occurred at the same dune, state parks officials said.

The man involved in Sunday’s crash survived. Marshall said state parks officials would examine the area and attempt to prevent future injuries from occurring there.

Riders say that in certain light conditions dune surfaces appear flat even though they have steep drops.

Donald Richards, who works at Artie’s ATV Rental, said he heard Baker died during his 21st birthday weekend.

Official are still investigating the crash, but they do not suspect drugs or alcohol were factors. Investigators say Baker was wearing a helmet at the time of the crash.


And if I could, I would fix “pleas” and add the “e” to make it “please”. Sticky keys suck and the fact that it happened when I was criticizing someone’s spelling is pretty funny.


This is a tragedy! What if this were your son? Killed on his 21st birthday. Have some compassion please. It was a tragic accident involving a (probably) inexperienced driver. He wasn’t out drinking like so many on his 21st birthday. I am so sorry for the family and friends. The nastiness of these comments is appalling.


You can’t fix lack of common sense.

Downtown Bob

Sometimes, as they say shit happens. Would have been safer to have been playing video games, or enjoying a nature stroll in the non motorized section, but he could have been killed on the way there riding his bicycle. You have to live life, and life lived in adventure mode is risky…so embrace it. Sad to see any loss, but consider life without the opportunity for adventure.


Still safer than SLO County Jail!!

Rich in MB

3….2…..1….wait for it…

You know the Close the Dunes, How many more deaths must we have folks will be out in force because as the left once said, “never let a tragedy go to waste”.


It’s those “assault ATVs” with the black plastic fairings that are taking the lives of so many of our youths! They should not be allowed more than 10 liters of gasoline and require a special tool every time you want to fill them up again.


Rich, you are so right. Let’s change the slogan to “Oceano Dunes: They’re to Die For.” That should bring them the attention they deserve.


Yes, let’s all stop pointing out those pesky things that are killing people. There now, is that better?


Let Darwin have his way with those whose recklessness exceeds their abilities — as long as others are not hurt in the process.

There are too many risks to being an active, happy, living, adult human to try to protect everyone from everything. The risks of riding in the Dunes are not unknown as are the risks of many other recreational activities. It is up to the individual to take reasonable precautions and properly estimate their own capabilities. Freedom is more important than total security to many of us. If it doesn’t apply to you, fine. Just don’t force your values on others if they aren’t affecting you.