Fifth person killed this year at Oceano Dunes

July 12, 2019

On the same day the California Coastal Commission met to discuss limiting Oceano Dunes access to off-road vehicles, a man died in a motorcycle crash at the dunes. [Cal Coast Times]

Officials have identified the man who died Thursday as Glendale, Arizona resident Mario Olivas, who was in his upper 40s. The fatal crash marked the fifth death at the Oceano Dunes since April.

At about 6:45 p.m., Olivas was riding his motorcycle at a high rate of speed when he was ejected from the bike in an approximately 40 to 50 foot sand dune bowl. State parks rangers arrived at the scene and found Olivas unconscious and without a pulse.

Responders performed CPR for about 20 minutes. Medics arrived at the scene and pronounced Olivas dead at 7:25 p.m.

Olivas was wearing a helmet, but it was not properly secured, according to state parks. Investigators say neither alcohol nor drugs appear to have been factors in the crash.

The Arizona man was visiting the Oceano Dunes with friends and family. The San Luis Obispo County Sheriff’s Office is conducting an investigation into Olivas’s death.


His poor choice should not equate to punishment for others, the dunes are not responsible.

That said, I’m sorry for his family and friends.


How true, but I cannot think of to many things fun wise that lasted long after 5 were killed in a matter of months. Well….that is unless lots of money is involved. Hypothetically, If there was a person or entity to sue for the deaths do you think there would be lawsuits?


On the same day the Ca Coastal Commission met to discuss limiting Oceano Dunes access to ORVs … a guy going just a little too fast on a motorcycle sadly ends up dead for the same reason that while there are old pilots and bold pilots, there are no old bold pilots.

Had it happened just as easily on a fun-to-drive backroad or a highway, it would barely even make the news.

His death had ZIP to do with the Dunes, and everything to do with his own free choice of taking a risk too far. The CCC it appears appeals to those who would love to subject every resident and visitor to this area who would prefer to enjoy their lives civilly and peacefully on their own terms, to having to meet the CCC’s approval first. Another word for it is tyranny, steamrolling individual rights to live peacefully and civilly without reference to the taste or whims of others, even to take risks more timid folks wouldn’t.

Sincere condolences to Mario Olivas’ family and prayers up for their comfort and strength.