Sunday, August 25th, marked the official start of this year’s Burning Man located in Black Rock City, Nevada.
The venue is a bit out there away from cities in Nevada. Much like EDC Las Vegas, there is only one road in and out of the festival.
The ‘Leave No Trace’ event is expected to see 70,000 burners this year.
Unfortunately, on the first day of Burning Man, a vehicle collision happened on said road.
Officials believe that 61-year-old Lonnie Richey, from Carson City, was driving his pickup truck that crossed over the center line and crashed head-on into an RV. Richey was pronounced dead at the scene while the two passengers in the RV were treated for minor injuries. According to Bob Harmon of the Washoe County Sheriff’s Office, fatigue may have caused Richey to lose control of his vehicle.
The crash happened in Gerlach, NV which is approximately 35 miles from the venue. Both vehicles caused debris to be scattered over the highway’s lanes. As a result, Burning man organizers used social media to suggest that attendees hold off on their journey while authorities cleaned up and performed an investigation.
Roughly 7 hours later, the Twitter account Burning Man Project provided an update that the highway was now open.
One must applaud Burning Man’s officials for provided clear and concise updates and making burner’s safety their priority. Our condolences go out to family and friends of Lonnie and all involved.