Woman dies in dunes

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Woman dies in dunes

Post by Crowdog » Sun Jun 29, 2003 10:27 pm

http://www.ivpressonline.com/articles/2 ... news06.txt

Woman dies in dunes


By LAURA MITCHELL, Staff Writer

Sunday, June 29, 2003 7:54 AM PDT

IMPERIAL SAND DUNES — An Ohio woman died from exposure here Saturday after she and her daughter got separated from their group, according to Imperial County Sheriff's Office officials.

El Centro recorded a high temperature of 110 degrees Saturday. The off-road season at the dunes slows down after spring break, when temperatures in Imperial County reach into the 90s.

Around 12:30 p.m. an 11-year-old boy reported his mother and his 10-year-old sister did not return to their campsite after a trip to the Glamis Store, county Sheriff's Sgt. Mark McNay said.

The Sheriff's aerosquadron flew over the dunes and located two people in a bowl deep in the dunes. The squadron gave the location to the Sheriff's Off-Highway Vehicle Enforcement Safety Team. The team dispatched to the dunes with an emergency medical sandrail, McNay said.

McNay and his partner, county sheriff's Deputy Randy McCoy, found the woman dead at the scene at 3:56 p.m. The little girl with her was starting to fall asleep, McNay said.

"We took her to Pioneers Memorial Hospital for a checkup and possible heat stroke," he said.

The woman and girl did not appear to have water and were not dressed for hot weather, McNay said.

"They were wearing shorts and short sleeve shirts," he said.

McNay said it's a problem going out there at this time of year because one can easily get lost in the middle of the day when conditions are termed as "white-out," or no shadows.

People who get lost don't have much time to live.

"This heat can take you fast," he said. "I think we saved the little girl. In another 30 minutes she would have been dead."

The U.S. Bureau of Land Management did not have a ranger available at the station off Gecko Road near Glamis, McNay said.

>> Staff Writer Laura Mitchell can be reached at lmitchell@ivpressonline.com

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Post by quad1100 » Mon Jun 30, 2003 8:34 am

It's hard to even comment on something like this, it's very sad and I feel terrible for the family. But you have to ask yourself, what is the attraction of going to Glamis during these hot months? I'm sure many of you will chime in with a reason, but is it really worth the risk especially if you do not know what you are doing or are not a frequent visitor to Glamis and do not know your way around.

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Post by Poiks » Mon Jun 30, 2003 9:33 am

What really infuriates me is that nothing has been done (as far as I know) to ensure cellular coverage, by all major carriers, throughout the entire ISDRA.

I'm going to be in Brawley in a couple of weeks, and would love to take a quick dune ride while I'm there. I would bring my GPS, and my cell phone. But how much is that going to help? What good would it do me if I got stranded, but couldn't get cellular service? I'm not even sure I'd know who to call anyway, other than 911. I have some of the emergency numbers, etc., in my Palm device, so I guess I'd try them.

That's another good question: Say I'm in the middle of the dunes, and I get stranded (i.e. my buggy is not driveable). So, I call for help, and I give the BLM my GPS coordinates. Are they going to do anything to help me get my buggy out of there? My guess is--no. My assumption is that they'd come get me, but the buggy would sit there until some private party came to get it. Hopefully, that would be me and not someone else who stumbled across it.

These are my rambling thoughts about duning in the off-season. It's tempting, but it sure seems risky--even if you bring plenty of water, a phone, and other survival gear.

Deepest sympathy to that family, who have suffered an unthinkable loss. :(

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Post by jhitesma » Mon Jun 30, 2003 12:11 pm

I'm a big fan of summer riding but you have to be smart about it. You have to carry lots of water. You have to let others know when you're leaving and when to expect you back. You have to keep your activities to a minimum until the sun goes down. And it's best if you stick near places it's easy to get help.

I would never go out into the big dunes of Glamis in the summer, even on a night ride. But I'll gladly explore lots of Buttercup. Why? Glamis is a major ghost town this time of year - Buttercup is only deserted by the recreationalists. The BP is still out in force and the area is still well traveled and well watched. You're also a lot closer to help if anything should go wrong.

Summer in the dunes is spectacular but tricky. The razorbacks are sharper than normal, the dunes are softer than normal and things are a lot harder to read compared to the rest of the year. But in return you get some of the most spectacular views imaginable. Even the popular areas are smooth and fresh with few if any tracks. As a photographer summer in the dunes is one of my all time favorite spectacular views.

But all that being said even I have limits. This past weekend I wouldn't even head out to the dunes. When it's still over 100 after the sun goes down and topping over 110 when the sun is up I'll stick to the A/C. And for people new to the desert or inexperienced in desert survival the dunes in summer are a death trap to be avoided at all costs. I've had some close calls in the desert when I first started visiting from Ohio - more than once I understimated the amount of water I should bring and how disorienating the desert can get when it's that hot. Thankfully I never went out alone and my hiking partners and I always managed to keep enough of our wits about us to ration our water and think rationally about how to deal with the situation.

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Post by Sue Davies Laird » Mon Jun 30, 2003 12:51 pm

How could they NOT have had water? Talk about sad..
I feel awful.. I hope the child is ok... and give all my thoughts and prayers
to the family.... :cry: :cry:
Sue~

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Post by Spyder » Wed Jul 02, 2003 8:32 am

Very sad, indeed...

I was curious as to what was ment by the following quote: "The woman and girl did not appear to have water and were not dressed for hot weather, McNay said.

"They were wearing shorts and short sleeve shirts," he said.

I did a little search on http://www.google.com and found the following, it could help...

Hot Weather Clothing
Naturally, you’re not going to worry as much about maintaining body heat in warmer weather. In fact, you might be most comfortable if you dress to shed as much excess heat as possible: shorts and a T-shirt. In extremes of heat, however, you may find you’ll feel better wearing lightweight trousers and a long-sleeved shirt, providing shade from the heat of the sun.

Hot weather clothing, in general, should be thin and loose fitting to allow cooling air to circulate around your body. Remember what desert dwellers usually wear: billowing robes. Light-colored clothing reflects the sun’s heat while dark clothing absorbs sunlight and increases the chance of discomfort. Loose-fitting clothing also prevents biting insects from reaching your skin, and light-colored clothing seems to attract fewer insects than dark clothing. Trousers can be tucked into socks to prevent easy access for ticks, and ticks show up better on light-colored clothing, allowing you to discover and remove them sooner.

A wide-brimmed hat is strongly recommended to protect your head, face and neck from heat and sunburn. A wide-brimmed hat allows you to drape mosquito netting over your head and keep if off your face, ears and neck. If you can’t part with your baseball cap, wear a bandanna under the cap, allowing it to hang down over your ears and neck in the tradition of the French Foreign Legion.

Your pack should contain rain gear (see Wet Weather Clothing) and a stocking cap, since, even in desert environments known for intense heat, wind and temperature drops are not uncommon. And, rain can make you miserably cold even if the temperature stays the same.
Robert McMillin
Member of D.U.N.E.R.(Duners Undoing Needless Environmental Restrictions)

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Post by like2bcrazy » Wed Jul 02, 2003 12:20 pm

Simple safety tip. Use the Buddy system, don't go out alone.

Stay safe

Mark
If it ain't broke, don't fix it.

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Post by KFXBob » Thu Jul 10, 2003 12:54 pm

There might be a reason ?? But I find it hard to believe that it took 3 1/2 house to get someone out there to rescue them. I would NOT be out there in the middle of the day even with proper clothes/water. I have been there in the Summer, but only ride in the Evening/Morning and even then you better be prepared in case of a breakdown or crash/injury. Sorry to hear about the Fatality, I still wonder how it took so long to get help, How long did it take to get a Chopper out there, Could it have landed and helped out ? and then how long to get a buggy or 4 X 4 there ? I know the Border patrol is in the South dunes area frequently, were they available??

KFXBob

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Post by jhitesma » Thu Jul 10, 2003 3:42 pm

Border Patrol was probably out - but if you're a US citizen they probably can't be bothered to help you. We've had a couple of situations down at Buttercup where help was needed and BP would roll up and just watch - when we'd ask them for help they'd say "Sorry, unless we arrest you we can't help you".

My friends vehicle broke down one night and we spend several hours searching for him when he didn't come back to camp. The next morning he decided to hike back to camp but got lost and ended up at the canal. He was parched having run out of water some time ago. At the canal he ran into some BP who had one of those big 5 gallon beverage coolers full of water - but said they couldn't give him any!

Don't even expect the BP to raise a finger to help you - 9 times out of 10 they'll say "tough luck" and just watch you suffer :(

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Post by OBSESSED » Thu Jul 10, 2003 5:13 pm

after she and her daughter got separated from their group,
This story makes me so sad....

Did it have to happen-NO!

What was her group's problem?

Obviously she didn't know dune stuff, why was she let/left alone?

This is so preventable.

Never dune alone.

We will always cut our dune rides short if you have a problem.

We'll get you back to camp, their group wasn't there for her.

So sad.........

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Post by Bob Tenwick » Fri Jul 11, 2003 3:54 pm

I heard Cingular owns the new tower by the Glamis store and it's operational. Can anyone confirm this?

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Post by Giff » Mon Jun 21, 2004 10:18 pm

Poiks wrote:What really infuriates me is that nothing has been done (as far as I know) to ensure cellular coverage, by all major carriers, throughout the ISDRA :(
Why does it infuriate you that cellphone companies shy away from losing money? Theres no profit in installing sell towers out in sticks ESAPECIALLY if theres no grid power power availible.

Heres what you can do if you really need cell coverage out in the sticks:

OPTION 1

Become a HAM radio operator and install a 50+ watt 2 meter FM transmitter (less than 200.00) in your RIG, you do not have to have morse code anymore for the basic license. I am not certain for the SOuthern California area but I'll bet theres 2 meter amateur repeater coverage over most of Glamis and Dumont.
HAM radio operators LOVE to help on emergency comms.


OPtion 2

I got an old Motorola Cellphone (the 3 watt car mounted one) build a high gain "Yagi" antenna and find some way mount it as high as possible when in use. With a 15' mast (3 5' sections of TV mast) I was able to hit Reno Cell towers from the Black Rock Desert- (Burning MAn)over 100 miles away

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Post by Poiks » Mon Jun 21, 2004 10:34 pm

Giff wrote:Why does it infuriate you that cellphone companies shy away from losing money? Theres no profit in installing sell towers out in sticks ESAPECIALLY if theres no grid power power availible.
I guess you're right. What was I thinking?

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silly me

Post by Giff » Mon Jun 21, 2004 10:49 pm

What was I THINKING????

I forgot; Its perfectly logical here in the centrally-planned People's Republic of Kalifornia to require evil nasty capitalists to ignore the market and do what's best for the sheeple... The bougoise<sic>(can't remember how to spell it!, gotta go check my Communist Manifesto) should PAY for YOUR convienence, right?

right..
sigh...

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Re: silly me

Post by Poiks » Mon Jun 21, 2004 11:14 pm

Giff wrote:What was I THINKING????

I forgot; Its perfectly logical here in the centrally-planned People's Republic of Kalifornia to require evil nasty capitalists to ignore the market and do what's best for the sheeple... The bougoise<sic>(can't remember how to spell it!, gotta go check my Communist Manifesto) should PAY for YOUR convienence, right?

right..
sigh...

Don't you think that's a slight overreaction to my desire for cell phone service in the ISDRA? I obviously don't have the power to "require" anything? Calm down, dude. It's kind of like thinking there should be a gas station within driving distance. Nothing to get worked up over. I promise not to use all of my all-encompassing power to make you fund a cell tower for my convenience. :roll:

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Post by Voice » Tue Jun 22, 2004 5:29 pm

Actually, the very best thing that you can do to encourage your provider to cover an area is to complain about coverage to them.

Brian
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Post by Poiks » Tue Jun 22, 2004 7:08 pm

Voice wrote:Actually, the very best thing that you can do to encourage your provider to cover an area is to complain about coverage to them.
That's what I did (with Verizon). Little did I realize that my actions unmasked me as a Kalifornia Kommunist.

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Re: silly me

Post by your basic sandrail » Tue Jun 22, 2004 8:08 pm

Giff wrote:What was I THINKING????

I forgot; Its perfectly logical here in the centrally-planned People's Republic of Kalifornia to require evil nasty capitalists to ignore the market and do what's best for the sheeple... The bougoise<sic>(can't remember how to spell it!, gotta go check my Communist Manifesto) should PAY for YOUR convienence, right?

right..
sigh...


Simmer down... its not that big of a deal.

Hey are you KF6URY (Remove the (6) and its KFURY) who was "broadcasting and deliberately interfering" with a 145.210 repeater?
http://www.arrl.org/arrlletter/99/0528/

In another case related to the WA6SEK repeater, the FCC this week modified the license of Technician licensee William B. Gifford, KF6URY, of Stockton to prohibit VHF/UHF operation for 90 days. The FCC alleged that Gifford was "broadcasting and deliberately interfering" with operations on the WA6SEK 145.21 MHz repeater for several hours. Gifford also has 30 days to protest the modification.



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Post by Unlethal » Wed Jun 23, 2004 2:25 pm

Actually I think if a cellphone company added a satalite or whatever to recieve signal in and around the Glamis area would be a great marketing idea.

I know ALOT of people that would get that service just for that.

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Post by Voice » Wed Jun 23, 2004 4:07 pm

A cell phone company did... It's an AT&T/Cingular cell and it works great!

Brian
Mahmoud Ahmedinejad in a letter to President Elect Barak Obama
"May God Almighty ... bless the leaders of societies with the courage to learn from the mistakes of predecessors,"
"I hope that you will be able to take fullest advantage of the opportunity to serve and leave behind a positive legacy."

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Post by Poiks » Wed Jun 23, 2004 4:21 pm

Voice wrote:A cell phone company did... It's an AT&T/Cingular cell and it works great!
I agree; right now if you want phone service at Glamis, go with an AT&T or Cingular GSM phone. At Gordon's, though, Verizon seems to be the ticket.

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Re: silly me

Post by NOSJunkie » Tue Jun 29, 2004 9:19 am

Giff you are quick to denounce someones idea of increasing cell coverage, but its a good thing I didnt need my radio while you were intentionally blocking a repeater for several hours?
your basic sandrail wrote:
Giff wrote:What was I THINKING????

I forgot; Its perfectly logical here in the centrally-planned People's Republic of Kalifornia to require evil nasty capitalists to ignore the market and do what's best for the sheeple... The bougoise<sic>(can't remember how to spell it!, gotta go check my Communist Manifesto) should PAY for YOUR convienence, right?

right..
sigh...


Simmer down... its not that big of a deal.

Hey are you KF6URY (Remove the (6) and its KFURY) who was "broadcasting and deliberately interfering" with a 145.210 repeater?
http://www.arrl.org/arrlletter/99/0528/

In another case related to the WA6SEK repeater, the FCC this week modified the license of Technician licensee William B. Gifford, KF6URY, of Stockton to prohibit VHF/UHF operation for 90 days. The FCC alleged that Gifford was "broadcasting and deliberately interfering" with operations on the WA6SEK 145.21 MHz repeater for several hours. Gifford also has 30 days to protest the modification.



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