Fatality in Death Valley prompts warning

Aug. 9, 2009 at 3:10 PM
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LAS VEGAS, Aug. 9 (UPI) -- A spokesman for Death Valley National Park says the recent death there of an 11-year-old boy highlights the California-Nevada desert tourist site's dangers.

Park spokesman Terry Baldino said the death of young Carlos Sanchez, who became stranded in Death Valley last week with his mother, shows how dangerous the area can be without appropriate precautions, The Las Vegas Review-Journal reported Sunday.

Sanchez died Wednesday, four days after he and his mother Alicia became stranded in their vehicle in a remote section of the park.

Baldino said the Aug. 1 incident that eventually claimed Sanchez's life and hospitalized his mother could have been avoided through some simple precautionary steps.

The park official said Sanchez's mother should have chosen a less remote portion of the park to visit to improve chances of being located. With summer temperatures at the park occasionally exceeding 120 degrees, carrying sufficient amounts of water is highly recommended.

The Review-Journal said Sanchez and his mother became stranded after their vehicle became trapped in a collapsed animal burrow in the park's southwestern corner.

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