Death Valley is a desert valley in the northern reaches of the Mojave Valley, a scorching spot that poses a serious danger to those within it who don’t have proper supplies due to the dearth of water and the horrifically high temperatures.
Unfortunately, it was named properly, as it claimed another life last week when the car of a senior citizen, 67-year-old David W. Kelleher, ran out of gas as he was driving through the valley, with a visitor to the park finding his body.
Apparently, according to the National Park Service, which notes that he had entered the park a few days before his death, Mr. Kelleher had to abandon his car after it ran dry on fuel and was trying to make it from Zabriskie Point to Furnace Creek.
Fox News, reporting on what happened and why the National Park Service struggled to find Mr. Kelleher after he ran out of gas and left a scribbled message saying so with his abandoned car, notes that:
A ranger noticed a car in Zabriskie Point parking log on June 8 and noticed the same car there three days later.
A heat wave caused record temperatures, up to 123 degrees.
After discovering that the vehicle was registered to Kelleher and learned that there was no missing person report on him. A records search also showed that a park ranger had cited Kelleher for off-road driving on May 30.
The ground and aerial search was limited by hot weather. The search focused on the Golden Canyon and Badlands Trails.
Mr. Kelleher was later found just two and a half miles from his abandoned vehicle, his body mere yards from the California Highway but obscured by the vegetation in the area.
To avoid such dangers, the Park Service encourages the Death Valley park’s visitors to not go hiking, particularly in the lower elevation areas, after 10 am, and to always bring plenty of water and salty snacks with them when they do go hiking so as to remain hydrated and compensate for electrolyte loss.
Unfortunately, Mr. Kelleher’s death is the second one this month, and the third probably death recently. John McCarry a 69-year-old from Long Beach, was found dead at the beginning of the month and though his body has not yet been found, a search is ongoing for Peter Harootunian, who had to abandon his car like Mr. Kelleher.The search for Mr. Harootunian has, however, been scaled back.
Fox News reports that, in light of the recent tragedies, “Park rangers say in extreme heat, people should wait at a broken vehicle, rather than attempting to walk for assistance. Kelleher’s vehicle was parked at one of the park’s most popular viewpoints.”
This story syndicated with permission from Will, Author at Trending Politics
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