DEATH VALLEY NATIONAL PARK
Firefighters Respond To Recreational Vehicle Blaze
On the evening of Saturday, November 17th, the campground hosts at Stovepipe Wells saw flames coming from the right rear tires of a 40-foot motor home parked near the gas station. They called 911 and also notified the driver, who was unaware of the flames. Stovepipe Wells rangers responded with Engine 3 within six minutes of the report and found the rear half of the RV fully involved. They protected exposures until additional firefighters arrived. Cow Creek rangers arrived in Engine 1 and a light rescue truck 30 minutes later. The Beatty Volunteer Fire Department also responded to assist. During the overhaul of the fire, two medical aid calls came into park dispatch as a result of the fire. One was a concession employee who fell while running to watch the fire; the second was one of the occupants of the motor home, who had a significant medical history and had lost all his medications in the fire. Both were treated by firefighter/EMTs; both declined transport to a medical facility. Investigation revealed that the driver wanted to get to the campground before dark and did not use the engine brake, only the foot brake, while descending nearly 5,000 feet from Townes Pass. Employees and VIPS from the visitor and resource protection and maintenance divisions managed the incident.