BREAKING: Woman Dies at Burning Man [Updates]

This just in, we will update the story if we get more details.

[Update 9/1/14 7:14pm]

The most recent version of events:

The art car was towing a trailer with heavy equipment including a generator. Burning Man founder Marian Goodell was on board, the accident happened just in front of First Camp. The 29 year old woman, Alicia Cipicchio from Wyoming, tried to jump on the bus while it was moving to climb a ladder to its roof, between the bus and trailer. She died at the scene. The driver has not been accused of any wrongdoing in what sounds like a tragic – and preventable – accident.

Preventable? Don’t try to jump on a moving art car, Burners.

Our condolences to Alicia’s family and friends – may she rest in peace. It seems that the Burner community came together, with the neighbors looking out for her distraught camp-mates.

Burner Gary said:

Dear Fellow Burners,
I’m attaching a very personal note we received from Alicia’s friends and campmates. This amazing act of kindness started the healing process for everyone. Our two camps met, shared the sadness, prayed and hope everyone understands this was a tragic accident, not reckless driving.

As you may know, Alicia tried to jump on the trailer ladder while the bus was moving and fell in between the bus and the trailer (apologies for being direct).

Our deepest sympathy goes out to everyone and please never jump on a moving art car, tragic accidents happen in a split second.

Please send your positive thoughts and pray this never happens again.

alicia note

 

 


 

From the SF Chronicle:

embrace and man and sun08-28) 08:49 PDT BLACK ROCK DESERT, NEV. — A woman died at Burning Man in northern Nevada early Thursday after she was run over by a bus carrying participants, authorities said.

Details of the crash were not immediately released, but Burning Man co-founder Marian Goodell described it as “a terrible accident.”

The victim’s name has not been released pending notification of her family.

“Our thoughts and prayers are with her family, friends and campmates,” Goodell said. “Black Rock rangers and emergency services department staff are providing support to those affected.”

The 500 rangers managed by organizer Black Rock City LLC are patrolling the art and entertainment event in addition to 95 federal and local law enforcement officers. Burning Man officials said they were working with the Pershing County sheriff’s office in its investigation of the death.

In 2003, Katherine Lampman of Belmont died at the event when she fell from an “art car” and was run over by its wheels. Lampman, 21, was a student at the Academy of Art College in San Francisco and an aspiring photographer.

Some 68,000 people are arriving in the Black Rock Desert about 120 miles north of Reno for the annual weeklong event. The gates opened Tuesday after a rainstorm hit the region, closing the festival Monday on its opening day.

The Shagadelica Bus

The Shagadelica Bus

The Art Car involved was Shagadelica, a double decker bus covered in fur. The incident appears to have happened just after midnight Thursday morning, in front of Center Camp and the keyhole. Burning Man updated their Facebook group with the news around 5am.

Fox47 News has a video story here. They are reporting that the woman fell under the bus and was run over.

From Reuters:

The woman, whose name and age was not immediately released, may have been riding on the bus before she fell under the wheels and was run over by it, said Sheila Reitz, dispatch supervisor for the Pershing County Sheriff’s Office.

Looking at the photo of bus, it’s easy to see how someone might fall off the top, but harder to see how they would then get run over. Perhaps she fell from the doorway?

[Update] 8/28/14 12:06pm

The 29-year old woman from Wyoming has been identified, From KRNV news Reno:

PERSHING COUNTY, Nev. (MyNews4.com & KRNV) — Pershing County officials have identified the victim of Thursday morning’s deadly bus incident at Burning Man.
 
According to a press release from Pershing County authorities, Alicia Louise Cipicchio — a 29-year-old resident of Jackson, Wyoming — suffered fatal injuries early Thursday morning after falling under a large vehicle at the annual Burning Man event in the Black Rock Desert in northern Nevada.

Event officials, including representatives of Black Rock City, the Bureau of Land Management, and Pershing County Sheriff’s Office express their condolences and sympathies to the family, friends and campmates of the victim. Support is being provided to those affected by the tragedy.

Organizers are working with investigators from Pershing County Sheriff’s Office to determine the series of events leading to the incident. Anyone with information that may assist in the investigations is asked to contact (775) 273-2641.

 [Update 8/28/14 4:42pm] 5 Time Burner has shared a better photo of the Shagadelica. It pulls a trailer, which sheds some light on how a tragedy like this could occur:

shagadelic art car sand-ship

This is not the first time someone has been run over at the festival. There have been at least 2 other deaths there since 2011 – a fact that is news to me. The number of police sounds lower than previous years. From the Reno Gazette-Journal:

Humboldt General Hospital CEO Jim Parrish said earlier this week that deaths do happen at Burning Man. He said at least two other people have died there since the hospital began providing medical response in 2011.

This is the first reported Burning Man death this year.

The woman…sustained fatal injuries after she was struck and died at the scene. (Daily Mail)

No foul play is suspected, the Pershing County Sheriff’s Office said. (Raw Story)

Burners commenting online have shared details on some other incidents:

Tristan: another year i saw someone also get rolled over by a (smaller) art-car (only minor injuries). they learned it is a really bad idea to sleep under an art-car parked on the playa.  

…a few years ago a random guy was mugged by a guy dressed-up as a clown, it was pretty serious (broken arm).

Marco: the last time i was there we were in line and person got ran over by the family that was in their trailer

Leja: We had someone in our camp years ago who happened to die from his congenital heart defect just after setting his tent up. His family was contacted immediately. We were amazed by the rangers and other staff in how organized, thorough, solid and kind their response was.

Cameron: Remember the woman we found sleeping on the playa in the middle of the night last year and took back to her camp – no lights, no neon. Scary. Temple Burn.

Partick: At least we know what happened now…. All night we heard things like stab or massive gunshot……

El Chingdon: lets not forget the people who died in a burning airstream in 2003 because they left candles burning

Mr Fang: No one died in a burning airstream in 2003, but someone did die that year from injuries sustained when a small plane crashed

Laurie: We found a girl last year passed out face down in the middle of everything and had to call the rangers. She was in the dark and this could have happened then, it’s very hard to see out there in the in between spots

The Sheriff JD: may the clouds of your own heaven hold you gently and rest your soul in peace

from the UStream feed

screen cap from the UStream feed – definitely looks like Shagadelica

2014 shagadelica fatality

Photo of the victim from Facebook. Our condolences to her family and friends, and all the Burners who witnessed this tragedy. May she rest in peace.

alicia cipicchio

[Update 8/31/14 3:33pm]

Burner Frank is just back from the Playa, and took this photo of Shagadelica and Embrace. It looks like the trailer is full of speakers, which would be very heavy.

motorbike embrace

[Update 8/31/14 4:59pm] Someone who works at DMV has shared some further details about the accident:

It had nothing do to with driving while drunk. The girl jumped on the car while it was moving on the back and lost footing and the port geni ran over her that they tow. I work for DMV and all of the drivers are very responseable about keeping with brc rules/laws. In my time with DMV I have never come across a drunk operator.

 

18 comments on “BREAKING: Woman Dies at Burning Man [Updates]

  1. Pingback: Woman killed at Burning Man festival | Flybii - Social Travellers News

  2. It’s sad when anyone dies, especially someone who had a huge life in front of her. It is even sadder to me that she was a citizen of a very sacred ephemeral city which I choose to call Home. My Burn was much quiter after hearing of this tragedy. My camp mate is First Responder for Rangers and she was devastated by the scene, I pray for everyone this accident touched, from her grieving parents to the bus driver to the First Responders to the people riding there bikes past the scene, seeing something they will never erase from their internal screen. Alicia Cipicchio will have incredible representation at the Temple next year, I will make sure of that. I am very sad for her boyfriend as well, who was with her at her personal time of permanent exodus. Peace.

    Liked by 1 person

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  4. I know this bus. Don’t know who owns it now but the original guys were garbage. Big money partier types – one was an Enron trader I think. I met them in Vail as they planned it. It made its debut onto the Playa in tow as it blew its engine driving from SF. Had to be towed around that year by a Unimog. Then a year later it re-appeared in working order and hit the playa with a door man and an attitude from hell….rumors abounded – drugs, hookers and private parties. I even heard they were told to leave the event. Another rumor was that its fake fur got infested with bugs over the year….can’t substantiate the rumors but where there’s smoke….and I saw smoke when I met these guys. (the computer in the Vail condo had a page up for “Vail escorts”! – WE LEFT IN A HURRY!). It needs to go away for good now. Bad karma…..Sad story and a tragedy for this woman and her family.

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  9. Pingback: Burning Man Art Car Runs Over Woman

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  11. Many fewer people die or are injured at BM than in an other city of the same size in the same time period…….or so I have heard

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  12. Pingback: Woman Killed By Art Car at Burning Man | Woman Killed By Art Car at Burning Man | Social Dashboard

  13. If it was the Shagadelica it’s clear to see how this could happen. Our camp had a small bus with a platform over the cab, and one night a guy just passed out and rag-dolled in in front of the vehicle. Luckily we were barely moving at the time and the driver hit the breaks.

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