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Death Valley Closes After Floods Kill 2 at Furnace Creek Wash

August 17 2004 at 10:05 AM
roger  (Login dipper)

Response to August 2004 Accidents/Rescues


Death Valley National Park was closed Monday after flooding that officials said killed at least two people and cut off power and water.
An intense thunderstorm hit the Mojave Desert on Sunday evening, causing flash flooding and closing roads in the sprawling park.
"We're trying to account for all the visitors who were here," park Superintendent J.T. Reynolds told The Associated Press on Monday, using one of two telephone lines still operating from the park office.
The bodies remained Monday in a vehicle stuck in mud, rock and debris at Furnace Creek Wash, Reynolds and park spokeswoman Roxanne Dey said.
"We haven't been able to remove them yet," Dey said.
California Highway Patrol and National Park Service helicopters spotted at least eight other vehicles off highways and dirt roads, but officials said they could not immediately tell if they were occupied.
Reynolds said water and wastewater lines were severed, and the park would be closed at least two days and possibly through the weekend. The last time the park closed that long was in 1985, he said.

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