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Bureau of Land Management Sued Over 2010 Off-Road Race in the Mojave Desert that Killed 8 and Injured a Number of Others

December 31, 1969

The federal government is a defendant in a number of lawsuits alleging California personal injury and wrongful death in the 2010 off-road race in the Mojave Desert at the California 200 event last year. Eight people died and at least 10 others sustained injuries when a modified Ford Ranger truck flew off the course when making a jump and crashed into a crowd of watchers lining the off-road track. More civil complaints are expected. BLM and the other defendants are accused of failing to keep proper control and management of the race.

The accident occurred in an area owned, maintained, and supervised by the Bureau of Land Management. In addition to the BLM, other defendants include Ford pickup truck driver Brett Sloppy, MDR Productions, and Mojave Desert Racing.

The plaintiffs contend that BLM did not follow the recreational permit process for letting the race take place on federal land. They also blame the government agency for failing to make sure that spectators would be safe. BLM policy specifies that areas for watchers need to be delineated with temporary fencing. When Sloppy's truck landed in the crowd of viewers, there was no guardrail to serve as a barricade that could have protected them.

Also, rules of conduct for spectators, warnings that they stay out of the pits, and accident risk information also needs to be posted on large signs when event weekends are taking place. The plaintiffs say that none of this was done on the weekend of the California 200. They believe that because these elements were missing, BLM should have taken away the event permit or canceled the race. (The government agency has admitted that it did not follow its own policies when admitting and monitoring this race). Hundreds of people attended the California 200 race that day.

Also suing BLM, Mojave Desert Racing, and MDR Productions is Sloppy's mom, Lynne Sloppy. She is claiming California personal injury for the distress she experienced when she saw her son's truck go off the racetrack, flip over, and land in the crowd. She contends that watching the entire accident unfold was traumatic, including seeing all the injuries happen and then watching people become aggravated toward her son while he was still stuck in his vehicle. She wants punitive damages for negligence and intentional infliction of emotional distress.

California Personal Injury
As you can see with all different allegations and claims being made over this incident, there may be numerous plaintiffs and a number of defendants in a California injury accident of this magnitude. Different grounds may be cited for negligence depending on the roles defendants allegedly played. Defendants may even become plaintiffs themselves--or, in this case, Sloppy's mom is also choosing to sue for her emotional injuries.

Wrongful-Death Suit in Off-Road Race Crash, Courthouse News, September 19, 2011

8 more lawsuits in fatal off-road race crash, SignonSanDiego, September 14, 2011

Related Web Resources:
Bureau of Land Management

Mojave Desert Racing


More Blog Posts:

California Off-Road Race Kills 8 and Injures 12 in Mojave Desert, California Injury Lawyers, August 17, 2011

Toddler Attending Los Angeles Lakers Game Dies After Falling 50 Feet from Staples Center Luxury Seats, California Injury Lawyers, November 22, 2011

Trucker Charged with Murder in 2009 La CaƱada Flintridge Truck Accident Files Los Angeles County Personal Injury Over Angeles Crest's Allegedly Unsafe Road Conditions, California Injury Lawyers, March 31, 2011

You want to make sure that you work with an experienced San Bernardino County personal injury law firm that knows how to explore the intricacies of these types of cases so that all grounds for negligence are made against all liable parties.