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Ventura County Sheriff's Office
Monday August 3rd, 2020 :: 02:30 p.m. PDT


News Story – Lockwood Valley, Off-Highway Vehicle Rescue

Nature of Incident: Off-Highway Vehicle Rescue
Incident Number:
Los Padres National Forest – Sunset Campground
Unit(s) Responsible:
Lockwood Valley Sheriff’s Station & Fillmore Search and Rescue Team
(S)uspects, (V)ictims, (P)arty, (D)ecedent

City of Residence

(P) Adult Male
(P) Adult Male
Lakewood, CA
Lakewood, CA
Narrative:   On Thursday, 7/30/2020, at about 11:24 PM, the Ventura County Sheriff’s Office received a call for service reference stranded motorists on the off-highway vehicle trails near Sunset Campground.  Sunset Campground is a remote campground in northern Ventura County accessible by experienced dirt bike riders and 4x4 vehicles equipped with significant clearance and appropriate tires.  The stranded motorists’ reported that they had driven the Lockwood Creek Trail to the Miller Jeep Trail before their vehicle was rendered inoperable by several flat tires. 
Due to the remote area, the motorists’ did not have cellular telephone service and had to hike to find cellular service to call for assistance.  The Fillmore Search and Rescue (SAR) Team, which is comprised of highly trained volunteers, was activated and responded to Lockwood Valley.  They responded to the Sunset Campground along with a deputy from the Lockwood Valley Sheriff’s Station with numerous all-terrain vehicles to assist in the search.
The Lockwood Valley Sheriff’s Station is outfitted with a Polaris RZR four-seat utility-task vehicle (UTV) that is available for these type of rescues.  The deputy utilized the Sheriff’s RZR to drive to Sunset Campground through very rough terrain.  At about 03:30 AM, the SAR team members and the Lockwood Valley deputy located the stranded motorists who were all in good health and were driven out of the area. This successful rescue operation was due to the efforts of the SAR team members and Lockwood Sheriff Deputy who utilized the specialized equipment, their training, and knowledge of the area to locate the motorists. 
The Sheriff’s Office would like to remind everyone that when they are recreating in the national forest and wildlands, it is imperative that it is done so safely and responsibly.  Many of the hazards and risks associated with Off-Highway Vehicle recreation in these remote areas can be mitigated by proper planning and preparation.  At a minimum, it is imperative to be familiar with the area you are recreating in, have a map, know the limitations of your vehicle and driving ability, have sufficient food and water, and ensure someone who is not with the group knows the details of your trip and when to report you as overdue.
Please recreate responsibly for your safety and the safety of our first responders.      
Prepared by: Deputy Sam Moss  
News Release Date: 07/31/2020  
Media Follow-Up Contact: Deputy Sam Moss (661) 245-3829  
Approved by: Captain J. Rivera  

Ventura County Sheriff's Office
800 S Victoria Ave
Ventura, CA 93003

Emergency: 9-1-1
Non-emergencies: 805-654-9511

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