ALERT: 73,000 People Trapped

( – HAPPENING NOW: More than 73,000 people are currently trapped at the annual Burning Man event in Nevada.

Specifically, on Saturday, the 73,000 attendees of Burning Man were advised to remain in their camps due to a rainstorm that transformed the desert environment into a muddy mess.

Following the rainstorm, event officials halted vehicle movement on Friday afternoon and had not reopened the exit gates by 8 a.m. today. Moving about became hazardous, with the dense, slippery mud sticking to shoes and anything it made contact with.

In light of the conditions, event organizers urged attendees on Friday and Saturday to ration their food and water. Attendees received updates about the situation through the Burning Man radio station, BMIR, and a dedicated social media channel.

Given the lack of cell phone reception at the festival, only a select few can access satellite internet for information. Attendees are encouraged to be entirely self-reliant during their visit, ensuring they have ample food, water, and shelter supplies.

As dawn broke, many realized that their departure plans might be disrupted, especially with more rain predicted for Saturday and Sunday. The usual Saturday morning buzz, typically centered around the Man effigy burn, was noticeably muted.

Despite the muddy conditions, a handful of attendees ventured out, attempting to navigate back to their camps following a night of revelry.

For instance, after using portable restrooms, Angelov Franco from Colombia carefully adjusted the trash bags on his feet and trudged through the mud toward his camp. This year marks his 13th time at the festival, and he expressed that he had never encountered such muddy conditions before. Yet, he remained optimistic, stating, “This is going to be fun. Hopefully, the sun will come out after the rain.”

The onset of inclement weather coincided with the event’s peak attendance and resulted in the cancellation of several large-scale art burns on Friday.

The event’s organizers cautioned in a 5 a.m. announcement, “No driving is permitted on playa except for emergency vehicles.” They further advised, “If you are in (Black Rock City), please shelter in place and stay safe.” In another statement, they highlighted the need for attendees in BRC to “conserve food and water, shelter in a warm space.”

The event is set to conclude on Monday with the mass exit known as Exodus.