LOCAL NEWS

Utah teen dies after becoming trapped underneath sand in Kanab

May 16, 2022, 5:45 PM | Updated: May 17, 2022, 4:05 pm
(Utah Division of State Parks)...
(Utah Division of State Parks)
(Utah Division of State Parks)

KANAB, Utah — A 13-year-old boy has died after authorities say he became trapped underneath the sand at Coral Pink Sand Dunes State Park on Saturday.

Park rangers were notified about the incident around 5:30 p.m., according to Utah State Parks.

“Park rangers believe he had been digging a tunnel in the side of a sand dune when it unexpectedly collapsed with him inside,” stated a release from the agency Monday afternoon.

A family member who witnessed the collapse told nearby visitors and state park staff what had occurred. They, along with a state park law enforcement ranger and deputies with the Kane County Sheriff’s Office, immediately began digging.

Ian Spendlove, of Santa Clara, Utah, was recovered around 5:53 p.m. Park officials say he was approximately 6.5-feet beneath the sand.

First responders immediately began CPR. After a pulse had been detected, Spendlove was flown in a medical helicopter to St. George Regional Hospital and then to Primary Children’s Hospital in Salt Lake City.

“Unfortunately, on Sunday, Spendlove had not regained brain activity and was declared dead,” stated the release.

The incident remains under investigation, according to Utah State Parks.

“With the recreation season now underway, Utah State Parks would like to remind everyone that while Utah’s outdoors are beautiful places to explore, safety needs to be a top priority. Always recreate with a buddy, wear your life jackets and helmets, and always let somebody know where you are going and when to expect your return,” concluded the release.

Click here for more safety tips.

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Utah teen dies after becoming trapped underneath sand in Kanab