Over the weekend, the Burning Man festival turned into a muddy mess because of unprecedented rain. The mud was so sticky and hard to navigate because the festival takes place in a dry lake bed where the water can’t run off anywhere. People who tried to leave the festival in their cars or RVs got stuck, and some people walked several miles to the main road in order to get out. Local authorities issued a driving ban until Monday afternoon.
Sadly, many Burning Man attendees abandoned their vehicles and left behind hordes of trash in the mud, a Nevada sheriff said. The ditched cars and heaps of trash are scattered across a miles-long stretch in the Nevada desert. Sheriff Jerry Allen of Pershing County — where the week-long annual music and art festival is held — told the San Francisco Chronicle in an email that every year there are “large amounts of property and trash strewn from the Festival into Reno and points beyond“.
A veteran Burning Man festival-goer who stayed behind to help with the cleanup told NBC News that some of the 70,000 attendees did abandon their camps “so it’s not surprising to hear that there was trash left behind“. He noted that one of the 10 principles of the festival is to leave “no trace“, which some attendees clearly did not abide by.
Burning Man has not yet issued a statement on the situation.
Stay tuned for more news!