WASHINGTON COUNTY — A UTV fire led to a death on Saturday after a man was unable to get out of his harness in time.
Steven Groves, 23, of Star, Idaho, died after suffering third-degree burns over most of his body, according to a news release from the Washington County Sheriff’s Office.
The Sheriff’s Office received a call about the UTV fire near Steck Park at 3:08 p.m. on Saturday.
According to the release, the driver of the UTV, James Bingham, 42, of Boise, was driving his UTV up a hill on sand dunes when he and Groves, a passenger on the UTV saw a man at the road waving his arms and yelling. That’s when Groves “yelled that the UTV was on fire.”
Both men were wearing five-point harness seat belts, states the release. Bingham was able to get his harness undone, but Groves was not able to get free.
“When the harness holding Groves in the seat burned off, Bingham was able to remove Groves from the UTV,” reads the release.
Both Bingham and Groves were transported to a hospital in Weiser Memorial Hospital and later both were taken to a Salt Lake City burn center, where Groves died from his injuries. Bingham is reportedly still at the burn center.
“We have no idea what caused the fire,” said Washington County Sheriff Matt Thomas.
The incident is still under investigation.
LifeFlight picks up 2 in separate UTV crash
Washington County Sheriff deputies also responded to a seperate UTV-related call later in the day. At 6:13 p.m., the Sheriff’s Office received a call about two juveniles being injured in a UTV crash near Brownlee Summit.
According to a news release from the Sheriff’s Office, both were taken to Cambridge in a private vehicle where they met with medical personnel. The release states both juveniles were transported via LifeFlight to Boise.
The sheriff issued the following cautionary advice for UTVs: Drive slow, Pay attention to surroundings and wear a helmet.
An investigation is ongoing.