California senators Feinstein and Boxer demand answers on crash in Mojave Desert

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Francis Specker/AP Photo

Workers push an overturned off-road race truck upright Sunday after it went out of control and plowed into a crowd of spectators during a race earlier in Lucerne Valley, Calif., Saturday, Aug. 14, 2010. At least eight people were killed during the incident about 100 miles east of Los Angeles.

California’s two senators are asking the federal Bureau of Land Management for answers in last Saturday’s deadly crash at an off-road event in the Mojave Desert.

Democratic senators Dianne Feinstein and Barbara Boxer wrote to the Bureau of Land Management to find out which safety measures it requires when it grants permits for off-road races on federal land. They want to know whether fees for those permits are high enough to pay for federal oversight, and what penalties the agency allows for those who don’t follow the rules.

Eight people died and a dozen were injured last weekend when a truck careened into a crowd of young people watching the California 200. The senators say the truck reportedly traveled faster than allowed and the event attracted more spectators than the permit had listed.

In their letter, the senators say proper precautions could have prevented the accident.

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