Instead of being scooped up by a UFO Friday night on the Extraterrestrial Highway, one unlucky cow was hit and killed by a car in a part of the desert that, during any normal weekend, is practically empty.
A car on state Route 375, also called the Extraterrestrial Highway, between Rachel and Hiko crashed into a cow Friday night, according to a tweet from the Nevada Highway Patrol.
No human injuries were reported. The cow, though, is dead, an NHP spokesman said Saturday.
The Highway Patrol warned drivers that wildlife is not used to the high volume of traffic that the remote highway is seeing during Storm Area 51 events — Alienstock in Rachel and the Area 51 Basecamp in Hiko.
Alienstock was sparsely populated on Thursday, but a surge of attendees came Friday looking to party or cash in on the Storm Area 51 meme. An estimated 3,000 to 5,000 festivalgoers are spread out over more than 40 acres, including RV parking, a campground and car park. Hundreds of other campers were parked on BLM land across state Route 375 for free.
Meanwhile, the Hiko festival was sparsely populated on Friday.
The Highway Patrol said drivers should adhere to speed limits and drive even slower at night, when the wildlife come out on the open range, desolate desert highway.
NHP spokesman Jason Buratczuk wrote in a text message Saturday to the Review-Journal: “We ask that people slow down and respect the ranchers’ livelihood. There are signs posted everywhere that it’s open range. If you injure or (kill) livestock you will get a ticket and can be held financially responsible for the deceased livestock.”
#TrafficAlert Crash on SR375 and mile marker 30. Passenger Car vs. Cow. SR375 is all open range, adhere to the posted speed limit, slower speeds are suggested during the overnight hours. Wildlife is not used to this high volume of traffic, please use caution. #keepnvbeautiful pic.twitter.com/LFzBT54TVK
— NHP Southern Command (@NHPSouthernComm) September 21, 2019