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July 31, 2008

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Discussion Topic: What Was Smokey Bear Smoking?

That, or something like that, is what off-road-vehicle advocacy groups asked the Forest Service about it’s latest public service announcement, which has now been pulled.

From the Associated Press:

The Forest Service said Tuesday it has canceled a public service ad in which the iconic bear warned that sparks from off-road vehicles could start a wildfire.

Off-road groups had complained that the ad sent the wrong message that riders operating ATVs in a legal manner can start forest fires. . . .

The BlueRibbon Coalition, an Idaho-based group that advocates for off-road vehicles, hailed the ad's withdrawal.

"I honestly believe the agencies had intended to create a positive message regarding safe use of ATVs on public lands," said Don Amador, the group's Western representative.

Whatever its intent, the ad "incorrectly conveyed to the ATV rider that the best way for them to prevent wildfires was to stay at home. Instead, the ad should have encouraged the use of Forest Service-approved spark arresters and limiting travel to approved routes and areas," Amador said.



I saw the ad last week. The needle on my BS meter hit the peg. I admit to thinking that an ulterior motive was at work - namely: ATV bad! ATV not welcome in forest! ATV go home!

Don Amador

After talking with a number of FS recreation and trail staff, It is clear that they were not consulted with BEFORE that ad campaign was launched. I have heard the FS will not be doing any more "motorized" ads this year.


Flame me if you will! I agree with the message : ATV GO HOME!

Yes there are positive uses for them but the ones I see racing through the woods up here are doing no good and lots of bad!



SA, I agree. ATV go home, or in the very least stay on your own land and noise pollute, ruin hunts and tear up the place all you want.

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