Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Land Agencies Should Use "Signs" to Address NOA at CCMA and other Sites


Since the BLM issued an emergency closure order in May 2008 that closed the Clear Creek Management Area to all users, the Recreation HQ and groups like BRC have urged the agency to adopt the use of “warning signs” used by sister agencies to address valid public safety issues v. the use of closures or expensive capping/ soil treatments.

CA State Parks uses signs to warn against undertow and dangerous ocean waves. Redwood National Park uses signs that count the number of people killed by downing on the beach and tallies those numbers on its warning signs.

At issue with the CCMA closure is that there is not one documented case in CA of a human contracting asbestosis/cancer and dying from recreational activity on public lands that contain naturally occurring asbestos. Yet, the BLM refused to even review or consider a signing prescription for CCMA because the line officer said he had made up his mind that the area should be closed to OHV and other motorized uses.

March 31 Blog on Faux Liability Issue at CCMA (a good read with background info)

HQ believes it is just this type of arbitrary federal action that the new Congress will investigate and have oversight hearings on.

HQ urges all federal land management agencies to strongly consider a “signing” prescription for routes/areas that contain NOA

A spokesman for a major environmental group told me recently that the whole NOA issue is “much to do about nothing.” HQ agrees and hopes that the agencies can put this to rest once and for all and get back to the job of providing quality motorized and non-motorized recreation at CCMA and in the other 42 CA counties where NOA occurs.

Thanks for your service!

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