Wayne National Forest seeking information on vandalism

AMA News Author (no byline)

PEDRO, Ohio — The Wayne National Forest is seeking information from anyone who might know who is responsible for an act of vandalism at the Hanging Rock Off-highway Vehicle trailhead area in Lawrence County, Ohio.

The image depicts one of the vandalized signs that alerts drivers to the presence of an ATV trail crossing. Photo courtesy of Wayne National Forest

The Ironton Ranger District reports that 12 road signs along Forest Service Road 105 have been broken off at the base of the signs. Most of the signs were either to alert drivers to an all-terrain vehicle trail crossing or stop signs for both road and ATV trail crossings.

The incident is believed to have occurred on the night of Saturday, Aug. 5.

“These signs are critical to the safety of motorists and riders alike. Their absence could have resulted in the serious injury of visitors trying to enjoy the trails or the ponds in the area. It also resulted in a need for a significant amount of time and funding to fix the situation,” said Destiny Chapman, acting district ranger for the Ironton Ranger District.

District staff worked quickly to retrieve the signs that were salvageable. They refurbished and replaced the signs.

Anyone with information concerning this incident or any other similar incident is encouraged to contact the Ironton Ranger Station at 740-534-6500 or by email at r9_wayne_website@fs.fed.us.

For more information, visit our website at www.fs.usda.gov/wayne. Follow the Wayne National Forest on Twitter: @waynenationalfs and Facebook.

The U.S. Forest Service is an agency of the U.S. Department of Agriculture, a mission of sustaining the health, diversity and productivity of the nation’s forests and grasslands to meet the needs of present and future generations. The Forest Service’s Eastern Region includes twenty states in the Midwest and East, stretching from Maine, to Maryland, to Missouri, to Minnesota.

There are 17 national forests and one national tall grass prairie in the Eastern Region. For more information, visit www.fs.usda.gov/R9.

The U.S. Forest Service manages 193 million acres of public land, provides assistance to state and private landowners, and maintains the largest forestry research organization in the world. Public lands the Forest Service manages contribute more than $13 billion to the economy each year through visitor spending alone. Those same lands provide 20 percent of the nation’s clean water supply, a value estimated at $7.2 billion per year.

The agency has either a direct or indirect role in stewardship of about 80 percent of the 850 million forested acres within the United States., of which 100 million acres are urban forests where most Americans live. For more information, visit www.fs.usda.gov.