Off Road Damage Causes Fear of Flooding

Off Road Damage Causes Fear of Flooding

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(Bountiful-AP) -- Increased damage to east Davis County hills from off-highway vehicles is so bad that Forest Service officials fear there will be devastating flooding when normal rainfall returns.

Concrete barriers, warning signs and bulldozed rocks, trenches and dirt berms have been employed to stop the damage but with limited success.

Some riders treat the barriers as an obstacle course and other go around them, creating new trails.

Salt Lake District ranger Loren Kroenke said problems have risen to a level where they can't be ignored any longer.

Kroenke said, "I have a growing fear about this use causing flooding in places that we have never experienced it before."

Dirt bike and O-H-V ownership in Utah has increased from less than 52-thousand in 1998 to nearly 128 thousand last year, with many more unlicensed vehicles.

(Copyright 2003 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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