Thursday, 17 August 2006 09:42

Theft of BSF Sign

This Wednesday, Aug. 16, I made a trip out to the salt flats for Speedweek and unfortunately discovered that some person(s) had decided to take home a souvenir and stole the BLM Bonneville Salt Flats Recreation Area road sign that was located between the gas station and the bend in the road. The sign was last seen by myself on Sat. Aug. 12  and some of the SCTA guys thought it was still there on Mon. Aug 14 (maybe). By Wed, many people had already left the Speedweek event.

The sign was recently replaced in May when I took down the old faded one. So this was a brand new sign and would cost over $800 to replace. The sign was removed from the upright posts and the bolts and washers were left lying on the ground. Since the old sign did not have secure nuts or welds and had been there for probably a decade, I did not think the new sign would need additional security. Boy, was I wrong. Even with security nuts or welds, the bolts still could have been cut or the posts cut down.

Attached is a photo of the stolen sign. I also took photos of the scene and gathered up the leftover evidence. Unfortunately, a piece of the BLM triangle logo from the sign was left on the ground, so the thieves probably tore it off to avoid identification and the sign will not be recovered intact (if ever).

The BLM considers this a very serious matter. Glenn Carpenter and the State Office have authorized a $250 reward for any information leading to recovery of the sign and/or prosecution of those responsible. I have notified the SCTA officials, and they were good enough to start making regular announcements and requests for info over the radio and CB at Speedweek since noon on Wed. Hopefully, we will get lucky. I would like to stress that the BLM does not in any way fault the SCTA or Speedweek officials for the theft of the sign, and we greatly appreciate their assistance in trying to recover it. With the sign located where it was, this was beyond their control.

Fortunately, I was able to locate a replacement sign in the warehouse and will put it up as soon as possible (with tamper-proof hardware!). At least the uprights are still there.

(Editor's Note) If you know or can provide any information regarding this situation, please contact Ray directly. 

Ray Kelsey
Outdoor Recreation Planner
BLM Salt Lake Field Office
Ph: 801-977-4333
Fax: 801-977-4397

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