The Bonneville Salt Flats is a densely packed salt pan in Tooele County in northwestern Utah. The area is a remnant of the Pleistocene Lake Bonneville and is the largest of many salt flats located west of the Great Salt Lake. The property is public land managed by the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) and is known for land speed records at the “Bonneville Speedway.” Access to the flats is open to the public.
Unfortunately, “Save The Salt” (www.savethesalt.org) once again had to bring illegal activity to the attention of the BLM officials.
Recently, a photo surfaced of two Utah residents who took public (socials) credit for driving recklessly on the Bonneville Salt Flats in a highly modified Ford Crown Victoria.
They had made multiple hard-circling maneuvers, breaking through the thin salt crust and plowing ruts into its surface. The photo was posted on BFGoodrich Tires’ national website and Facebook pages igniting hundreds of negative responses from the U.S. and international land speed racing community.
ModernJeepers enjoy action pics as much as anyone, and media folks are always looking for that dramatic image that displays the fun of motorized recreation. But BFG’s social-media agency was caught off-guard, thinking it was just an action photo.
Thank goodness, as soon as the tiremaker caught wind of the overwhelming social media outrage, including from the international land speed racing community, an apology was immediately issued, saying “Thank you all for voicing your concerns. The vehicle in the photo wasn’t owned, driven, or sponsored by BFGoodrich,” and they acknowledged the poor judgment in this case. The post was then removed, apologies issued, donations made, and partnerships re-affirmed.
SaveTheSalt.Org Thanks BFGoodrich Tires
“We applaud BFGoodrich’s quick response in removing the posting once it became aware of the irresponsible act,” said Dennis Sullivan, President of the Utah Salt Flats Racing Association. “BFGoodrich has long ties to Bonneville and its tires have helped racers set land speed records over many decades. The company values this unique venue and has joined the racing community in efforts to restore the salt flats.
To assist in the effort, the company is making a $5,000 donation to the Save the Salt Foundation.”
According to our friends at Save The Salt…
“The photo which documents damage to the salt crust was posted on a Facebook page. This is not the first time the two Utah residents have been to Bonneville. At least two other photos show the same vehicle. One in November 2016 shows the vehicle along with a similar car in standing water when driving on the salt flats is prohibited and the crust is especially vulnerable to damage.
The racing community urges the BLM to pursue violations of rules and regulations governing the Bonneville Salt Flats,” said Save the Salt Foundation Vice Chairman Tom Burkland. “Enforcement will help send a message where signs and other warnings have proven to be insufficient mechanisms. The public must respect this environmental jewel.”
Save the Salt Foundation
Save the Salt Foundation is a nonprofit organization whose mission is to protect the Bonneville Salt Flats in Utah and to promote its history and motorsports legacy. The organization aspires to keep this national treasure available for future generations.
In 2011, a number of prominent organizations formed the “Save the Salt Coalition” to help the nonprofit organization achieve its goal. The Coalition is seeking to restore the Bonneville Salt Flats. The Coalition is working with government officials, mine operators and others to supplement the current salt replenishment activities.
In 2014, the Utah Alliance, a Utah-based advocacy group was formed to use its expertise and contacts at the local level to protect this historic place listed on the National Register.
BFGoodrich Tires Outstanding Trails Program
It’s only fair to point out that BFGoodrich Tire company has been saving trails and putting money behind their mouth for decades.
The BFGoodrich® Tires Outstanding Trails program was established in 2006 to raise awareness for responsible use and preservation of off-road trails while providing support in the trails’ conservation efforts.
The Outstanding Trails program has recognized 52 off-road trails and clubs across North America. The program has provided more than $200,000 in grants in support of the various trail conservation efforts. Trails are nominated for uniqueness, terrain type and enthusiast following.
Several nationally recognized groups and organizations support BFG and this amazing program to help keep motorized recreation alive and well.
BFG Outstanding Trails https://www.bfgoodrichtires.com/outstanding-trails-program.page
ModernJeeper Encourages Peer Pressure and Responsible Recreation
All of us in the ModernJeeper and Metalcloak team encourage all motorized enthusiasts to take responsibility for our public lands and treasures like Bonneville. Exert peer pressure on those around you to make sure they follow the rules. Contact law enforcement agencies when motorized idiots try to ruin it for us all. Be part of the solution and engaged in helping save trails.