Category Archives: United News

Contact your representative about the ‘Black Box Privacy Protection Act’

United Four Wheel Drive Associations (UFWDA) motorcycle equivalent organization the American Motorcycle Association (AMA), are supporting a Bill to protect your privacy from vehicle event data recorders. That Bill, the Black Box Privacy Protection Act is to be introduced by US Reps. Mike Capuano (D-Mass.) and Jim Sensenbrenner (R-Wis.).

The bill will protect owners’ rights by requiring dealers to prominently disclose to consumers if an event data recorder, known as a black box, is installed in their vehicle, the data collection capabilities of such a device, and how such data may be used. The bill clarifies that the owner of the vehicle owns the data and it may not be accessed without the permission of the owner. Furthermore, this bill requires that manufacturers provide consumers with the option of controlling the recording function in future automobiles or motorcycles that are equipped with black boxes. In other words, the ability to turn the black box on or off.

Currently, no federal law exists that clarifies the rights of vehicle owners to ownership of the recorded data.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has issued a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking requiring black boxes in all cars manufactured after Sept. 1, 2014. The NHTSA already has disclosure requirements, but the Black Box Privacy Protection Act would make the disclosure more prominent and give consumers even greater choice and privacy protections.

UFWDA support the moves by the AMA and the work of Reps. Capuano and Sensenbrenner and ask the 4×4 recreation community to urge your representative to become an original cosponsor to the Black Box Privacy Protection Act.

Attached is a pre-written letter, simply download and include your details, date and sign it, then send directly by mail or email to your representative, whose address details you can find at http://www.usa.gov/Contact/Elected.shtml

Download letter

Book NOW for UFWDA Colorado meeting

Are you going to join UFWDA at our annual conference being held this year over June 26/27 at Manitou Springs in Colorado?

If you are, we suggest that you book accommodation immediately, as a few days later on June 30 is the annual Pikes Peak International Hill Climb in the same area. Accommodation will be in demand.

For information about the meeting and accommodation options, download the UNITED CONVENTION document. An update on ‘places of interest’ for those not in meetings is available.

April 2013 eNews

  • Nevada has new group protecting access to public lands
  • 2013 Outstanding Trails Awards
  • CA OHV Commission posts now filled
  • UFWDA 2013 AGM June 26 – 30
  • Win this 2012 Jeep Wrangler JK8
  • Bantam Jeep June 14-16
  • Sally Jewell Gets to Work as Secretary of the Interior
  • NMOHVA Lawsuit update
  • quatre-quatre or 4X4
  • UFWDA welcome recent organisation members
  • Tread Lightly! Unveils Bold, New Website
  • Reminder of UFWDA annual awards
  • Grand Rapids Minnesota Area ATV / OHV Resources
  • Download eNews

2013 BFG Outstanding Trails winners announced

United Four Wheel Drive Associations (UFWDA) attended the 2013 Easter Jeep Safari with BFGoodrich Tires and TreadLightly! to announce the winners of the BFG Outstanding Trails program, that’s dedicated to responsible use and conservation of off-roading. For 8+ years, the Outstanding Trails program has recognized over 30 off-road trails throughout the country and has awarded over $115,000 in support of trail conservation efforts.

The winners of the 2013 Outstanding Trails program, nominated for uniqueness, terrain type and enthusiast following, are:

Dutch John Trail at the Uwharrie National Forest in Troy, NC

Kansas Rocks Recreation Park in Mapleton, KS

Truckhaven in Salton Sea, CA

March 2013 eNews

  • Trails on Maryland public lands?
  • Preaching to the Choir…
  • UFWDA 2013 AGM June 26 – 30
  • Your chance to win this 2012 Jeep Wrangler JK8
  • Wheeling for Hope 2013
  • Have you a photo for UFWDA Voice?
  • Recreation Groups offer Guidance on Eldorado Meadow Route
  • WOHVA’s 9th Annual Wisconsin OHV Enthusiast Workshops
  • Cape Hatteras National Seashore review
  • AMA warn of H. R.1187 to take 23 million acres of the Rockies
  • UFWDA annual awards
  • East Coast Offroad Racing Series
  • Download eNews

November 2012 eNews

  • US Forest Service (USFS) and UFWDA sign a MOU
  • Land use and UFWDA
  • The war is heating up
  • Wilderness and Roadless Area Release Act of 2011
  • UFWDA Voice
  • Moab and Easter Safari
  • Shortcuts to Landuse and Volunteerism
  • UFWDA on Facebook
  • The  Devil’s  Staircase
  • Where do you want to ride today?
  • Download eNews

US Forest Service (USFS) and UFWDA sign a MOU

A positive step forward has been achieved in on-going efforts to build relationships with public land managers by UFWDA and was negotiated by Carla Boucher, the UFWDA legal advocate, who stated:

“The recently signed Memorandum Of Understanding (MOU) between the US Forest Service (USFS) and UFWDA indicates strongly the desire of both the Forest Service and UFWDA to express our common support for four wheel drive motor vehicle use recreationally on lands managed by the US Forest Service.

The intention between UFWDA and USFS is to foster and maintain the best cooperative partnership we can.  It is important to the progress that UFWDA clubs and associations make on the care and use of roads and trails managed by the USFS, as it outlines both the commitment of four wheel drive motor vehicle enthusiasts to care for the land and a commitment on the part of the agency to continue to view 4×4 recreational use as a legitimate form of recreation.

The MOU is an outward sign of the relationship both parties currently enjoy at both a national level and a local level and signals the strength of the relationship between UFWDA and the USFS for 4×4 motor vehicle access.”

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The US Department of Agriculture, Forest Service provides multiple opportunities for visitors to enjoy outdoor recreation on National Forest Service lands.

UFWDA is a USA based, international 4×4 organization established in 1978 and working to maintain motorized access to public and private lands, while advocating sustainability.

To get a copy of the MOU please follow this link

LEGAL EFFORTS TO SAVE TELLICO FALL SHORT

ASHEVILLE, NC (September 21, 2012) — The United States effectively walked away from its substantial investment in a sizable portion of the Nantahala National Forest as a result of a recent ruling in the U.S. Western District of North Carolina rejecting four-wheel drive enthusiast efforts to re-open some portion of the Upper Tellico OHV System. The ruling, issued on September 19, came in a lawsuit filed by Southern Four Wheel Drive Association, United Four Wheel Drive Associations, and BlueRibbon Coalition. The suit contended the U.S. Forest Service overlooked required procedures and otherwise acted illegally in closing the 39 miles of trail in the System to motorized access.

The Court ruled against the enthusiast organizations, the Court ultimately concluded “[t]he decision of the Forest Service was not arbitrary, capricious, or an abuse of discretion, and it was in accordance with the law. Having conducted ‘a searching and careful, but ultimately narrow and highly deferential inquiry,’ the Court concludes that the Forest Service followed the proper procedures and that there is a rational basis for its decision.” The System represented the remnants of a network of former logging roads and skid trails purchased by the United States in 1980 and officially opened as a “high challenge” area in 1986.

“We are obviously disappointed by this result, but knew that we faced long odds in this case” said Roger Theurer, Past President of Southern Four Wheel Drive Association. “We realize the agency has broad discretion, but are incredibly frustrated that they exercised that discretion to walk away from rather than find an effective management solution for the System. It should concern more than just four-wheelerswhen the federal agency would rather run for cover in the courts than craft a solution on the ground,” Theurer observed.

The System was located in a remote and difficult to access portion of the Forest which historically received little attention other than from the four-wheel drive community, who came to attach iconic significance to the Tellico System. As part of the closure decision, a Forest Service contractor has obliterated the former trails and left a maze of boulders and fallen trees in their place, making the former routes inaccessibleto all but the most determined hiker.

“We released an update to our enthusiasts during this case called ‘Tellico – Alamo’ which today seems sadly prescient” stated Greg Mumm, BlueRibbon Executive Director. “Within and beyond our land managing agencies exist strong opponents to meaningful human access and recreation, and we would be wise to learn from Tellico and heed their next project,” Mumm concluded.

The Court document can be downloaded from http://www.ufwda.org/smf/index.php?topic=3691.0

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United Four Wheel Drive Associations is an international organization comprised of four wheel drive enthusiasts, clubs, associations, and businesses dedicated to providing community services around the world, education in responsible land use and safe vehicle operation, and protection of our natural resources through conservation practices.1-800-448-3932. www.ufwda.org

The BlueRibbon Coalition is a national recreation group that champions responsible use of public and private lands, and encourages individual environmental stewardship. It represents over 10,000 individual members and 1,200 organization and business members, for a combined total of over 600,000 recreationists nationwide. 1-800-258-3742. www.sharetrails.org

Southern Four Wheel Drive Association (SFWDA) was founded in 1987 to promote responsible land use and to keep public lands accessible for motorized recreation. For more information on the activities and accomplishments of Southern Four Wheel Drive Association, please visit www.sfwda.org .