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Forest Service bulldozer vandalized and damaged near Preston

The following is a news release and photo from the U.S. Dept. of Agriculture.
PRESTON – Bear River Zone trail crew members were shocked Wednesday morning to arrive at their work site and find the zone’s 50-inch Sweco trail dozer had been forcibly stolen and driven into and left in Cub River.
Crews secured the dozer the previous evening after spending the day opening trails. Upon returning the next morning, they found that all padlocks had been cut from the machine, allowing the vandals to operate it. Tracks indicated that the machine had been driven around briefly before being driven off the road and into Cub River.
Trail dozers are expensive and vital tools in maintaining the forest trail system. Funding to purchase such equipment is not readily available, and this particular machine was transferred to the zone from the Idaho Department of Parks and Recreation. Initial reports sever damage to the machine, including intentionally broken hydraulic lines, an unserviceable battery and water contamination of operating fluids. Crews were able to retrieve the equipment from the river and are continuing to assess the extent of damages.
Given our short summer seasons, crews rely heavily on the dozer to assist in opening and repairing the zone trail system for recreational use. Senseless vandalism and disregard for public property such as this effects everyone who enjoys the Forest trail systems.
It’s highly likely the individual(s) responsible were injured in the incident. Multiple law enforcement agencies are involved in the investigation. Anyone with information regarding this incident is asked to contact the Soda Springs Ranger District at (208) 547-4356, Montpelier Ranger District at (208) 847-0375, or the Franklin County Sheriff’s Office at (208) 852-1234.
The post Forest Service bulldozer vandalized and damaged near Preston appeared first on East Idaho News.

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