Outer Banks Preservation Association (OBPA) launched a new initiative
this week to educate visitors on the rules of the off-road.
with the Cape Hatteras National Seashore, the OBPA has introduced
thousands of “Don’t Be a Clown, Air Down” stickers that will hopefully
remind folks to air down their tires before hitting the beach, and to
use 4WD vehicles only to cruise along the sand.
idea stemmed from one of the OBPA’s regular meetings with the National
Park Service (NPS) to find areas where the visitors’ experience of the
National Seashore could potentially be improved.
our discussions, we zeroed in on the fact that a lot of inexperienced
beach drivers get down here, and have difficulty driving in the sand.
They get stuck, get frustrated, and end up having a bad day on the
beach,” said OBPA Treasurer David Scarborough. “With a number of people
coming down without experience, we thought that maybe there’s a
lighthearted approach we can use to give suggestions to these new
bouncing around a few ideas, the OBPA board members came up with the
catchy slogan “Don’t Be a Clown, Air Down,” which is prominently
featured on the bright red oval decals, along with a reminder to air
down to 18 psi or lower.
people can get by without airing down, but more often than not, you’re
going to get stuck,” said Scarborough. “And there were a little less
than 40,000 beach driving permits sold last year, so there are a lot of
opportunities to either get stuck, or to learn the best practices.”
OBPA has initially produced 30,000 stickers, which have been
distributed to local tackle stores all around the island. In addition,
the stickers will be given out at Cape Hatteras National Seashore sites
to visitors who purchase a beach driving permit.
hope that visitors will see the stickers on the back of someone’s
truck, and will ask them about it,” said Scarborough. “There will be a
lot of opportunities to spread the word.”
isn’t the first time the OBPA has partnered with the National Park
Service (NPS) to provide services that help education the public on
best beach practices. In 2017, the two groups joined forces, (along
with representatives from the North Carolina Beach Buggy Association),
to announce the launch of the “Pack it In, Pack it Out” program, which
encourages visitors to leave nothing behind after their trip to the
beach. The successful campaign featured signs at every beach access, as
well as portable cards that were available at local shops and
this new effort that targets beach driving education, it is hoped that
the catchy reminders will encourage folks to take a few precautionary
steps before driving onto the sand.
were looking for ideas to improve the visitor experience this summer,”
said Scarborough, “and this seemed like a great way to help [educate]