AW files suit to stop megaloads from traveling up Highway 12

9th of Aug 2013

On the evening of August 8th, Advocates for the West partnered with the Nez Perce Tribe and filed a suit against the US Forest Service for failing to uphold the requirements of a federal court order issued in February stating that the USFS has a legal responsibility to protect the Wild and Scenic River corridor.

This latest suit alleges that the USFS’s failure to stop a 255 foot long, 21 foot high, 644,000 pound megaload from entering the river corridor on Wednesday night is “arbitrary, capricious, (and) and abuse of discretion.”

AW is representing Idaho Rivers United in this case. IRU Executive Director Bill Sedivy had this to say regarding the case: “It’s incomprehensible that the Forest Service didn’t have the backbone to enforce its own rules. They are sending a terrible message to anyone who would abuse rivers and forests, as well as important cultural and historic sites on our public lands.”

Leading the charge on this case is AW’s founder, executive director, and lead litigator – Laird Lucas. Other key attorneys representing IRU in this case are AW Staff Attorney Bryan Hurlbutt and contract attorney Natalie Havlina.

When asked how he felt about filing this suit so close on the heels of AW’s February victory for Highway 12, Lucas remarked, “We thought Judge Winmill was quite clear when he ruled in February that the Forest Service has authority to protect the Wild and Scenic River corridor from megaloads, but the agency is refusing to follow that ruling. We are proud to stand with the Nez Perce Tribe in returning to court to prevent more illegal Omega Morgan megaload shipments.”