Since his “birth” on August 9, 1944, Smokey Bear has been communicating his well-known message, “Only You Can Prevent Forest Fires.” In 2001, the term ‘Wildfires’ was introduced to include all unwanted, unplanned fires in natural areas such as grass fires or brush fires.
Smokey Bear is a recognized symbol of conservation and protection of America’s forests. His message about wildfire prevention has helped to reduce the number of acres burned annually by wildfires, from about 22 million (1944) to an average of 6.5 million today. Although progress has been made, wildfire prevention remains one of the most critical environmental issues affecting our country. Many Americans believe that lightning starts most wildfires. In fact, on average, 9 out of 10 wildfires nationwide are caused by people. The principal causes are campfires left unattended, trash burning on windy days, arson, careless discarding of smoking materials or BBQ coals, and operating equipment without spark arrestors.
Smokey Bear is a Tech-Bear!
In addition to his own website, www.smokeybear.com, Smokey Bear uses Facebook, Twitter and YouTube to further the reach of his messages to young adults:
This summer, Smokey Bear’s Facebook community, which includes over 40,000 people, will feature new interactive tabs with quizzes, polls, fire safety tips and much more.
Smokey also has a free smart-phone app is designed to provide critical information about wildfire prevention, including a step-by-step guide to safely building and extinguishing campfires, as well as a map of current wildfires across America. The app provides easy access to all of Smokey's social media networks including his YouTube, Twitter and Facebook pages. By using this app, users in any location can learn the best ways to prevent wildfires and join the cause. The Smokey Bear app is available for iPhone, iPad and iTouch via iTunes and for Android devices via Amazon.
Did You Know??
Smokey Bear is the center of the longest-running public service advertising (PSA) campaign in U.S. history. Since 1944, he has been communicating his well-known message, “Only You Can Prevent Forest Fires.” In 2001, the term ‘Wildfires’ was introduced to include all unwanted, unplanned fires in natural areas such as grass fires or brush fires. The Smokey Bear campaign is a critical tool specially designed to ask for every citizen's conscientious commitment to be responsible with fire.
Smokey Bear has been rated one of the most recognizable figures in America, ranking alongside Mickey Mouse and Santa Claus. Smokey is recognized by 97% of adults and 3 out of 4 adults are able to recall Smokey’s message of “Only You Can Prevent Wildfires” without prompting, according to an Ad Council tracking survey. The Forest Fire prevention campaign was ranked 26th on Advertising Age’s Top 100 Advertising Campaigns (March 1999), along such commercial advertising giants as Campbell’s Soup and Burger King.
USDA Forest Service
The USDA Forest Service is the agency responsible for overseeing the use of Smokey Bear in cooperation with the National Association of State Foresters and the Advertising Council. The US Forest Service manages 193 million acres of national forests and grasslands for the American Public. Its mission is to sustain the health, diversity, and productivity of the Nation’s forests and grasslands to meet the needs of present and future generations.
Sources: www.stateforesters.org and www.SouthPugetSoundNews.com
Author:Brandi Rademacher Phone: 253-224-6663 Dated: August 10th 2011 Views: 1,885 About Brandi: Brandi Rademacher with RE/MAX Realty South is the Professional Realtor who other Realtors come to fo...
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