Dec 192014
Alsea Bay and a rainbow. Awaiting the arrival of this weekend's blow and soaking...

Alsea Bay and a rainbow.
Awaiting the arrival of this weekend’s blow and soaking…
Anne Blanford photo

Share on Facebook
 Posted by at 5:11 PM
Dec 192014
Best to watch the surf from atop Foulweather or  Perpetua... Steve Power

Best to watch the surf from atop Foulweather or Perpetua…
Steve Power

Share on Facebook
 Posted by at 4:30 PM
Dec 192014

Reports of a vehicle off Highway 20 near the Eddyville Cemetery. Driver is wheel-chair-bound and he is still inside the vehicle. Appears to be uninjured. Rescue unit enroute.

Share on Facebook
 Posted by at 3:32 PM
Dec 192014
Ron Chandler, in a more relaxed moment...the next City Manager of Lincoln City

Ron Chandler, in a more relaxed moment…the next City Manager of Lincoln City
Google photo

According to Lincoln City’s agenda and packet materials, the city council has chosen former North Ogden, Utah City Manager Ron Chandler for the job.

Chandler resigned his North Ogden job after what was described in the town’s local news media and a very trying time for the city with high turn-over in city staff as well as the city council. City Councilors heaped a great deal of praise on Chandler, describing him as a hard working, highly knowledgeable chief city executive and that he had accomplished a great deal for the city during his tenure on the job.

Chandler is expected to be formally selected during next Monday’s City Council meeting, December 22, at 6pm.

Current City Manager David Hawker is expected to stay on as an advisor to Chandler to ensure a smooth transition.

Share on Facebook
 Posted by at 3:25 PM
Dec 192014


WARNING NWS SWSThe National Weather Service in Portland has issued a Flood Watch for Southwest Washington and Northwest Oregon. This watch is in effect from 4:00pm Saturday afternoon through 4:00pm Monday afternoon.

Confidence continues to increase that a classic atmospheric river type precipitation event will set up over the Pacific Northwest over the weekend and continue into early Monday. A deep and moist westerly flow is expected to develop Saturday morning and strengthen later Saturday and Sunday. A very long fetch of moisture, with origins west to the South China Sea, will feed into this system bringing the potential for very large rainfall totals across the region. With the flow forecasted to remain perpendicular to the Coast Range and Cascades for an extended period of time, expect strong orographic enhancement to lead to the highest rainfall totals over the mountains. The Coast Range, foothills and Cascades are expected to see in the range of 6-12 inches of rain with locally higher amounts possible. Lower but still significant totals are expected for the lower terrain. Projected rainfall along the coast is forecasted to be around 4-8 inches, with 2-5 inches expected over the interior lowlands.

Given the latest forecasted rainfall totals it appears that there is the strong potential for flooding over the weekend on numerous rivers and tributaries draining the Coast Range and Cascades. A few rivers may reach major flood stage. The current river stage forecasts indicate that the faster responding rivers could reach flood stage as early as Saturday evening. There also appears to be potential for flooding on some of the main-stem rivers early next week. In addition to flooding potential on the main-stem rivers and tributaries, there are likely to be impacts from urban and small stream flooding, and flooding along low lying pasture land.

In addition to the flooding concerns, excessive rainfall has the potential to create landslides, debris flows and excessive runoff in the vicinity of recent wildfire burn scars. Burn scars from two large fires this summer – the 36 Pit Fire in the Clackamas River basin near Estacada and the Deception Complex near Oakridge will be particularly vulnerable.

WARNING FLOODINGCurrent river forecasts are available here. In our area, major flooding is possible along the Mary’s River, which is fed by several streams in the Coast Range. Other Coast Range rivers, including the Siletz, Alsea, and Siuslaw may also see flooding.

Precautionary/preparedness actions…

A Flood Watch means there is a potential for flooding based on current forecasts. Landslides and debris flows are possible during this flood event. People, structures and roads located below steep slopes, in canyons and near the mouths of canyons may be at serious risk from rapidly moving landslides.

You should monitor later forecasts and be alert for possible flood warnings. Those living in areas prone to flooding should be prepared to take action should flooding develop.

Share on Facebook
 Posted by at 3:25 PM
Dec 192014
Tidewater flooding 2012

Tidewater flooding

The National Weather Service in Portland has issued a Flood Watch for southwest Washington and northwest Oregon. This watch is in effect from Saturday afternoon through Monday afternoon. The Red Cross urges residents to be prepared for activities that may affect them due to floods. Flood safety tips include:
– Check “go” kit and replenish any items missing or in short supply. Keep it nearby.
– Fill plastic bottles with clean water for drinking
– Fill car’s gas tank in case of evacuation notice
– Move furniture and valuables to higher floors of the home
– Unplug small appliances to reduce potential damage
– Consider precautionary evacuation of animals, especially large or numerous ones
– Avoid contact with floodwater as it may be contaminated
– Be prepared to evacuate quickly and know your departure route/destination

Safety tips and preparedness information is also available on the Red Cross Flood App. Applicable for iPhone and Android devices, the app is designed to help users learn about what to do before, during and after a flood. The app features a flashlight, alarm and “I’m safe” function. It also includes sections on what to do if the power goes out or if you are ordered to evacuate, what may/may not be covered by flood insurance and information for people with disabilities or special needs such as reliance on electricity for essential medical equipment. For more information about the Red Cross Flood App, visit

Share on Facebook
 Posted by at 2:46 PM
Dec 192014
Can you say..."STAY BEHIND THE RAILING!!? Julie Sacchetti photo

Julie Sacchetti photo

The National Weather Service (NWS) has issued a flood watch and high surf advisory for areas covering the Siuslaw National Forest. The Forest Service reminds all visitors to be safe if they venture out to the forest or coast this weekend.

The coastal hazard message released by NWS includes a high surf advisory for the central and north Oregon coast in effect now until 4pm Saturday. The advisory cautions that seas may reach 20 – 22 feet by this evening, with sneaker waves and beach erosion the biggest concerns. Beach visitors should use extreme caution to avoid being caught by unpredictable waves.

The flood watch is in effect from Saturday afternoon until Monday afternoon. The Oregon Coast Range mountains and foothills may receive up to 6 – 12 inches of rain during this time. This amount of rainfall means drivers may encounter water on roadways, reduced visibility, and the potential for landslides along steep slopes. Travelers should stay alert to potential hazards on forest roads.

Major flooding is possible along the Marys River, which is fed by several streams in the Coast Range. Other Coast Range rivers, including the Siletz, Alsea, and Siuslaw, may also see flooding, according to NWS forecasters.

“Visitors braving the rain to watch the storm on the coast or visit the forest should really keep an eye on conditions,” says Jerry Ingersoll, Forest Supervisor for the Siuslaw National Forest. “Unexpectedly big waves can surprise people on the beach, or they could get caught in mud on a forest road,” he continues. “I’m asking everyone to be safe out there this weekend while this storm passes through.”

Share on Facebook
 Posted by at 2:14 PM
Dec 192014
Bituminous Coal Wiki Commons photo

Bituminous Coal
Wiki Commons photo

Washington, D.C. – Sen. Ron Wyden, D-Ore., praised the Interior Department announcement that it will close loopholes that have allowed mining companies to dodge royalties when federal coal is exported overseas.

Wyden called for an investigation of questionable royalty practice in January 2013, after a series of Reuters articles detailed how some companies were using financial arrangements – often selling coal to their own subsidiaries at a low price – to avoid paying full royalties on coal that was mined on federal and tribal lands and then shipped abroad.

“I said from the beginning that taxpayers must receive every penny they are owed when coal companies sell resources extracted from public lands,” Wyden said. “I applaud Interior Secretary Sally Jewell beginning to take common-sense steps to make sure that happens.”

The Department of the Interior also announced it will update 25-year-old guidelines that may have allowed coal mining companies to pay below-market rates to lease Bureau of Land Management lands, another issue Wyden raised earlier this year. The new guidelines are expected to bring more consistency to the leasing process, and require BLM offices to take into account the potential that coal mined on federal land could be exported.

The Interior Department took a number of steps in response to Wyden’s inquiry, including audits of past royalty payments, which are ongoing.

Share on Facebook
 Posted by at 1:36 PM
Dec 192014
Avian Flu poppin' up...but is no threat to humans...

Avian Flu poppin’ up…but is no threat to humans…

SALEM — ODFW is on the lookout for avian influenza in wild birds in Oregon after the virus was detected in a small backyard poultry flock near Winston (Douglas County).

ODFW is asking the public to report dead wild birds, especially waterbirds (geese, ducks, shorebirds), to its Wildlife Health hotline at 866-968-2600.

Wild birds have evolved with avian influenza and usually don’t die or exhibit signs of sickness from the virus. There have been no recent wild bird die-offs related to avian influenza in Oregon.

The virus strain, known as H5N8, poses no immediate threat to human health. It has been circulating in Europe and East Asia and has not made people sick. However, the virus is contagious among birds and can be deadly to domestic birds and rarely, wild birds.

The H5N8 strain detected was found in a captive falcon earlier this week in Whatcom County, WA near the Canadian border. Another avian influenza strain, H5N2, was also detected in a wild bird (northern pintail duck) in Washington state.

This time of year, migratory waterbirds (ducks, geese, shorebirds) undergo a major north-south migration along the Pacific Flyway, which extends from Alaska to South America. Wild birds coming in contact with susceptible domestic birds (chickens, turkeys, Guinea fowl) could spread the virus.

The Oregon Department of Agriculture (ODA) strongly encourages backyard poultry producers to prevent contact between their birds and wild birds. Any sick domestic birds should be reported to the State Veterinarian’s office at 1-800-347-7028 or USDA at 1-866-536-7593.

Hunters: practice safe bird handling

The strain of avian influenza identified in Oregon and Washington states is no immediate threat to human health. But hunters should always practice safe bird handling and cooking techniques:

* Wear rubber or latex gloves when handling and cleaning game birds.
* Do not eat, drink, smoke or touch your face when handling birds.
* Keep the game bird and its juices away from other foods.
* Thoroughly clean knives and any other equipment or surfaces that touch birds. Use a solution of one third cup of chlorine bleach per one gallon of water.
* Wash your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds after handling birds (or with alcohol-based hand products if your hands are not visibly soiled).
* Cook all game meat thoroughly (up to at least 165° F) to kill disease organisms and parasites. Use a food thermometer to ensure the inside of the bird has reached at least 165° F.

Upland bird and waterfowl (duck, goose) hunting seasons are open in Oregon through the end of January. Goose hunting is also open in parts of the state during February and March.

For more information on avian influenza in wild birds, visit USGS National Wildlife Health Center:

For information on avian influenza in domestic birds, visit ODA’s website:

Share on Facebook
 Posted by at 1:31 PM
Dec 192014

Volunteer Joe Novello accompanies Sam Case student Shawn to the cash register to purchase Shawn's selections.

Volunteer Joe Novello accompanies Sam Case student Shawn to the cash register to purchase Shawn’s selections.

Rob Spooner, member of the Florence Kiwanis Club, presents a check to Sue Perretta, president of the Central Coast Kiwanis Club.

Rob Spooner, member of the Florence Kiwanis Club, presents a check to Sue Perretta, president of the Central Coast Kiwanis Club.

Wednesday after school, more than two dozen children from Sam Case Elementary, chosen by the Lincoln County School District’s HELP program and Sam Case Family Advocates, took part in the Kids In need Shopping Spree (KISS), organized by the Central Coast Kiwanis Club of Newport.

Accompanied by Kiwanis members and other community volunteers, each child was allowed to choose $100 (after generous store discounts) in shoes and clothing from the Newport Wal-Mart and Fred Meyer stores. Afterwards, the children, who ranged from kindergarten through third grade, enjoyed a party with holiday food, entertainment, and a visit from Santa at the HELP center at the former Yaquina View School. In addition to the shopping spree, 42 other children received Christmas stockings full of goodies and a $25 shoe voucher from PayLess Shoes, all donated by the club.

“The idea originated with our charter president, John Williams,” said Sue Perretta, the current club president. “Luci Diaz, our treasurer, was instrumental in bringing it all together. The idea was to let the children have fun while providing them with something to keep them warm this winter.”

The volunteers who assisted enjoyed the experience almost as much as the kids. Afterwards, Katie Bighill noted, “I had to hold my tears back. One little boy I was with said, ‘this is the best day ever!’ My little guy told me he felt like crying because he was so excited about his light up shoes and the party! I am so thankful to have been a part of this event.”

In addition to several community fundraising projects, some generous donations made the event possible, of which the largest was $1250 from the Florence Kiwanis Foundation. “The Kiwanis Club of Florence was one of the two sponsoring clubs for the Central Coast Kiwanis Club last year,” said Sean Barrett, president of the Kiwanis Foundation of Florence. “We were happy to help with their first big project. Our club is well established with 60 members contributing hundreds of volunteer service hours along with $30,000 annually to the community. This is the kind of impact a strong Kiwanis club can have and we hope to see the club in Newport accomplish as much within a few years.”

One of the new style of Kiwanis clubs, the Central Coast Kiwanis Club welcomes members from Yachats to Depoe Bay. They aim at having five social and service hours and just one hour meeting to do business each month. Anyone interested in learning more about Kiwanis can email [email protected]

Share on Facebook
 Posted by at 12:59 PM