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Toledo: House fire at 755 NE Sturdevant Road – Quarter mile south of Toledo High School

755 NE Sturdevant, Toledo, Thursday evening

Friday morning update: Fire officials determined the cause of the fire was accidental; it was started on a downstairs chair.

Toledo Firefighters were called to a home on NE Sturdevant on a report that the basement area was full of heat and smoke. They pulled up to find that whatever was burning was doing it in a fairly air tight area, so although the heat was intense and caused damage, the flames never left the basement area.

Two teenagers, who were home alone at the time, evacuated themselves along with the family dog. Unfortunately the family parakeet upstairs succumbed to smoke inhalation. Damage in the downstairs basement area was considerable. There was light smoke damage upstairs throughout the remainder of the home. Power was ordered cut to the home so the teens and their parents are not able to live there until repairs to the home can be made. The Red Cross was called in and have found the family temporary quarters for at least the next few days.

First Weekend Art in Toledo features “The Black and White Show”

Robert Trusty photo
Click photo to enlarge

From one of the artists of the Black and White Show…Robert Trusty

Please join us at LastLight Photography for our special “Black and White” show. Featured photographer Robert Trusty has produced over 100 black and white prints examining natural and found objects and tableaus from the Oregon coast and from his family’s farm just outside of Nashville, TN. (That’s right, Tennessee, not near Eddyville.)

Refreshments will be served. You will find LastLight Photography in the Cottage Gallery at 157 NE Alder Street in Toledo, open 11am-5pm Saturday, January 5 and Sunday, January 6.

For more information, call 541-270-5849.

Toledo City Council swears in two new and one returning councilor – also gives green light to pursue funding for new pedestrian/bike path – and a problem at Mill Creek Dam reported

Toledo City Council
Councilor Alma Baxter
Councilor Jackie Kauffman
Councilor Jill Lyon
Adam Denlinger, Public Works Director
Slump Outs at Mill Creek Dam
Click photos to enlarge

Three city councilors were sworn into office Wednesday evening at the beginning of the first Toledo City Council meeting of the new year. New City Councilors Alma Baxter and Jackie Kauffman were given their oath of office as was returning City Councilor Jill Lyon.

Councilors immediately got busy on the agenda that included council approval for Public Works Director Adam Denlinger to apply for a state grant to provide a pedestrian and bicycle path that connects East Slope Road to Butler Bridge Road and Fir Streets. If the grant is approved, the pathway will connect the east side of Toledo to the main downtown area and to the city waterfront. Denlinger said the pathway will go a long way to fixing a number of connectivity issues the city has had for many years.

Denlinger also briefed the council on a major flooding event at the city’s Mill Creek Reservoir. Denlinger was quick to emphasize that the flood event at the city’s secondary source of drinking water and the dam that keeps it there did not weaken the dam or cause any chance that the dam might fail. But he did say that the repairs now going on at the dam are aimed to ensuring the problem doesn’t threaten the dam’s strength and safety down the road.

Denlinger said four inches of rain falling in a single 24 hour period nearly two weeks ago caused two slides along the access road to the base of the Mill Creek Dam. The water-logged ground just above the road caused a slump out which covered the ditch that normally channels storm downhill and into Mill Creek. Instead, a small mudslide diverted the stormwater from its ditch, directing it onto the road surface. The water then ran down the road and cascaded over an edge that caused another, more serious slump, that threatened the base of the dam’s fish later facility.

Denlinger says crews have been working feverishly to restore the contour uphill from the fish ladder and to strengthen roadside areas. He said the work will help prevent a similar thing from happening again during any prolonged downpour.

Denlinger stressed that the incident has not weakened the dam, but if left unrepaired for an extended period of time, it might. He estimated the cost of the repairs at around $45,000, some of which he hopes will be picked up by the city’s insurance carrier. Denlinger added that a high level structural engineer will be visiting the dam this week to confirm the preliminary assessment that’s already been made on the situation. The Mill Creek Dam was built in the 1960s.

Toledo: Trail/bike lane upgrades along East Slope Road


Toledo City Hall

It appears that Oregon State Parks and Recreation thinks a lot of Toledo’s idea to better connect East Slope Parks trails to Fir Street and Butler Bridge Road. State Parks and Rec has sent a letter to the city inviting them to apply for a $150,000 grant to build a walkway and bike paths along that portion of East Slope Road.

Toledo Public Works Director Adam Denlinger told his city council that the project meets a lot of state requirements including that there is access to scenic waterways and estuaries along with meeting safety requirements to better protect walkers and bikers where there is no off street protection today.

Denlinger said he will bring the parks and recreation grant application at the council’s first meeting in January.
If the city is approved for the grant, the city will still have to come up with around $30,000 of its own money, money that Denlinger says can be fairly easily through volunteer labor, donated equipment time and materials.

Applications for the grant are due January 17th and if awarded to Toledo the project must be done by September of 2014. Councilor Jack Dunaway chimed in that the East Slope Road corridor is the biggest hole in the Toledo walking and bicycling system.

Denlinger said he will be bringing the request to council at its first meeting in January.

Toledo: Van goes down a hill and runs into a house

Driver Jeffrey Evans (Ewert)
NW 11th at Meadow
Saturday night

Sunday morning update: Driver identified as Jeffrey Evans (Ewert), Toledo, charged with drunk driving, reckless driving and hit and run. Bail: $45,000
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A man driving home lost control of his white van on NW Spruce in Toledo Saturday night, went over an embankment, through some blackberry bushes and hit the southeast corner of a house that faces NW Meadow.

Occupants were at home at the time and said they heard something loud and went outside to see what it was. They told police a man was getting out of the van that had hit their house on the southeast corner and had damaged their chain link fence as well.

At one point the neighbors said the driver, later identified as Jeffrey Evans, was walking away but arriving officers managed to find him and detain him for questioning.

Officers put Evans in the back of a Toledo Police car and was last seen taking him to PCH in Newport for a blood draw to ascertain whether he was drunk behind the wheel. Police say the test results indicated he was drunk behind the wheel.

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