Archive for August 2012

Aberdeen Fire Claims Pets, Displaces Eight Tenants

ABERDEEN, Wash. – A single unit apartment fire in the 200 block of E First street displaced eight tenants, claiming some pets.
Aberdeen Fire Chief Dave Carlberg said from the scene “No injuries, we have eight tenants probably going to be displaced so we’re going to get a hold of the Red Cross.”
The renter said that she put a cigarette out in her ashtray and went to the bathroom, when she returned her matress was in flames.
Carlberg said the fire gutted one apartment before 9 this morning, causing smoke and heat damage to at least three others, an offical cause of the fire has not been determined.

Man Attempts to Elude Officers by Hiding in Hoquiam River

HOQUIAM, Wash. – A Pacific Beach man tried to escape arrest yesterday by swiming back and forth across the Hoquiam river. Chief Criminal Deputy Dave Pimental tells us the pursuit began when a Sheriff’s Deputy spotted the man passing another vehicle in a no passing zone just West of Hoquiam. The man abandoned his 92 Honda Accord, and passenger, in the Hoquiam Shipyard parking lot, before jumping into the river. When he was met by Hoquiam officers on the other side, he attempted to swim back and forth until he tired out and surrendered to officers.
Pimental said the 28 year old was booked into the Grays Harbor County jail on multiple charges after being treated for possible hypothermia, his female passenger was cited for providing a false statement to an officer.

Coast Guard Urges Safe Boating on Labor Day Weekend

Here are three steps every boater can take to reduce the risk of accidents and/or prevent serious injuries and ensure a safe and enjoyable weekend:

Wear a Life jacket

Boaters should always wear a lifejacket. The number one cause of boating fatalities is drowning, most often by sudden, unexpected entry into the water. Wearing a lifejacket increases the chances of surviving a boating accident. The law states you must have a life jacket, or personal floatation device, for every person on board. The Coast Guard recommends boaters wear lifejackets at all times. It is much more difficult to locate, access and don a life jacket after an accident occurs.

Boat Sober

Never boat under the influence of alcohol and/or drugs. Alcohol and drugs affect judgment, vision, balance and coordination. Alcohol, combined with boat motion, vibration, engine noise, sun, wind and spray accelerates an operator’s impairment. Intoxicated boaters can face both federal and state charges with penalties of up to one year in prison and fines up to $100,000. The legal definition of intoxication in Oregon and Washington is blood alcohol content of .08. Don’t be fooled into thinking that lesser amounts of alcohol consumption are OK, or that passengers aren’t at risk if they drink. The latest study on boating and alcohol indicates that the risk of a fatality rises significantly at amounts as low as .02 BAC.

Dress for the water, not the weather:

Water temperatures throughout the Pacific Northwest remain in the 50s during this time of year. The risk of hypothermia increases with lower water temperatures, and survivability time in the water decreases. Wet suits and other personal protective equipment assist the body as an insulator, limiting exposure to dangerous water temperatures.

Generally speaking, recreational boaters should make a concerted effort to keep out of the way of large commercial vessels, including ferries, tug and tow configurations, and freighters. Due to powerful currents these vessels must maintain a moderate speed, and it can often take more than a mile to stop. Making way for larger vessels promotes the safety of all mariners.

Additional steps all boaters can take:

  • File a float plan and leave it with someone at home. A float plan says where you are going and when you plan on returning, which helps emergency responders locate distressed mariners. CLICK HERE for more information on float plans.
  • Have a marine band radio and visual distress signals. All of these devices will greatly assist you if you are in distress. CLICK HERE for more information on visual distress signals.
  • Have a registered 406MHz Emergency Position Indicating Radio Beacon. CLICK HERE to learn more about registering your EPIRB

The Coast Guard and local marine agencies ask boaters to help be their eyes and ears on the water. Boaters who see suspicious activity should immediately call 911, Coast Guard District 13 Command Center at (206) 217-7001, Coast Guard Sector Puget Sound at (206) 217-6001, Coast Guard Sector Columbia River (503) 861-6211 or the Coast Guard’s National Response Center at 1-877-24WATCH (1-877-249-2824).

Two Women Cited For Furnishing Liquor to Minor After Chehalis Death

Talia Date and Megan Day, both 22 of Chehalis, are being referred to the Lewis County Prosecutor’s Office for furnishing liquor to a minor, a gross misdemeanor. Sheriff Steve Mansfield tells KBKW “Through a lengthy investigation by my Office, it was determined that both women supplied alcohol to minors the night of the party in which 16 year old Tyler Gonzalez died.

Gonzalez was at a party in the 100 block of Brockway Road and had been consuming alcohol. He wandered away from the party and was later struck by a vehicle while lying in the roadway. As a result of being struck by the vehicle, Gonzalez died of blunt internal trauma to the head, chest, and abdomen. His post mortem ethanol level was .17.

“The supplying and voluntary consumption of alcohol ultimately led to Tyler Gonzalez’s death. This is a sad, tragic and preventable accident. The initial actions of these two women ultimately set things in motion for the tragedy to occur. Tyler voluntarily drank the alcohol; however, one must wonder if he would still be alive today had he not had access and consumed the alcohol which ultimately caused him to make some poor decisions resulting in his death. Family, friends, relatives and the woman who struck Tyler will be forever affected by the choices made that night. I would hope the circumstances surrounding Tyler’s death will serve as a sobering reminder of the consequences and long term effects of people supplying alcohol to minors,”said Sheriff Mansfield.

Beach Report Gives 3 Washington Beaches “F”

Swimming in polluted water can cause upper respiratory infections, stomach flus, skin rashes and ear infections.

Oregon beaches were quite clean this summer, with all 11 regularly monitored beaches in Clatsop and Tillamook counties receiving A grades for the third straight year. Unfortunately, while 41 beaches in Oregon were monitored throughout the summer, only the 11 sites were monitored frequently enough (at least weekly) to be considered for the report.

Despite the generally upbeat news about beach water quality in the Northwest, beachgoers should be concerned about proposed federal funding cuts that jeopardize ongoing monitoring of sites in Washington, and other sites throughout the United States.

The federal Administration’s proposed budget for 2013 eliminates all funding for the development and implementation of beach monitoring and notification programs. Washington’s Department of Ecology & Health and Oregon’s Department of Health Services rely heavily on these funds to monitor beaches. If federal support is slashed, strapped local agencies face the daunting task of securing alternative funding.

To learn more about specific beaches in Oregon and Washington, users can check updated weekly grades at Heal the Bay offers the searchable online database as a free public service. Users can find out which beaches are safe and unsafe, check recent water quality history and look up details on beach closures.

A free Beach Report Card app for IPhone and Android users allows ocean lovers to check A through F grades, weather conditions and users tips for more than 650 beaches along the Pacific Coast. Links to the app can be found at

Heal the Bay has graded more than 500 California beaches for two decades, helping protect the health of millions of ocean goers each year. Building on that success, program managers expanded reporting to Washington and Oregon beaches in 2010.

About the Beach Report Card
The Beach Report Card is based on the routine monitoring of beaches by Oregon’s Department of Health Services and Washington’s Department of Ecology, and would not be possible without their cooperation. These agencies collect and analyze marine water samples for bacteria that indicate pollution from numerous sources, including fecal waste. Heal the Bay compiles the data, analyzes it and assigns easy-to-understand letter grades. Its methodology is the only one endorsed by California’s State Water Resources Control Board, a government entity.

Heal the Bay’s Beach Report Card is made possible by the generous support of the The Diller-von Furstenberg Family Foundation, simplehuman, LACarGuy, the Surf Industry Manufacturers Association (SIMA) and the Grousbeck Family Foundation.

For a PDF version of this year’s detailed report card please visit

Ecology Releases Draft Fish-Consumption Report

After receiving several hundred comments on the first draft, Ecology revised the technical support document. The update:

  • · Focuses on scientific and technical issues, and removes perceived regulatory decisions, including a recommended range for fish consumption rates. Decisions on how to use the data will be part of the formal public regulatory process of revising the state’s surface water quality standards with human health criteria, which will include a fish consumption rate.
  • · Adds more information about fish consumption and exposure to contamination faced by both the general and recreational fishing population.

You can find the second draft of the Fish Consumption Rates Technical Support Document on Ecology’s website. Comments will be accepted through Oct. 26.

Here’s how you can submit comments:

  • · Mail them to Adrienne Dorrah, Washington Department of Ecology, Toxics Cleanup Program, P.O. Box 47600, Olympia, WA 98504-7600.

Ecology will review, consider and respond to all comments. The second draft document may be modified based on public comments.

Ecology expects to finalize the technical support document in late fall. Staff will hold technical meetings to discuss the draft document in the next few months. Meetings will be announced at a later date.

AHAB Siren Testing Monday September 3

  • · First Monday of every month at noon
  • · September 3, 2012
  • · All Grays Harbor County Sirens

Montesano, WA – Washington State Emergency Management will conduct its monthly countywide AHAB (All Hazard Alert Broadcast) Siren test on Monday, September 3, 2012, at noon.

AHAB sirens are located in Pacific Beach, Copalis Beach, Ocean City, Ocean Shores, Hoquiam, Aberdeen, Moclips, Westport and Grayland. All Grays Harbor County sirens will be included in the test beginning at noon.

AHAB sirens have a range of about one mile in radius depending on topography and weather. The activation will be Westminster Chimes followed by a test voice message. These sirens are meant to provide emergency notification to people who are OUTDOORS! Residents and businesses located within a tsunami inundation area are encouraged to maintain a working NOAA Weather Radio.

Please DO NOT CALL 911 regarding this testing. If you have any questions or reports regarding the test, please contact Grays Harbor County Emergency Management at 360-249-3911 or [email protected].

Westport, Ilwaco Anglers Can Keep Wild and Hatchery Coho

“With such a large percentage of the coho catch quota remaining in each of those two areas this late in the season, we can allow anglers to keep both hatchery and wild coho without exceeding our conservation objectives for wild salmon,” Pattillo said.

Through Aug. 26, anglers fishing out of Ilwaco, where there is a coho catch quota of 34,860 fish, had caught 8,861 coho. Anglers fishing off Westport, where there is a coho catch quota of 25,800 fish, had caught 6,507 coho.

Anglers have a two-salmon daily limit in all four marine areas off the Washington coast. Up to two chinook may be retained in all areas.

All ocean areas (marine areas 1-4) are open to salmon fishing seven days a week.

Ocean salmon fisheries are currently scheduled to continue through Sept. 23 in marine areas 2, 3 and 4, and through Sept. 30 in Marine Area 1.

Fishery managers will continue to monitor the ocean salmon fishery throughout the season, and announce any other changes on WDFW’s website at .

Additional information on the ocean fishery, including minimum size limits and area catch guidelines, is available in WDFW’s Fishing in Washington rules pamphlet, available at . 

Hoquiam Farmer’s Market News – Canner’s Edition

Sometime’s it is very, very hard to embrace change. It comes as a shock this year that Labor Day has snuck up on us and is now only days away. Even though the official transition from Summer to Fall doesn’t come until September 22nd, we all know that our summer is fading and sometimes comes to an abrupt end on Labor Day. I am not ready. I still have summer dresses in the closet which haven’t been worn yet this year. I feel like a brat complaining- so much of the country has sizzled for months and we have been blessed by the cool breezes of a temperate climate. So, I’ll focus instead on all the great things that happen thanks to the change of seasons!
Labor Day can mean parties, picnics, family reunions- or, it can be celebrated in true Coastal style by the imaginative folks at Pacific Beach. Where else can you find a Kelpers Festival and Shake Rat Rendezvous? I ask you! The kiddies parade is at noon on Saturday and the adult parade is Sunday at noon, with constant entertaining activities all weekend long. One year we watched as teddy bears were launched on little balloons, and if you have always wanted to watch a skilled Shake Rat in action, the competition is fierce on Sunday! Kelp isn’t nearly as exciting, it just lies there on the sand.
Hoquiam’s Loggers Playday is always held the weekend after Labor Day, and this year you have a chance to be a part of the action without having to enter the falling or bucking contests. I have always wanted to experience a Flash Mob. The videos on YouTube intrigue me, the seemingly random gradual gathering of a group which then burst into song or dance, startling and thrilling the unsuspecting audience. All I can say is, if you want to participate, call Luis at the Lighthouse Ballet Academy, #310-883-3105. No special skills are required, and you’ll finally have your long awaited chance to be ‘discovered’.
The squirrels have been busy getting their supply of cones ready for winter, and so have I. If only we could develop a taste for Fir cones, putting up food for the cold months would be a cinch. Luckily for us, we are surrounded by bounty, much of it free for the harvesting. Joe and I are natural born foragers. The apple trees on our own property are now 100 years old and our pet deer consider any fruit on them to be their rightful dinner. We’re so whipped by our deer that we go off and find our apples elsewhere. How embarrassing is that? We have favorite pear, plum, and apple trees that still thrive in deserted homestead farms. I call them our Free Range fruit trees.
Back when our ancestors decided to leave home and venture to the far, far west, they would pack the wagon with the necessities which our wilderness could not provide- fruit trees were at the top of the list. No self respecting homesteader would contemplate the future of a hard life in the deep woods without bringing good tree stock along. Apples weren’t an occasional lunch snack back then, they were a necessary nutritional staple food. Our hardy settlers didn’t pack a single variety- they had multiple trees which bore fruit beginning in mid-summer all the way into winter.
The first tree to bear was the Yellow Transparent Apple, highly prized for the tart flavor which makes the very best applesauce and pies. Picked slightly unripe, you can’t beat this apple for bringing the best flavors to an apple pie. Unless you are talking about the classic Gravenstein Apple. A firmer apple, it helps to saute these apples in butter before putting them into the crust. Which is why this is also a great apple to can for your winter apple pie supply. Other apples were grown for their juice, giving the family a great excuse to partner with their neighbors and build an Apple Cider Press. My father was the proud owner of a press and it was the honored guest of many cider press parties. I first learned square dancing in Oiva Knute’s barn at their annual September party. The old cider press saw one too many party, so now I satisfy my apple cider cravings with Lattin’s Cider.
Lattin’s presses their cider on Monday, so I was right there to scoop up a fresh batch. It’s now sitting proudly on our cooler shelves, just to the left of Anthony’s Sausages. With apples and apple cider to look forward to, now I can face Labor Day with complete happiness!
Barbara Bennett Parsons, manager of the Grays Harbor Farmers Market in Hoquiam 538-9747
Deidra’s Deli 538-5580

Traffic Fines Double in School Zones


A reminder to everyone that school is starting again. Rochester School District began classes this week and the districts in the rest of the county begin after Labor Day. Keep a close eye out for kids walking and riding bikes to school.
Pay particular attention in school zones, and remember that traffic fines double in posted school zones. Many school zones are marked by signs that limit speed to 20 mph “when flashing” while others limit that same speed “when children are present”. Make sure you abide by these limits and help ensure that our children remain safe.
Crossing guards are also present at many school zones and it is imperative, and required by law, that motorists follow the directions of these crossing guards.
The bottom line, be aware and safe as you drive throughout the county and particularly in and around schools and school zones.
Drive safe!