International task force to discuss protecting West Coast from oil spills

SEATTLE, Wash. - States and provinces on the Pacific Ocean will gather this year in Seattle to discuss emerging issues in energy and how best to protect the West Coast from oil spills.

The Washington Department of Ecology is hosting this year’s annual meeting. The task force, known as the Pacific States/British Columbia Oil Spill Task Force, is composed of Alaska, British Columbia, Washington, Oregon, California and Hawaii.

The states will update one another on their spill-response programs and initiatives. They’ll also learn about how the transportation of energy is changing along the West Coast; characteristics of new and emerging fuels; arctic issues; and risks of oil spills from vessel traffic.

Man Arrested in Kelso for Brandishing a Weapon and Harrassing Another Driver on I-5

KELSO, Wash. - On 9/23/09 at 11:30 a.m. the Washington State Patrol responded to a report of a weapon brandishing on I-5 near Hwy 12. John Francis Damazio a 50 year old, Enumclaw resident was driving a 2004 Chevrolet pickup pulling a flat bed trailer. Damazio was I-5 southbound traveling in the fast lane.

Lloyd Feldman a 51 year old, Huntington Beach, California resident was driving a 2008 Pontiac. Feldman was I-5 southbound traveling in the slow lane. Feldman made a lane change into the fast lane. Damazio reportedly started to tailgate Feldman, and displayed a pistol. Feldman accelerated in an attempt to get away from Damazio. Damazio reportedly pursued Feldman reaching speeds of 90 mph. At one point Damazio reportedly pulled along side Feldman and displayed the pistol a second time.

Troopers from the Washington State Patrol took Damazio into custody on I-5 near Allen Street in Kelso. At the time of his arrest Damazio had a loaded pistol on his person as well as a concealed weapons permit. Damazio stated “I didn’t point it at anybody”.

Damazio was booked into the Lewis County jail on charges of Displaying a weapon and Harassment.

Hoquiam Farmer’s Market News – Spooner Strawberry Edition

Okay, so it’s raining. Again. But- the June Gloom is soon going to pass and the sun is going to emerge in full glory! I Promise! So, because I know this is just around the corner, I ordered up a massive amount of plants for your garden. All of your favorites, plus ones that you really need to try. The lettuce and Swiss chard starts will fir in beautifully among all the bright flowers, and hanging baskets will cheer up the porch instantly.
Red Charm Peonies continue to arrive from Elma, bringing their luxuriant and grandiose beauty to brighten up a rainy day or to help celebrate a graduate in your family. I love their adundance- the stem is so heavy with petals that it finally must droop, which looks even more inviting.
I’ve saved my best for last. Every so often we at the market become privy to hush hush insider information. Things that are spoken of only in hopeful whispers, carefully guarded secrets. I’m talking about Spooner’s Strawberries. Yes, I know! I heard your gasp of joy. The head Mrs. Strawberry herself, Sue Spooner, has informed us that we should have strawberries by Father’s Day! Big, juicy, succulent, bursting with flavor, fully ripe- REAL strawberries! 

Hoquiam Plywood Sale Planned to Close by Friday

HOQUIAM, Wash. - The sale of Hoquiam Plywood should be completed by this Friday, General Manager Mark McFeely said yesterday "The street vacation will allow the closing of the deal. They will hear from me in the morning, and we hope we'll the deal closed by Friday."
The Hoquiam City Council voted to vacate portions of Panama and Woodlawn streets that had to be cleared in order to close the sale of the property.
McFeely said the hiring process will begin this week under their new name Hoquiam Plywood Products
A lot of the workers that were there will be coming back, because they know how to run the machines. - Mark McFeely, Hoquiam Plywood general manager
The employee-owned mill shut down late last year due to poor market conditions, Pacific States Industries Inc. of San Jose, California has been working with the 100 shareholders to purchase the mill.

Montesano Grapples With Park Trees

MONTESANO, Wash. - The Home of the Tree Farm is trying to figure out what to do with some baby Sequoia that are dying from the top down.
Montesano Resident Tom Fredrickson urged the council at this week's meeting "let's not let a few bucks stand in the way of keeping some iconic things. My high school's gone, the poplars are gone, you're not taking my trees."
Some business owners near Fleet Park had expressed concern over the 70 year old trees, a citizen survey 2 years ago said %88 percent of respondents wanted to keep them.

Over 60 years ago Rubin Fleet donated the city block to Montesano for exclusive use as a Park. Mr. Fleet was a resident of Montesano until he and his wife moved to California to form Consolidated Aircraft, a very successful manufacturer of two-winged airplanes.

At the time of the donation of the Park property several Sequoia Trees were planted at the rear of the park as well as other landscaping vegetation. As a condition of the dedication of land, any substantial changes to the Park, are required to be approved by the Fleet Foundation. Throughout the years, landscape maintenance has been the only activity undertaken, along with the addition of a Pavilion.

Washington Celebrates National Telecommunicator Week April 8-14

The week of April 8-14, 2012 is National Telecommunicator Week, intended to honor the first link in the chain of emergency police, fire and medical responses. On Thursday April 12, 2012, from 9am to 4pm the Washington State Patrol Communications Division will have a display of equipment used by dispatchers in the State Patrol and public education material for calling 9-1-1.

If you’ve ever been the victim of a crime, been in a collision, reported a fire or needed emergency medical help, you’ve called 9-1-1 and been helped by a telecommunicator.

At the Washington State Patrol they are known officially as Communications Officers. Other agencies use the more formal term of Telecommunicator, or similar titles. The common term is “dispatcher:” the person who answers the phone or radio and sends help where it’s needed.

Dispatchers are usually the first people to know when something really bad has happened, we count on them to get our emergency response off on the right foot, and they invariably come through with flying colors. - State Patrol Chief John R. Batiste

No Tsunami Threat to US West Coast

HONOLULU (AP) - U.S. officials say a 7.4-magnitude earthquake off the coast of Japan is not expected to create a tsunami threat in Hawaii or the West Coast.

Federal agencies say that area includes Hawaii, California, Oregon, Washington, Alaska and British Columbia, Canada. No tsunami warning, watch or advisory is in effect for these areas.

The Japan meteorological agency issued a tsunami warning for a wave of up to about 3 feet. The warning was issued for a coastal area of Japan already torn apart by last month's tsunami. Buildings as far away as Tokyo shook for about a minute. Hundreds of aftershocks have shaken the northeast region devastated by the March 11 earthquake, but few have been stronger than 7.0.

Time to Check for Unclaimed Property

OLYMPIA, Wash. - It’s time to check the Department of Revenue’s unclaimed property database again even if you didn’t find anything last time.

“No fooling. Your odds of finding unclaimed cash are better than ever,” Department Director Suzan DelBene said.

That’s because the Department has added 623,000 names and $91.5 million to its huge online database at after businesses reported new unclaimed property late last year.

While the Department was able to pay $44.5 million to more than 98,000 claimants during Fiscal Year 2010, the database has grown to about 3 million names and $830 million.

The Department mails claim forms to the last-known addresses of potential claimants, but much of the unclaimed paychecks, utility deposits, bank accounts, refunds, stocks and bonds, and contents from safe deposit boxes, among other lost property still goes unclaimed.

Tsunami Advisory Lifted for Washington Coast, Flood Watch Extended for Chehalis

The Tsunami Advisory has been lifted for the Washington, BC, and Northern Oregon Coasts. An Advisory remains in effect for the Southern Oregon and California Coast as of 7 pm.


Chuck Wallace with the Emergency Management Agency reminds Grays Harbor and Thurston County residents that a flood watch remains in effect for the Chehalis River until 4am Saturday. They do not expect the river to crest much over flood stage of 21 feet.

Community Effort Thwarts Car Thieves

SHELTON, Wash. - Two Shelton men are in jail today after a community effort in which residents of the Skokomish Valley, Troopers from the Washington State Patrol, Agents from the Department of Wildlife, and Mason County Sheriff’s Deputies all banded together to capture the two alleged car thieves. 


Currently in custody at the Mason County Jail is Javier M. Valencia, 33, Shelton, and Joshua B. Sherman, 31, Shelton.  Both are charged with possession of a stolen motor vehicle and Sherman is charged with Eluding.


This incident started to unfold at about 7AM on Monday when a North Blevins Road resident was awoken to see her 1993 Honda Civic being stolen followed by another Honda leaving the area quickly.