Category Archives: Newport

Coast Guard Station Yaquina Bay Open House

Coast Guard SurfmanThe Coast Guard station Yaquina Bay is hosting a free open house at their Coast Guard Station tomorrow from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. The open house is open to the walk-in public. Citizens attending the open house are reminded that available parking is limited in the area. Visitors to the open house will be able to tour the Station’s grounds, the 47-foot Motor Lifeboats and a 25-foot Response Boat. Also available for tours, will be the Coast Guard Cutter Orcas, 110-foot patrol boat, which is home ported in Coos Bay.

Petty Officer Brian Ballenger said this is a way to show the public what they do. Visitors to the open house will be able to view pictures, videos and interact with crewmembers. For the safety of the general public and Coast Guard personnel, there will be a 100 percent identification check at the gate and all personal belongings are subject to search upon entry. Visitors are requested to wear closed-toed shoes and not bring bags or backpacks to the station.

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State Parks Ban Campfires and Beach Fires

IMG_4327The Oregon Parks and Recreation Department announced they are prohibiting all campfires in Oregon State Parks and other properties owned and managed by the department. The ban includes but is not limited to designated fire pits, tiki torches and candles. The ban also extends to fires on ocean beaches. The state park ban doesn’t apply to propane stoves and/or charcoal briquettes for cooking. North Lincoln Fire & Rescue District along with Newport Fire Department and Lincoln County Parks have also joined the recommendations set forth in the Oregon State Parks and Recreations burn restrictions extending them throughout all urban and rural areas.

Fire danger is at an extreme high, even in our normally-damp coastal areas. MG Devereux, OPRD Deputy Director said the goal is to avoid any accidental fires on OPRD property that would further tax limited firefighting resources. Most communities including Lincoln County have sent local firefighters and equipment to help with wildfires throughout the state. An unintentional fire in a state park Devereux said would add an unnecessary burden to firefighting efforts. Visitors planning a trip should check with park staff for the most current information, or by calling the state park information line at (800) 551-6949 or go online to

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New Chicks At The Aquarium

bird chicksFour pint-sized puffballs are shaking things up in the Oregon Coast Aquarium’s Seabird Aviary. The new arrivals, a common murre nicknamed Alice, and tufted puffins nicknamed Stanley, Stewart and Stella, hatched between July 21 and August 1. “They just fill the palm of your hand right now, no bigger than a lemon, and most of that is feathers,” said aviculturist Heather Olson. The baby birds’ diminutive size is temporary, and they are already packing on grams by the day.

Each set of proud parents spend their time snuggling with their young chick to keep it warm and deliver it tiny whole fish to eat. Aquarium staff perform daily visual examinations of each chick and weigh them to ensure they are growing at a healthy rate. No word on the new additions’ genders yet, that requires a blood test, and the little birds need to grow a bit more first.

Common murres nest in the open on top of rocks, just like penguins, their famous doppelgangers from the southern hemisphere. Parents take turns tucking the tiny two and a half ounce chick under their wings to keep it warm and shielded from curious members of the Aquarium’s flock. Keen-eyed visitors may spot one of these baby birds nestled up against their parents’ bellies in the Seabird Aviary exhibit. Continue reading

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Samaritan Health District Board Asked To Provide Detox Services

By Kiera Morgan

SPCHCheryl Connell director of Lincoln County Health and Human Services along with District Attorney Michelle Branum and County Commissioner Bill Hall were in attendance at the Samaritan Communities Health District Board meeting on 8/17. They were there to ask the board to consider offering 10-15 beds for alcohol and drug detox as part of the new Samaritan Hospital Medical building.

Connell stated that the Lincoln Interagency public safety coordinating council pointed out the lack of resources available to those struggling with alcohol and drug abuse since the closure of the Truman Center. Board member Dr. David Long said the amount of beds asked may be a problem and asked if the county or other non-profit might be willing to collaborate. He said they are limited in the number of beds they can have as a critical access hospital.

Cheryl said it was important to have the facility in the medical portion of the hospital as that is where it would do the most good. Connell cited the Pacific Communities health assessment showing excessive drinking and drug abuse are risk factors for many health outcomes. “This is tax payer money that is going for these new facilities, and so we are trying to ensure that the board understands that in the board’s own community health assessment the need for a detox facility came up as a very high priority and it wasn’t included in the planning of the new medical facility.” Continue reading


Filed under Lincoln County, Lincoln County Health and Human Services, Newport

Get Ready Lincoln County Community Resiliency Presentation And Emergency Readiness Fair.

Get Ready Lincoln County 2015, Sept 12The Event is Free and Open to the Public!

Community Resiliency: What we can learn from Joplin, 10:00 – 11:30 am , Samaritan Center for Health Education Center, 740 SW 9th St, Newport, Oregon (free event to the public)
Get Ready Lincoln County, Emergency Readiness Fair, 12:00 – 3:00 pm, Lincoln County Fairgrounds, 633 NE 3rd St, Newport, Oregon (free event to the public)

The readiness fair will provide various booths with educational information, demonstrations on how to mitigate hazards in your home, business or community places of gathering. Local public safety representatives and volunteers will be on hand to help guide attendees or answer the “How to”, “What if” and “Why should I” type questions they may have. Local vendors will be on hand with emergency readiness kits, gadgets, and nutritional items, etc. to help you in your preparedness efforts. Featured exhibits at the fair include:
Children’s Bike Helmets, Fitting of and Bike Safety Rodeo, sponsored by Northwest Natural Gas and Newport Police Department
Travel size Emergency Red Cross Kits – to the first 100 attendee’s, sponsored by American Red Cross and Northwest Natural Gas
Emergency Go Kit (1 Day Adult Kit) Door Prize (2 each), sponsored by the Office of Oregon Emergency Management
Key Note Speaker, Director Lane Roberts, Missouri Department of Public Safety, Community Resiliency: What we can learn from Joplin, presentation prior to readiness fair (see location, time information below), sponsored by Lincoln County Sheriff’s Office

Just In Time Training Topics
Prepare in a Year:
Water resiliency for home and on the go
Handwashing, how clean is clean?
What’s C.E.R.T. got to do with it? (Community Emergency Response Teams)
The Wiggle Watcher Challenger – activity stations on important aspects of earthquakes and tsunamis
Pets and animals in disasters: Go or stay…What do you need to be ready?
Emergency Kits: Make your own, purchase premade, benefits of both and examples
Food Ration Bars: Taste before you buy…samples, samples, samples
Getting Back to Business – continuity planning for businesses
Amateur Radio – What’s your downtime family communication if your cell phone won’t ring?
Emergency Preparedness Trivia: Put on your game face and show us what you know
Utility Safety: What you should know about gas and electricity safety
Marine and Water Safety: Are you sure you’re ready to take on the sea’s, river or the surf?
Emergency Medical Transportation/Care Services: Life Flight, Reach, Pacific West Ambulance
Know Before You Go: National Weather Service and Oregon Department of Transportation.

LCSO emergency alert

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Filed under Lincoln City, Lincoln County, Newport, Oregon, Toledo, Waldport

Newport Looks At Panhandling And Homeless Problems

By Kiera Morgan

homeless campingThe Newport City Council at a recent work session discussed the issue of panhandling and the amount of homeless camps within the city. According to police Chief Mark Miranda they are getting some complaints about the panhandlers and those who are hanging out and drinking in public areas. He guessed that right now there might be up to 100 homeless in the city.

It was pointed out that some panhandlers are getting more aggressive and approaching people in their cars or following them out of stores. Chief Miranda said they are looking at an ordinance that would make it a violation to cause a car to stop in order to solicit funds. It was pointed out that not all of those who are homeless are panhandling. City manager Spencer Nebel said other cities in the state including Portland have made it a violation to pass items from your car while driving to another person. Continue reading

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Replacing Big Creek Dam Will Be Costly

By Larry Coonrod

Newport city hallNEWPORT—The latest engineering report on the seismic stability of the Big Creek dams recommends taking out the lower dam completely and building a new one on the upper lake. Big Creek Dam 1 was built in 1951. Construction on the 56-foot-tall upper Big Creek Dam 2 finished in 1968. Structurally, both dams are sound. It’s the soil underneath that is an issue.

Big Creek 1 sits on top of 60 feet of sandy material. About 30-feet of the same material fills the space between the base of the upper dam and bedrock. Consultant Verena Winters with HDR Engineering told city councilors last week that the dams might deform and fail during an even moderate earthquake. Newport discovered the issue in 2011 during construction of its new water treatment plant.

HDR’s report lays out three options to stabilize or replace the upper dam: Build on top of it or construct a new earthen or concrete dam downstream.

Lower Dam a Goner

Winters said HDR recommends removing the much smaller lower reservoir entirely.  “The benefit to fix that dam doesn’t weigh out the storage volume,” she said. “It would be way too much money for what you’d get out of this dam.”

HDR recommends constructing a roller compacted concrete dam. The concrete option has a higher seismic stability and lower maintenance cost than an earthen dam.

To meet current and future water demand, the upper reservoir would more than double in storage capacity: from 970 to 2,270 acre-feet.

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