Disasters & Accidents

Officials Say Fire Near Bend Human Caused

Jun 10, 2014
Central Oregon Fire Info

Updated 6:17pm.

Firefighters had to scramble Tuesday afternoon to extinguish another wildfire on the outskirts of Bend.

Fire spokeswoman Lisa Clark says a lookout on Lava Butte spotted the smoke a near the trailhead of a popular mountain-biking area known as Phil's Trails on the western outskirts of Bend.   Helicopter and engine crews quickly put it out.

John Rosman / OPB

Updated at 2:01pm

Officials say a lone shooter killed one student and injured a teacher at Reynolds High School this morning.  The shooter is also dead.

Troutdale Police Chief Scott Anderson said authorities have tentatively identified the gunman, but aren't ready yet to release the name.

Anderson: "I can tell you that the weapon used was a rifle. one teacher was injured, with non life-threatening injuries. The teacher was treated at the scene."

Central Oregon Fire Info

Fire crews are bracing for more warm, windy weather as they battle a 68-hundred acre blaze in Central Oregon. The Two Bulls Fire west of Bend prompted evacuations over the weekend. About 50 people are still not able to return home. Crews have built a preliminary line around the blaze. Fire Information Officer Lisa Clark says winds up to 20 miles per hour may cause flare-ups. She says weather conditions are more like mid-summer.

Harrisburg Fire Dept.

Voters in Harrisburg are considering a 20-year bond to raise $ 4.2 million for a new fire station. The measure would cost the average home-owner 88 cents per thousand dollars of assessed value annually.
The current fire station was built 50 years ago. The 75-hundred square foot building has only one bathroom and no live-in quarters. Harrisburg Fire Chief John Goucher says there's not enough space for equipment to be stored inside.

Food For Lane County

Food for Lane County in Eugene is installing a generator Monday. The food bank will be the only one in the state with backup power in case of a large-scale disaster.

Food for Lane County stores about a half million pounds of food in its Eugene warehouse -- about half of it is perishable. The generator will prevent massive food loss and spoilage if there's a power outage.

Dawn Marie Woodward is with Food For Lane County:

Ashley Ahearn

The landslide in Oso, Washington served as a devastating reminder of one fact of life in the Northwest: landslides happen.

In some places, it’s a risk people have learned to live with.

Landslides have wiped out the only access road to one rural community along the Skykomish River three times since December. A dozen homes in the Mt. Index River Sites community were destroyed by the slides. Fortunately no one was hurt.

Courtney Flatt

If you get lost hunting or wander off a hiking trail, a select group of volunteers may come to look for you. K-9 search and rescue teams spend countless hours training to make sure they can find you when you’re lost.

German shepherd Kia lifts her nose in the air, sniffs, and takes off. Kia is searching a nature preserve in the middle of Richland, Washington. She’s searching for missing hikers.

Miles of hiking trails wind around sagebrush and brambles. It’s bordered by the Yakima River.

Washington State Patrol

Seattle just wrapped up its wettest March on record.
Geologists say heavy rain in the Cascade Mountains northeast of Seattle was key in triggering the landslide that killed at least 24 people in the town of Oso last week.
But they say clearcutting nearby could also have worsened the risk of the hillside collapsing.

Kara McDermott

The death roll has risen to 21 following the massive landslide near Oso, Washington. But the number of missing has been lowered dramatically--to 30. Over the weekend, the search for victims continued. At the same time, residents in the nearby town of Darrington paused to pray and reflect.

Here at First Baptist Church, they prayed for the families of the victims. Members of the congregation also told stories of survival. Steve Sconce was supposed to have been fixing a roof on a house directly in the path of the landslide.

Landslide Death Toll Rises, Number Of Missing Drops

Mar 30, 2014
Chris Lehman

The death toll has risen to 18 following the devastating landslide near Oso, Washington. One bright spot: The number of people missing has fallen dramatically. It's now down to 30.

Searchers are still pulling bodies from the debris…sometimes in pieces. Steve Schertzinger is a chaplain  with the nearby Marysville Police Department. He describes what it was like to deliver bad news to a grieving family member.

Steve Schertzinger: "We sat down and I just said well, the waiting is over. And then I cried. I cried."

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