6 February 2014
Winter Storm Warnings…
There were plenty of school closures around western Oregon this morning, but locally everything was on schedule.
Transportation supervisors at Mapleton and Siuslaw schools were out early this morning cruising bus routes and watching the weather as a pacific storm front collided with an arctic air mass over the northwest.
Weather was cold, but still dry, when buses left the barn to begin the rounds and classes were on schedule.
Both superintendents… Sean Wiencek (WINN-sek) at Siuslaw and Jodi O’Mara at Mapleton said they would monitor the situation through the day and make adjustments as needed; neither ruled out an early release if conditions warranted it.
Schools in central Lane, Linn, and Benton counties, as well as Lincoln County closed today. Classes on the Oregon State University campus in Corvallis were also cancelled.
Interstate 5, southbound, just north of Albany was closed this morning because of a mult-vehicle crash. ODOT representatives said as many as 20 vehicles were involved. They also responded to multiple crashes on Highway 101 on the north coast.
It’s not too late to review your emergency preparations and plans. Snow and cold weather has highlighted the need to get ready.
Joan Edwards with the West Lane Emergency Operations Group says you can get take steps right now.
Edwards says something as simple as setting aside an emergency kit with a few bottles of water; non-perishable food; and your regular prescriptions will make life much easier if you have to leave home in a hurry.
In this case you’re going to want to stay home.
Disconnect hoses from outside faucets; open cupboard doors and make sure all drafts are closed off to help keep pipes from freezing. The main thing is to keep warm and dry… and monitor local media to stay abreast of current conditions.
County Chief Selection Nearing
The search for a new administrator at Lane County is entering the final phase.
Lane County Commissioners met in an ‘executive’ session yesterday morning to hear from a consultant hired to recruit and screen applicants. West Lane Commissioner Jay Bozievich said 23 applications were sifted through and narrowed down. The search coordinator conducted skype interviews with a dozen and produced a list of six potential finalists.
Bozievich said five of those were selected to come for personal interviews February 19th.
In addition to meeting with the commission, the finalists will be interviewed by two different panels made up of county employees and residents.
The commissioner said they hope to have a new administrator on board by the end of April.
Another “ocean anchored” power generation plan has been approved for off the Oregon Coast.
A Seattle company gained regulatory approval this week for the west coast’s first floating wind farm. Principal Power is working on a test project that would place five floating wind turbines off the coast… 15 miles west of Charleston.
The five turbines would be anchored in about 14-hundred feet of water and connected to each other… and the shore… with a cable.
The turbines themselves would rise 600 feet above the water at their highest point.
At least one commercial fishing organization has agreed to support the project, but the leader of the Coos Bay Trawlers Association says they still have concerns.
Similar off-shore wind generation plants currently operate in Europe; China and Japan. Two are under development on the East Coast of the U.S.