Additional information on this morning’s incident at the Port of Longview is coming out, reporting that a Longshoreman was killed and three other people were injured when a mooring line parted. The incident happened at about 1:35 am, as the Motor Vessel ANSAC Splendor was being moved at Berth 5. As the ship was being moved from one loading hatch to another, a line snapped in half, recoiling toward the dock and the ship. 34 year-old Byron Jacobs was struck and killed, while the chief mate for the ship was critically injured. He was taken by LifeFlight to Southwest Washington Medical Center, and is listed in critical condition. Another Longshoreman and a security guard were also hit, but their injuries are “non-life-threatening.” The ANSAC Splendor remains moored at Berth 5, while the Coast Guard and Washington Labor and Industries conduct investigations.
Archive | June, 2018
Security at Nippon Dynawave reports that someone trespassed on the millsite yesterday afternoon, speeding around the property before driving through a gate to escape. Security at the mill on Industrial Way reports that a young man drove a white minivan onto the property at a high rate of speed, at about 11:45 yesterday morning. They say that the man drove recklessly around the property, then left by driving through the arms at Gate 4, in the 1700 block of Industrial Way. The van was last seen heading toward Oregon. Authorities in Oregon were alerted, but they didn’t find the suspect. Because of the security breach, the company is required to report the incident to the Coast Guard.
The City of Rainier is getting dinged for multiple violations that have been reported at the Wastewater Treatment Plant, with the Oregon Department of Environmental Quality handing down a fine of $23,700. DEQ says that there were at least 36 incidents in 2017 and 2018, where raw sewage was discharged directly into the Columbia River. DEQ also says that the plant failed to notify the agency about those overflows, and they failed to properly report water quality monitoring results. Rainier Mayor Jerry Cole took to social media with his response, saying that many of the problems are due to “an employee falsifying documentation and not doing their job.” Cole says that the specific employee is no longer with the city, and he says that person may still face criminal prosecution. Cole says that he doesn’t think that the fines are fair, and that they should be paid by the employee that caused the violations. The city has 20 days to file an appeal; Cole is asking for additional public input on the issue, publishing his phone number and asking for additional comments on social media.
Today’s the day that legal fireworks sales begin in Washington state. Fireworks stands are opening all around the area, selling fireworks through July 5th. State law allows fireworks to be sold between noon and 11 pm today. Starting tomorrow and going through July 4th, fireworks sales are legal between 9 am and 11 pm. On July 5th, you can buy fireworks between 9 am and 9 pm, but remember that after July 5th, it will be illegal to possess those fireworks.
Legal discharge times are from noon to 11 pm today; tomorrow through July 3rd, the hours are from 9 am to 11 pm. On Independence Day, you can shoot fireworks from 9 am until midnight, and on Jluy 5th, from 9 am to 11 pm. You’re reminded to observe the “Three B’s” when setting off fireworks; Be Prepared, Be Safe and Be Responsible. Get more information from your local fire agency.
Be aware of some survey work that’s being done today and tomorrow in the area of Tennant Way and 3rd Avenue in Longview. The City of Longview has some geotechnical engineers coming in today, doing survey work on the shoulders of the off-ramps and on-ramps at 3rd and Tennant Way. There could be some congestion as a result of this work, so be ready for that if you’re heading into that area.
The Kelso-Longview Chamber of Commerce has a couple of things going on today, starting with a seminar that’s intended to help local business people “become extraordinary.” The Chamber is bringing Chuck Nau down from Seattle for an interactive presentation that’s intended to provide strategies and solutions that will help boost business growth and profitability. The seminar runs from 10 to 11:30 am at the Cowlitz County Conference and Events Center; it’s free to attend, but you do need to pre-register at kelsolongviewchamber.org.
Immediately following the seminar with Chuck Nau, the Chamber will hold its quarterly membership luncheon, bringing the County Commissioners in for the annual “State of the County” repot. The Commissioners will discuss the budget, county parks, the landfill and other topics. This is scheduled to run from 11:45 am to 1:30 pm at the County Conference and Events Center, and you can also register for this event at kelsolongviewchamber.org.
WorkSource is teaming up with the Longview Public Library for another “Hiring Event,” inviting local employers and job seekers in to try and connect. This will run from noon until 3 pm, and is free to take part. You’re invited to bring your resume and to meet with local companies that are hiring today. If you don’t have a resume, classes are offered through WorkSource, or you can attend resume classes that are held at the Library on the first and third Fridays of each month. Call WorkSource at 360-577-2250 to learn more.
The Longview Downtowners invite you to “Unwind After 5” today at the J Squared Barrel House. They say that this will be an opportunity to learn about downtown businesses, and to network with some of those downtown business people. This will run from 5 to 7:30 pm at J Squared, located next to Lower Columbia CAP at 1520 Commerce Avenue. A no-host bar and food will be available.
Regardless of this morning’s decision from the Supreme Court, local labor groups plan to rally today, looking to show that this area remains “Union Strong.” The Cowlitz-Wahkiakum Central Labor Council put out the call, this morning, asking local union members to gather at the Kelso-Longview border with signs. The rally is scheduled to go from 11 am until noon. Get more information on the CWCLC Facebook page.
On a vote of 228-to-116, the Endangered Salmon and Fisheries Predation Prevention Act passed out of the House yesterday morning, and now moves on to the U. S. Senate for action. The prime sponsors of the bill are Third District Congresswoman Jaime Herrera Beutler and Congressman Kurt Schrader of Oregon; in her floor comments before yesterday’s vote, Beutler says that they’re trying to protect a Northwest treasure. HR 2083 would provide tribal and government fishery managers the ability and resources to make rapid and lethal responses to remove California and Stellar sea lions from specific areas on the Columbia River. Specifically, the bill amends the Marine Mammal Protection Act to authorize the Secretary of Commerce to provide management tools to the states and to local tribes to deal with sea lions, as long as they are not part of an ESA-listed species. A companion bill is also moving through the Senate, sponsored by Senators Maria Cantwell of Washington and Jim Risch of Idaho.
The Shoalwater Indians are getting more than two million dollars from FEMA, with that money earmarked for construction of a Tsunami Vertical Evacuation Tower. The money comes from FEMA’s Pre-Disaster Mitigation Grant program, providing resources to states, tribes and other local governments, where they are trying to implement a sustained pre-disaster mitigation program. The structure would be built next to tribal housing in the town of Tokeland, located at the northern entrance to Willapa Bay. The “safe refuge platform” would be built above the predicted tsunami wave crest height. Its 4,300 square-foot size would be able to handle nearly 400 people. They say that’s enough to handle all of the tribal members, along with other residents of the surrounding community. The Shoalwater Tribe has been looking for a new, tsunami-safe structure since the devastating Japanese earthquake and tsunami of 2011.
The City of Castle Rock is restricting the use of fireworks inside the city limits, starting next year. At Monday night’s meeting, the Castle Rock City Council voted unanimously to limit fireworks use to just two days during the year, on the 4th of July, and on New Year’s Eve. The new rules do not restrict sales of fireworks, nor do they affect this year’s legal days for setting off fireworks. Under the current rules, fireworks will go on sale June 28th, and will be available through July 5th. Lighting the fireworks is legal from noon to 11 pm on the 28th, from 9 am to 11 pm on June 29th through July 4th, and from 9 am to 9 pm on July 5th. Next year, it will be legal to set off fireworks from 9 am until midnight on the 4th of July, and from 6 pm to 1 am on New Year’s Eve. City officials say that a committee worked on the issue for about a year; they say that they were looking for a “middle ground,” responding to noise, debris and fire complaints, while also allowing people to celebrate the holiday. A public meeting is planned for Monday, July 2nd, where public input will be taken, before final action is taken on the new restrictions.