Far North

A Total of Nine Candidates Qualify for Two Eureka Council Races

A total of nine candidates have qualified to run for two seats on the Eureka City Council, the city announced this afternoon. There isn’t an incumbent in either race, as sitting Ward 2 Councilmember Heidi Messner does not reside in the newly drawn district boundaries and Ward 4 Councilmember Austin Allison has opted not to seek another term. The city’s Second Ward race will see Lucinda Jackson, Kati Moulton, Tamar Shirley and Dot Jager-Wenworth square off for Messner’s seat. Ward 4, meanwhile, will see Scott Bauer, Eddie Morgan, Matthew Owen, William Tuttle and Liza Welsh vie for the seat being vacated by Allison. See the city’s full press release here.…

Exclusive: More Than 1,600 Californians Evicted During Pandemic

Like any parent, Jamie Burson didn’t want her 11-year-old son to discover how frightened she really was about the novel coronavirus. But it’s hard to mask anxiety when you’re living and sleeping together in the same car. After Burson was evicted from her two bedroom apartment in Vacaville the second week of April, she heeded Gov. Gavin Newsom’s order to shelter in place by cooping up in a two-door sedan near her Walmart job. With school campuses shuttered, her son propped his school-issued laptop on top of the glovebox and attended class in the same passenger seat he slept in. It helped that he could occasionally spend a night at a relative’s or friend’s house, although Burson hesitated to ask to sleep there herself, partly out of fear of spreading the virus to friends and family. “I was scared because of how many people were dying on a daily basis,” said Burson, who was evicted for a late February rent payment. “Made me feel like mankind was going to go extinct. I’ve never lived to see any type of disease take people out the way…

Hops on Hiatus

Sorry, Hops in Humboldt fans. This year you’ll have to sip your suds while you SIP. In a press release sent out Sunday, Hops organizers announced that the 2020 event will not be happening this year. “As much as the Hops in Humboldt committee would like to continue on our yearly tradition, we have come to the determination that Hops 2020 will be canceled,” the release states. No strolling around in the Fortuna sunshine with your buds imbibing IPAs and listening to music. All because 2020 told the world, “hold my beer.” And we’re not happy about that. The event is an important one. It’s not only a fun day for beer lovers, it’s also a community lifeline that gives proceeds back to schools, youth groups, senior services, drug and alcohol prevention and community projects through a multitude of grants. “To date over three quarters of a million dollars in grants have been awarded to schools, youth groups, senior services, drug and alcohol prevention and community projects. Several years ago we set up a scholarship fund through the Humboldt Area Foundation where we award three…

Red Salmon Complex to Create Smoky Conditions (with Video)

The Red Fire Complex — comprising the Red, Salmon and Jones Point fires — stand at 8,138 acres with 35 percent containment, according to this morning’s update. “Heavy low-level smoke continues to drain into valley bottoms near the fire area and along the Bigfoot Highway affecting Orleans, Weitchpec, Hoopa and other communities in this region,” the update states. “These areas are expected to see periods of ‘Unhealthy’ air quality with improving conditions late in the day.” Watch the video below to find out more about unmanned aircraft operations used at the complex to help provide fire managers intel on the blazes as they work toward full suppression.  [pdf-2] Read the full update below: Current Situation: The Red Salmon Complex is 8,138 acres and 35% contained. The Jones Point Fire will be transitioning back to the Hoopa Valley Tribe at 6:00 pm tonight. The Red and Salmon fires are burning in the Trinity Alps Wilderness on the Six Rivers and Shasta-Trinity National Forests. All three fires are being managed for full suppression. Firing operations will pick up today around both the Red and Salmon fires, this…

UPDATING: McKinleyville Standoff Ends After 2 Hours

UPDATE : One person was detained after a two-hour standoff at a Thiel Avenue home in McKinleyville following reports of repeated shots being fired toward a neighboring backyard, the Humboldt County Sheriff’s Office reports. At least one bullet reportedly entered the neighbor’s residence. According to a news release, Ryan Gordon Shaw, 39, surrendered after negotiations. No one was injured during the incident. Read the full HCSO release at the bottom of this report. PREVIOUS: Humboldt County Sheriff’s Office deputies are setting up a perimeter after receiving reports of multiple shots fired from a residence on Thiel Avenue in McKinleyville. They have requested that Hiller Road be closed at Columbus Avenue and at McKinleyville Avenue. Soon after arriving at scene at 6:49 p.m., deputies are reporting seeing someone shooting out of the residence. Local residents are asked to stay inside or avoid the area. UPDATE 6:54 p.m.: Negotiators responding to the scene, according to the scanner. UPDATE 6:57 p.m.: “Shots fired. Shots Fired!” reported an officer over the scanner. Neighbors are reporting they have received an alert and are being asked to stay inside. UPDATE 7:05…

Seven New COVID-19 Cases Since Friday

Public Health reported seven confirmed COVID-19 cases today, bringing Humboldt County’s total to date to 286 after three previously recorded results from an outside lab were later found to be false positives and removed from the region’s count. “We are committed to reporting data accurately and want our community to have confidence that case counts are accurate and that if an error occurs anywhere in the process, it will be corrected,” County Health Officer Teresa Frankovich said in a news release. A rapid rise in cases this month prompted public health to raise the “Effectiveness of Disease Control” to level three on the county’s Alert Level Assessment Tool but the county’s overall COVID alert level — which runs on a scale of 1 to 4 — remains at 3. Level 3 is described as: “High risk — many cases with conditions for community spread, with many undetected cases likely. Limit everyday activities to increase safety.” Humboldt County has seen 53 new confirmed infections in the first 10 days of August, on the way to eclipsing July’s record high of 100. To date, the county has seen…

Fortuna Nursing Home Staffer Tests Positive for COVID, State Reports

A staff member at a Fortuna nursing home tested positive for COVID-19, according to the California Department of Public Health. According to Peggy Johnson, who responded to a phone inquiry at Fortuna Rehabilitation and Wellness Center, said the staff member does not work with patients. Further inquiries were referred to Brett Cook, vice president at Rockport Healthcare Services, who did not immediately respond to calls. The California Department of Public Health requires nursing homes in the state to make daily reports on the number of patients and staff who have tested positive for COVID-19. The information provided is available on the CDPH website. Rockport Healthcare manages the four local operations of Brius Healthcare, LLC, including Fortuna Rehabilitation and Wellness Center, where the staff member works. …

County Asks State for Clarifications About Youth Sports

The county of Humboldt is asking the state’s Department of Public Health and Gov. Gavin Newsom’s office for clarification about recently released guidance on youth sports amid the COVID-19 pandemic. According to a news release, key questions were left unanswered and the county’s COVID-19 joint information center has requested more information on “requirements for cohort size, adult supervision and shared food and drink dispensers in addition to requesting clarification on scrimmages.” “The state describes general risk factors and provides an outline for sports activities, but unlike other industry sectors, Youth Sports lacks specifics that would allow us to set up a process under which people can apply to organize these sorts of activities,” County Health Officer Teresa Frankovich said in the release, noting that keeping children safe whether at school or on the playing field is the No. 1 priority. Read the JIC release below: The Office of the California Governor and California Department of Public Health (CDPH) recently released guidance on youth sports, but left key questions unanswered. The Humboldt County Joint Information Center (JIC) is working with the state to clarify requirements. The…

UPDATE: Van Fire Spreading on 101 Near Miranda

A full-sized van engulfed in flames which are starting to spread into the surrounding vegetation is impacting traffic on Hwy 101 north of Miranda, according to a report over the scanner. The vehicle is partly blocking the outside northbound lane. CHP reports that the northbound lanes are being closed and traffic is being diverted at the Miranda exit through to the Salmon Creek onramp. UPDATE 2:24 p.m.: Both Copter 102 and Tanker 100 which were assigned to the fire have been releases without dropping water or retardant. UPDATE 2:32 p.m.: One northbound lane has reopened and traffic is slowly moving through the area. Please remember that information gathered from initial reports is subject to revision as more facts become available. …

Wildfire Smoke to Hit ‘Unhealthy’ Levels in Some Areas

The Red Salmon Complex — which now includes the Jones Point Fire near Hoopa — stands at 7,031 acres with 30 percent containment, according to this morning’s update. Of most concern is the larger Red Fire — at 6,146 acres and 14 percent containment — as adverse weather conditions move into the region this week. “A red flag warning has been issued over the fire area for increased temperatures, low relative humidity and unstable air,” the update states. “The combination of factors could lead to increased fire behavior and a more noticeable smoke column than has been seen in recent days.” The Salmon Fire — burning in the Shasta Trinity National Forest — is 759 acres and 70 percent contained while firefighters are expected to be mopping up the 126-acre Jones Point Fire, which has a containment line around it. According to the North Coast Air Quality Management District, Orleans and Hoopa are expected to have “Unhealthy” conditions today due to the smoke with periods of “Very Unhealthy” conditions possible for the Orleans area. The air quality forecast: • Humboldt County – Coastal areas are…

UPDATE: Red Fire Growing, Salmon Fire 29 Percent Contained

Fire activity increased yesterday afternoon with the Red fire growing to 5,218 acres and 5 percent contained, reads an update from the U.S. Dept. of Agriculture. “Fire activity increased yesterday afternoon crossing Red Cap Creek on the west flank. The fire is 5,218 acres and 5% contained. Yesterday, crews made significant progress along the fire’s northern edge through strategic firing operations putting fire on the ground from just east of Black Mountain heading west along Lubbs Trail and Forest Road 10N01 to the Salmon Summit Trailhead,” the update reads. The Salmon fire is  759 acres and 29 percent contained. The update also states a red flag warning has been issued over the fire area today and tomorrow for increased temperatures and low relative humidity. “The atmosphere is unstable enough today where intense heat could break the weak mid-level inversion and produce a convection column,” the update reads. Read the full release below. [pdf-1]…

Red Corvette Crashed on 101 by Fernbridge

At approximately 2:10 p.m., a passerby reported that a red Corvette had struck the embankment of northbound Hwy 101 near the Ferndale offramp. “The occupant appears injured,” the dispatcher said as he relayed information from the reporting person. Please remember that information gathered from initial reports is subject to revision as more facts become available. UPDATE 3:08 p.m.: The roadway is clear.…

UPDATE: Jones Point Fire Near Hoopa Around 130 Acres

UPDATE: Last night, fires broke out along Tish Tang Road near Hoopa. The flames quickly grew and by last night the Jones Point Fire (as the separate spots were collectively known) was reported to be about 100 acres with 0 percent containment. This morning, the Northern California Geographic Coordination Center reports that the fire has grown to 130 acres. The fire is burning up slope in brush and timber in rugged terrain and is 5 percent contained, according to the Coordination Center. “Crews made good progress on the North flank of the fire last night,” the Center reports. “Cultural resources and high value timberland are threatened.” PREVIOUS: Several residents of the Hoopa area are sharing photos and videos on social media of multiple fire starts on the east side of the Trinity River in the Tish Tang Road area. The first reports came in about 6:30 p.m. Victoria Rousseau, a resident of the area, said, “I’m sitting in my back yard watering and you can tell by the timing they all started. Someone lit them as they went down the hill.” The CHP Traffic Incident…

UPDATE: Salmon Fire 29 Percent Contained, 751 Acres

The Salmon fire is at 751 acres and 12 percent contained reads an update from the U.S. Dept. of Agriculture. “This fire is 751 acres and 12% contained. The fire is holding along lines in the Eightmile Creek drainage and Backbone Ridge. Crews worked to bolster lines along Salmon Summit Ridge and the fire is staying within the footprint of previous fires,” reads the update. Dryer weather conditions and high winds this weekend could increase fire behavior reads the update. The Red fire is at 3,866 acres and 0% contained. “Crews are making significant progress along with the fire’s northern edge through strategic firing operations,” the update states. Read the full release below.  [pdf-1]…

Fortuna School District, Teacher Union Talks to Continue Sunday as Monday Opening Looms, T-S Reports

The Times-Standard is reporting that Fortuna Union High School Teachers Association and the Fortuna Union High School District Board of Trustees will return to negotiations in hopes of seeking an agreement of the union’s still-to-be met demands: A three-week postponement of the school year and a move to virtual instruction, the report states. Read the full story here. …

Arcata Fire Rescues Man After ‘Top of the World’ Fall

Last night, a 26-year-old McKinleyville man fell 70 feet from the popular hiking spot, Top of the World, which is located off of Fickle Hill Road. Arcata Fire was called out about 11:20 p.m. Friday and they worked several hours to safely pack the man out of the area. According to scanner reports, friends who were with the man called 911 and one met emergency personnel on the road in their vehicle with their lights flashing. Arcata Fire’s Battalion 8201 was able to make access down the very steep trail and requested a helicopter medical rescue but, because of weather, the helicopters did not attempt the rescue. Arcata Fire reported on their Facebook page this morning, “It took all four on duty firefighters over three hours to complete the rescue.” They further reported, “The man was transported to the hospital by Arcata Ambulance with moderate injuries. AFD thanks Samoa and Fieldbrook Fire for covering calls in Arcata Fire District while this rescue was being mitigated.” …

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