- Written by Sergeant Kent Sisson, CCSO
WHISPERING RIDGE -- The Chelan County Sheriff's Office, as a precautionary measure, has advised two property owners in the Whispering Ridge slide area to leave their homes. The recommendation is based on the most current readings from surface monitoring points at the slide area, which continue to show increasing movement in the slope. Both homes are on Squilchuck Road southwest of Wenatchee, WA.
A geotechnical firm retained by Chelan County has been analyzing data for more than a year from 30 points of reference along the slope. The points were predetermined last year. Late Friday afternoon the geotechnical firm advised Chelan County that the measuring point data is showing increased movement within the Whispering Ridge slide area. This increased rate of movement could potentially cause the “toe,” or base of the slide, to inadvertently affect the flow of a tributary creek located within an adjacent canyon to the slide. That creek flows into Squilchuck Creek which is very the near the two residences contacted in the 5000 block of Squilchuck Road.
This information triggered the notification of the two property owners Friday evening. Those residents and the three other property owners in the 4900 – 5000 blocks of Squilchuck Road had received a general notification of increased slope movement from Chelan County Emergency Management and Chelan County Public Works earlier Friday afternoon.
Surface monitoring point readings taken on March 30th (2017) show the landslide is moving again. The Whispering Ridge slope movement was first reported in March 2016. Initial notifications to property owners along the affected area of Whispering Ridge Drive and the five residences located below - on Squilchuck Road - occurred last spring.
The current monitoring point data indicates that movement has increased within the past couple of weeks. The geotechnical firm has stated that future readings will determine the rate at which the landslide is moving.
Monitoring points also show the roadway at Whispering Ridge Drive is moving at a much slower rate. The roadway remains open only to local traffic and is being monitored closely by Chelan County Public Works and the geotechnical firm to determine if restrictions are needed in the future.
- Written by Sheriff Harvey Gjesdal
On 04/14/17 Douglas County Deputies responded to two calls of gas thefts which occurred overnight.
One theft occurred at U-Haul located at 423 Rock Island Rd. The second occurred at the Liquor and Cannabis Control Board office located at 430 Rock Island Rd.
It is unknown how much gas was lost, but repairs for the damaged vehicles could be over $1,000. The Douglas County Sheriff’s Office is sharing information with the Wenatchee Police Department to determine if the thefts in the two jurisdictions might be related.
Anyone who sees suspicious activity is encouraged to call 9-1-1. Anyone with information is asked to call RiverCom dispatch on their non-emergency line: 663-9911.
- Written by Meagan Lott, WSDOT
HYAK – Construction-related delays return to Interstate 90 east of Snoqualmie Pass starting next week. Drivers need to plan for added travel time.
On Monday, April 17 through Friday, April 20 drivers will experience delays associated with intermittent rolling slowdowns during the day just east of the Snoqualmie Pass summit along Keechelus Lake. Drivers will also see delays in both directions due to single lane closures near Cle Elum.
The RV dumpsite located at the eastbound Indian John Rest Area will be closed to traffic on Monday, April 17 until Thursday, April 20 for maintenance repairs. The rest area will remain open.
Maintenance work along the shoulders on I-90 could cause minor delays for drivers during the day on Thursday, April 20 at the westbound I-90 off ramp at Exit 110, the eastbound I-90 off ramp at Exit 106 and the westbound and eastbound I-90 off ramp at Exit 101.
WSDOT provides a variety of tools to help plan your trip over Snoqualmie Pass:
- Sign up for email updates
- Receive text message alerts about closures and delays by texting the number 468311 with the words "WSDOT Snoqualmie"
- Snoqualmie Mountain Pass Web page for real-time travel information and to view traffic cameras.
- Check the weekly Construction Updates and Traffic pages for region-wide updates.
- Tune into the Highway Advisory Radio at 1610 AM and 530 AM.
- Follow us on Twitter @snoqualmiepass.
- Call the I-90 construction hotline at 888-535-0738 or 511.
- Download WSDOT’s free smartphone app to check statewide pass conditions.
- Written by Sheriff Harvey Gjesdal
On 04/11/17 at approximately 5:30 AM Douglas County Deputies responded to a burglary report at the Lone Pine Market located at 23041 Hwy. 97.
Unknown suspects had entered the store and stole a cash register containing $250 in cash. They also took a box which held $150 in nickels. In addition, the thieves entered an outbuilding and stole another cash register.
Anyone with information about this crime is asked to contact the Douglas County Sheriff’s Office.
- Written by Meagan Lott, WSDOT
Drivers need to plan for delays, slow down and pay attention through work zones
HYAK – It’s been a very long winter on Interstate 90 over Snoqualmie Pass, but now it’s time for drivers to switch gears from driving in winter conditions, to driving through construction work zones.
A number of road-improvement projects will cause delays for drivers this spring and summer while the Washington State Department of Transportation and contractor crews add lanes, build and repair bridges and fix cracked sections of pavement between North Bend and Ellensburg.
“This year there will be multiple projects along I-90, which means drivers need to be prepared for slow downs and plan for a longer trip,” said Todd Trepanier, WSDOT regional administrator. “Please stay attentive and be patient while driving between North Bend and Ellensburg.”
Next week crews will resume work on the I-90 Snoqulamie Pass East project that builds a wider, safer and more reliable stretch of I-90 from Hyak to Keechelus Dam and from Keechelus Dam to the Stampede Pass interchange. Later this summer, crews will resume blasting along the rock slopes east of Snoqualmie Pass. Drivers need to plan for hour-long closures, during the week starting an hour before sunset.
Crews will also resume work next week to replace deteriorating sections of the westbound lanes between Cle Elum and the Elk Heights area. As part of the work, the westbound Indian John Rest Area will need to be closed periodically during the week starting in late May and continuing throughout the summer.
In May, crews will start replacing deteriorating sections of concrete pavement panels in the eastbound lanes and repairing bridge decks in the westbound lanes between North Bend and the Snoqualmie Pass summit. Drivers will experience delays as traffic is detoured around the work zone. Crews will also be making repairs to bridge decks between Easton and Ellensburg.
WSDOT has a wide variety of resources to help drivers plan their trips across I-90 this summer. Drivers can find information on multiple websites, including the What’s Happening on I-90, Snoqualmie Mountain Pass and Traffic Alerts pages. Drivers can also follow us on Twitter @snoqualmiepass and @wsdot_east or sign up for email updates or subscribe to our text message alerts by sending the phrase “WSDOT Snoqualmie” to the number 468311.
- Written by FF/EMT Steve Saugen, CFR
Enjoy a free lunch and fun for the entire family
Chelan, WA. March 24, 2017 - On April 15, 2017, Chelan Fire & Rescue, in conjunction with Chelan’s celebration of Earth Day, will host a Safety Day at the Station 71/Headquarters, located at 232 E. Wapato Avenue in downtown Chelan. This family fun event will run from 10 AM – 4 PM. Community members are invited to come and enjoy touring the fire station, learn ways to stay safe, enjoy a free lunch that will begin at 12-noon.
With the community celebrating Earth Day firefighters want to do their part by hosting this event that is designed to help members of the community learn more about what they can do to keep their homes and family safe. Visitors will be able to see fire engines and equipment up close and visit directly with firefighters about the important and life saving work they do.
Information on Firewise (wildfire prevention), car seats, smoke alarms and more will be available. Special guests from Chelan Emergency Medical Services (EMS), Life Flight and Rivercom 9-1-1 will also be available to provide information about the invaluable work they do and the role they play in an emergency situation. The community will also have the opportunity to learn what they can do to help in an emergency and how to quickly access these services.
Everyone is encouraged to attend and bring the entire family.
- Written by Janice Stewart
How do you properly thank someone who has given their entire working life to an organization? Manson School District will be faced with answering this question in June as Mr. Tom Alexander will be retiring at the end of the school year after 38 years of teaching and coaching all with Manson School District.
Mr. “A”, as he is referred to, has taught over 50 different subjects to Manson students at almost every grade level in his years with the district including: PE, Health, Science, Social Studies, Math and Language Arts covering just about every subject that can be taught.
Not only has Tom taught these many subjects, but he has done so while serving as athletic director (20 years), coaching multiple sports such as baseball (24 years), football (18 years), girls and boys basketball (14 years) and cross county (3 years) at both the middle and high school level. Mr. A even refereed all the middle school home games for all sports for over ten years.
Tom has touched over 1,000 lives in his tenure with the Manson School District and left lasting impressions on many students and athletes. He has served as a mentor to dozens of educators and worked with countless parents and community members to provide that “extra” support a child might need. For many years Mr. A was the first to arrive at school and the last to lock up the gate after a late game or event.
Mason high school teacher Brad Soliday shared, “Tom’s loyalty and devotion to Manson’s school and community has been extraordinary. I can’t imagine that if you could add up the hours this man has spent working for students and athletes in Manson, over 38 years, anyone could rival his accumulated devotion. He has truly been a pillar of our school. I could not have asked for a better colleague or friend for the past 22 years. Thanks Tom.
As his longtime friend/co-worker and co-coach remarked… “Tom has been such a positive influence on hundreds or even thousands of students in the past 38 years. He has the ability to bring out the best in all students and athletes and the example he sets has helped shape the character of all the lives he touches. I have been lucky enough to share Tom’s journey at Manson High School for 37 years and he has also affected my life and my family in so many positive ways. I have been blessed to share many laughs and tears along the way. He is a brother to me and I am so thankful to be his friend. Joe Teague (Retired Manson Counselor/Coach)
Congratulations on your retirement Tom and best of luck on your next adventure!
- Written by Meagan Lott, WSDOT
Crews working to improve nighttime visibility
HYAK – Efforts to improve visibility on Interstate 90 east of Snoqualmie Pass continue this week as crews work to install solar-powered LED lane markers, which will require nighttime closures of the westbound lanes this week.
The Washington State Department of Transportation will close the westbound lanes of I-90 at 10 p.m. Wednesday night, April 5 until 5 a.m. Thursday morning, April 6 and again at 10 p.m. Thursday night, April 6 until 5 a.m. Friday morning, April 7. Westbound traffic will be stopped at milepost 62 near the Stampede Pass Interchange and will reopen every two hours to clear traffic. Eastbound traffic will not be impacted. Follow @SnoqualmiePass on Twitter and check the mountain passes web page for updates.
- Written by Barbara LaBoe, WSDOT
OLYMPIA – Two individuals were rescued from a downed aircraft in the Olympic National Park this evening near Mt Jupiter and have been airlifted for medical treatment.
The Cirrus SR22 aircraft went down in the snow covered wilderness and search and rescue officials were alerted at 3:48 p.m. Sunday, April 2, when the plane's Emergency Locator Transmitter activated.
The signal was detected by satellites and the distress message was forwarded to the Air Force Rescue Coordination Center at Tydall Air Force Base in Florida, who alerted the Washington State Department of Transportation. The occupants of the aircraft were also able to alert overflying commercial aircraft on the emergency frequency.
Search and Rescue personnel from Naval Air Station Whidbey Island Search and Rescue were able to locate the wreckage with the help of a search aircraft from Washington Air Search and Rescue, who tracked the distress beacon's signal. The Navy crew then lowered rescuers to the ground to locate, access and hoist the downed flyers up and onto the rescue helicopter and transport them to Harborview Medical Center in Seattle. Exact details about their injuries are not available at this time, but they were described as minor and not believed to be life threatening.
At this time we still do not have the names of the pilot and passenger or know what the purpose of the flight. The Federal Aviation Administration and National Transportation Safety Board are already mobilized and will begin their investigation to try and determine what caused the plane to go down.
- Written by Jessie Simmons, Executive Director, Historic Downtown Chelan Association
HDCA Announces April 15th Promotion
March 27, 2017, Chelan, Washington - The Historic Downtown Chelan Association (HDCA) will hold its annual Garage-A-Rama promotional event on April 15th, coinciding with Chelan’s annual Earth Day Fair. From 9:00am to 4:00pm participating merchants will move their top specials to tents on the corner of Woodin and Columbia. Shoppers can come downtown to take advantage of great deals before or after enjoying all the Earth Day Fair activities!
Garage-A-Rama is the public’s opportunity to scoop up new merchandise at garage sale prices! There’ll be something for everyone and something for every budget. Merchants will be offering a great mix of bargain-priced merchandise, including clothing, gifts, décor, kitchen items, electronics and more. Each merchant is slashing prices only for Garage-A-Rama. Bargain hunters won’t want to miss this event!
About HDCA: The Historic Downtown Chelan Association is dedicated to developing and promoting Chelan’s historic downtown core by creating an inviting and economically vibrant community center while emphasizing enhancement and preservation of the town’s historic features. For more information about HDCA, please visit www.historicchelan.org or phone the HDCA office at 509.682.4322.