Klamath Basin News, Monday, Dec. 27 – Snow Storms Hit The Basin Causing Icy Roads; How to Dispose of your Christmas Trees and help “Friends of the Children”

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Monday, December 27, 2021

Klamath Basin Weather

Today Snow flurries at times today, with a high near 25. West wind 11 mph, with gusts as high as 26 mph. Overnight a 20% chance of snow after 10pm. Mostly cloudy, with a low around 12.

Tuesday A 50% chance of snow. Cloudy, with a high near 27. South southeast wind 3 to 7 mph. New snow accumulation of less than a half inch possible. Overnight another 50% chance of some flurries, with a low around 17 degrees. New snow accumulation of less than a half inch possible.
Wednesday A 40% chance of snow, mainly before 10am. Mostly cloudy, with a high near 33. New snow accumulation of less than a half inch possible. Overnight cloudy with a low around 12.
Thursday A 20%chance of snow after 10am. Mostly cloudy, with a high near 33.
Friday A slight chance of snow before 10am. Partly sunny, with a high near 32. Overnight low of 7.
Saturday, New Year’s Day Mostly sunny, with a high near 29.

See Road Camera Views

Hiway 97 at GreenSprings Dr. (Bi-pass)
Lake of the Woods   
Doak Mtn.   
Hiway 97 at Chemult   
Hiway 140 at  Bly
Hiway 97 at LaPine

Today’s Headlines

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The Pacific Northwest was hit with a major winter storm with snow falling along the coast, and frigid temperatures are expected through the first part of this week.

As of early Sunday afternoon, 5.8 inches of snow was officially recorded at the Klamath Falls airport, with several more inches in outlying areas, and more on the way. 

Temperatures are expected to plummet into the single digits early this week. Medford saw snow, with Eugene receiving several inches and Roseburg had nearly six inches of the white stuff.  Coos Bay Florence, Newport, and Astoria also received measurable amounts of snow, a rarity anytime of the year.

The Pacific Northwest will now see temperatures plunge. Arctic air dominates the first part of the week, giving us the coldest temperatures we’ve seen in almost 30 years in western Oregon,  Eastern Oregon temps will also continue to plunge, but likely won’t match the below zero temperatures from a few years ago.

Klamath Basin residents are invited to bring undecorated Christmas trees to the Klamath County Fairgrounds parking lot on Saturday, January 8, from 8 a.m. to noon, to be chipped by Absolute Tree Care Service in exchange for any donation to Friends of the Children — Klamath Basin.

Friends of the Children is a national nonprofit that creates generational change by empowering youth facing the greatest obstacles through relationships with professional mentors, called “Friends,” for 12+ years. Friends of the Children originated in Portland in 1993 and established in Klamath Falls in 2000.

With his contribution earlier this month, Doug Brown of Klamath Freedom Celebration upped the total amount he has raised for the Sky Lakes Cancer Treatment Center to $46,100.

Brown, joined by representatives of principal sponsors, recently presented Sky Lakes Cancer Treatment Center Director Susan Morton, RN, a check for $15,000 to help local patients going through cancer treatment.

Doug and Chris Brown started the Klamath Freedom Celebration in 2010 with the vision to celebrate veterans, active-duty military, and first responders. Doug began raising money with Chris’s Causes for cancer treatment and care in 2016 after Chris Brown died in March 2016. The Klamath Freedom Celebration’s fundraisers include a variety of community events throughout the year including Fourth of July and Veteran’s Day parades, and Chris Brown Memorial Ride-Walk-Run events, and via their website for Chris’s Causes.

Doug Brown donates the money collected to the Sky Lakes Cancer Treatment Center. Chris was a Sky Lakes patient for her own cancer treatment in 2015 and 2016. 

Just two days before the Christmas holiday, Klamath County Police received a report that several packages had been stolen off the porch of 1815 Majestic Street.

But thanks to surveillance footage from the impacted property, police were able to quickly arrest the suspect, Crystal Hamilton, and retrieve the packages just before Christmas Day.

On December 24, 2021, Christmas Eve, a search warrant was obtained for Crystal Hamilton’s vehicle and residence located at 121 Trinity Street. When police searched the property, they discovered the stolen packages from 1815 Majestic Street and also several other stolen items that Ms. Hamilton admitted she had stolen from other locations in Klamath Falls.

This incident remains under investigation while officers attempt to locate the additional victims. If you have information regarding this case, please contact The Klamath Falls Police Department at 541-883-5336. Anonymous information can be left at the Klamath Falls Police Tip Line number 541-883-5334.

Ms. Hamilton has been charged with Mail Theft, Theft I, and possession of forged instrument.

An 18 year old Klamath Falls man is being lodged on several thousand dollars bail on multiple charges following his arrest on Hope Street Christmas Eve.

Kaden Wilson is booked on multiple charges, including menacing, second degree assault, fourth degree assault, escape, resisting arrest, and attempting to commit a crime. No further information was immediately available regarding his arrest by law enforcement.

Boy Scout Troop 71 in Klamath Falls will offer their 18th annual Christmas tree pickup on Sunday, Jan. 2.

The scouts raise funds for summer camp and other scout activities. They ask for a minimum $7 donation to accept and dispose of a used tree. Those trees are then recycled for biofuel and feed for goats. To arrange a pick up, contact 541 850 9217.

Around the state of Oregon

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The winter storm plaguing Southern Oregon and the rest of the state is now making an impact of people’s utilities.

Around 1:30 p.m. on Sunday, Pacific Power reported that more than 6,500 customers were without power. A large majority of those power outages are happening in Douglas County near Roseburg.

But further south in Josephine County, roughly a thousand customers are without power due to the winter storm. The latest report is that electrical wires are down near the 8000 block of Caves Highway in Cave Junction where the majority of customers are being impacted.

Pacific Power says other outages can happen with the high winds and unpredictability left with the remaining remnants of the storm, and customers region wide should be aware.

The Rogue Valley International Airport has been dealing with canceled and delayed flights over the holiday weekend.

It’s largely because of omicron related covid callouts from airline employees and the inclement weather hitting much of the West Coast. The Rogue Valley International’s website indicates that at least 5 flights have been canceled on Sunday and many more have been delayed.

Across the country, airlines canceled hundreds more flights today because of staffing shortages tied to COVID-19 as the nation’s travel woes extended beyond Christmas. There was no clear indication when normal schedules would resume.

More than 700 flights entering, leaving or flying within the U.S. were called off. That’s according to the flight-tracking website FlightAware. That figure was down from nearly 1,000 on Saturday. More than 50 flights were already canceled for Monday. Delta, United and JetBlue have blamed the omicron variant of the coronavirus for causing illness among many employees.

Expect Winter Driving Conditions in Southern Oregon 

Travelers in southwest Oregon should expect snowy roads and winter conditions today as winter weather continues to affect the region. Plan ahead, take extra time, and expect delays throughout the day.

Roads in high elevation areas may be covered in packed snow and ice. OR 62, 138 and 230 are especially treacherous. Travel on these roads or other high cascades areas is not advised; use alternate routes. Sno-Parks in the Crater Lake and Diamond Lake area are still inaccessible.

Chains are still required through several high elevation areas. Chain requirements can change throughout the day, depending on conditions. Check Tripcheck.com for the latest information, and make sure you chain up in designated areas on road shoulders only. 

Turbulent weather stretched from San Diego to Seattle, where several of inches of snow fell on Sunday.

In northern California, the storm caused whiteout conditions and closed key highways amid blowing snow in mountains of Northern California and Nevada, with forecasters warning that travel in the Sierra Nevada could be difficult for several days. 

Travelers trying to return to Oregon via US395 were snowbound Sunday afternoon, as the highway was shut down a few miles outside of Reno. Authorities near Reno said three people were injured in a 20-car pileup on Interstate 395, where drivers described limited visibility on Sunday.

Further west, a 70-mile (112-kilometer) stretch of Interstate 80 was shut until at least Monday from Colfax, California, through the Lake Tahoe region to the Nevada state line. The California Department of Transportation also closed many other roads while warning of slippery conditions for motorists. 

The Donner Pass was said to have avalanche conditions and was not going to be open for a minimum of 24 hours.

Oregon is officially in a state of emergency for severe winter. Governor Kate Brown declared a state of emergency Friday because, severe weather is expected to bring heavy snow and sustained temperatures below freezing, resulting in critical transportation failures and disruptions to power and communications infrastructure.

Brown issued the declaration Thursday night to start immediately, and last through January 3 due to projected severe winter weather across the state. Brown cited “potential threat to life, safety, property, and significant damage to infrastructure exists due to severe winter weather across Oregon.

The National Weather Service has issued multiple winter storm watches, warnings, and winter weather advisories throughout our state.” The Governor’s declaration authorizes the Oregon Office of Emergency Management (OEM) to activate state resources, and to utilize personnel, equipment, and facilities from other state agencies in order to respond to or mitigate the effects of the weather emergency.

In addition, the Oregon National Guard, Oregon State Police, Oregon Department of Transportation, Oregon Department of Human Services, and the Oregon Public Utility Commission and other state agencies are directed to provide any assistance as requested by OEM that is deemed necessary to assist in the response.

Oregon reports 1,350 new confirmed and presumptive COVID-19 cases, 8 new deaths

There are eight new COVID-19 related deaths in Oregon, raising the state’s death toll to 5,598. The Oregon Health Authority (OHA) reported 1,350 new confirmed and presumptive cases of COVID-19 bringing the state total to 410,565.

The new confirmed and presumptive COVID-19 cases reported today are in the following counties: Baker (3), Benton (24), Clackamas (114), Clatsop (9), Columbia (19), Coos (17), Crook (5), Curry (3), Deschutes (106), Douglas (27), Gilliam (1), Harney (1), Hood River (6), Jackson (104), Jefferson (5), Josephine (35), Klamath (10), Lake (1), Lane (76), Lincoln (2), Linn (43), Malheur (7), Marion (109), Morrow (7), Multnomah (345), Polk (28), Sherman (1), Tillamook (6), Umatilla (25), Union (7), Wallowa (3), Wasco (3), Washington (164) and Yamhill (34).

OHA — By getting vaccinated and a booster as soon as we’re eligible, wearing a mask and keeping indoor gatherings small, we can blunt #Omicron’s surge and keep thousands of Oregonians from going into the hospital.We’ve recently added new high-volume vaccination sites across the state offering all three COVID-19 vaccines, boosters and pediatric doses. These sites are free and no appointment is necessary. To learn more and to find a site near you, visit our blog: https://covidblog.oregon.gov/looking-for-a-covid-19…/You can also visit getvaccinated.oregon.gov to find a COVID-19 vaccine near you, or contact your health care provider.

A COVID-19 booster greatly reduces the chance of being infected. A COVID-19 booster will prevent most people from becoming very sick or having to go to the hospital, even if they get infected. If you get COVID-19, you can still spread the virus. However, because boosters reduce the chances of becoming infected in the first place, you'll be less likely to spread the virus.

Trail Teenager Found Dead of Gunshot Wound

The Jackson County Sheriff’s Office (JCSO) has reported a 17-year-old male is deceased due to an apparent gunshot wound.

On Sunday evening, JCSO deputies responded to a report of shots fired on the 600 block of Netherlands Road in Trail.

Major Assault and Death Investigation Unit (MADIU) has been called out to investigate. JCSO is the lead. The investigation is ongoing and will be updated when new information becomes available.

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Recreational Vehicle Fire – 1700 Block of SE Mill Street in Roseburg

At 11:07 a.m. on December 26, 2021, Roseburg Fire Department personnel responded to a reported recreational vehicle on fire in the 1700 block of SE Mill Street.  The reporting party notified Douglas County Dispatch that a motorhome was on fire across from 1729 SE Mill Street. 

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