Whooping Cough Causes Concerns; Local Man Dies in Crash; Douglas County Fires spread; Pipe Bomb in Reedsport

Coast Radio News
Local News

29 July 2013

Tighter Visitor Restrictions At PeaceHealth

A sudden spike in the number of Whooping Cough cases this month in Lane County has health professionals concerned.  One of those is Dr. Paul Bouressa with Peace Health:

Dr. Paul Bouressa – “To date PeaceHealth providers have diagnosed 12 confirmed pertussis cases since July 1st.  All of these patients have been 16 and under.”

Bouressa, a pediatrician, says the highly contagious respiratory disease has prompted temporary changes in visitor guidelines at all PeaceHealth facilities in Lane County.  Anyone with cold or flu-like symptoms will be required to wear a mask; visits by children under the age of one are discouraged; and children under age 12 will not be allowed to visit the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit at RiverBend hospital in Springfield.

Dr. Paul Bouressa– “The revised guidelines are really intended to protect the public and the PeaceHealth caregivers and the medically at-risk populations, specifically the infants in the NICU.

Bouressa says the restrictions will be lifted once the number of Pertussis cases decrease.

Florence Man Dies in Crash

The results of an investigation into a fatal crash northeast of Florence early Friday morning are still being examined.  Oregon State Police say 23-year old Ronald Catalfamo of Florence died at the scene when his Toyota pickup left the roadway and came to rest in the upper North Fork of the Siuslaw River sometime in the early morning hours of Friday. Catalfamo’s passenger, 21-year old Nichole Wells, suffered minor injuries in the crash.

Explosive Device in Reedsport

Highway 101 through Reedsport was closed for more than four hours Saturday after a bicyclist discovered what appeared to be an explosive device.

According to Reedsport Police Sergeant Tom Beck, an officer responded just after ten AM Saturday and confirmed that it was indeed a “pipe” bomb, approximately five to six inches long, an inch in diameter and wrapped in tape with a fuse in one end.

Beck said it did not appear that the device had been placed deliberately and there were no direct threats recorded to any person or business in the vicinity.

Traffic was routed around the area between Tenth Street and Winchester Avenue until after two PM when the Oregon State Police Bomb Squad was able to respond and contain the device.

Nobody was injured.

Local Firefighters Helping Out

A three-firefighter crew along with a “quick-attack” pumper were dispatched from Siuslaw Valley Fire and Rescue as part of a Lincoln County Task Force that was assigned to work on protecting structures threatened by a series of wildland fires in southern Douglas County.

Siuslaw Valley Fire Chief John Buchanan said the crew was sent out yesterday morning to the Dads Creek Complex Fire.

Saturday evening several homes near the community of Glendale were evacuated as a precaution.  Several more homes in northern Josephine County were evacuated yesterday.

The Douglas County Complex of fires is divided into three branches… about two-dozen fires are burning in the Milo Unit east of Interstate Five.  The other two divisions are the Rabbit Mountain and Dad’s Creek blazes, both west of I-5.  Combined, they cover more than 15 square miles and threaten more than 300 homes.