19 September 2014
Peace Harbor Emergency Expansion Announced
A fund drive to help pay for a dramatic expansion of the emergency department is underway at Peace Harbor Medical Center. Foundation Director Michele Douglass said they’ve been quietly working for the past several months to gather pledges and donations.
Michele Douglass – “Our total goal is $5-million from the Florence community and surrounding areas, and we have reached $4-million; 80-percent.”
It wasn’t too long after the hospital opened in 1989 that it became apparent the Emergency Department was too small to comfortably handle the number of patients that came through each year.
Michele Douglass – “It always has been intended to serve 25-hundred patients comfortably. We’ve been growing every year and last year was over 88-hundred patients.”
Douglass says the new department will expand the footprint of the current one by nearly three times and will have more than enough capacity.
Michele Douglass – “At least 12-thousand a year, and it could go beyond that.”
Work is expected to begin in January.
Celebrating 25 years
Visitors to Peace Harbor Medical Center tomorrow will have an “all access” pass to many areas of the hospital during that facility’s 25th anniversary celebration.
A reception tent will be set up just outside the main entrance to the hospital Saturday from one until four pm. Visitors can learn not only about the past 25 years of service; but also what’s coming up next.
Marketing director Kat Rannow says there will be activities for all ages. In addition to tours of the hospital, there will be “doc-talks” about current medical trends and a free “teddy bear” clinic where youngsters can bring their dolls or teddy bears for a checkup.
Western Lane Ambulance shares the same anniversary… they’ll be offering tours of their quarters and ambulances at the same time.
Highway 38 crash leaves trailer suspended over Umpqua
A dramatic crash on the Scottsburg Bridge 16 miles east of Reedsport yesterday blocked traffic on Highway 38 for several hours and left a large semi-trailer dangling over the Umpqua River.
The truck, driven by 54-year old Brian Neeley of Sheridan, was eastbound approaching the bridge just before eight AM when it struck the guard rail and collided with the bridge railing. The lumber on the flat bed trailer spilled and the trailer itself was extended over the river.
Neeley suffered minor injuries in the crash.
Oregon State Police and Transportation officials closed the bridge to remove the truck and trailer, as well as evaluate the span’s condition. One-lane of traffic was allowed to resume seven hours after the crash and two-way traffic was reestablished about eight pm.
ODOT crews say drivers should expect intermittent lane closures and delays over the next few weeks while crews repair the damage.
Draft dunes environmental impact statement released
The final draft of an environmental impact statement covering changes in how off-road vehicles use the Oregon Dunes National Recreation Area has been released. U.S. Forest Service officials say the public can make comment on the statement through November third.
20-years ago, when the current process began, off-roaders could access any place on the dunes, unless it was specifically posted as being closed.
Five years ago, the process began honing in on designating and signing areas that were open, leaving the rest off-limits in order to protect vegetation.
Users complained, saying it restricted too many off-roaders into too small of a space; and that their activities could be used to help control invasive vegetation.
The current rule proposal would open up several additional miles of ‘user developed’ trails and hundreds of acres of sand.
Copies of the plan are available at the Oregon Dunes National Recreation Visitor Center in Reedsport, as well as online.