Remnants of Weekend Storm
This weekend’s winter storm had lasting effects for the area. Ice and wind caused many power outages and closed roads out of Florence. Highway 126 experienced dozens of downed trees from Mapleton to Veneta and as of this morning the road is still closed in both directions with crews working diligently to get the path to Eugene open. It is not the only road to be closed due to storm damage. Highway 38 to Triangle Lake is also closed due to a landslide that covered the roadway. ODOT say you can still get to Eugene from the south, but problems on Interstate 5 in Cottage Grove are making the commute long and potentially dangerous. There have been multiple reports of spinouts and crashes along the I-5 corridor. The National Weather Service is concerned that the potential for another winter storm along the coastal mountain range will bring more dangerous ice and downed trees and power lines. A storm warning is in effect for tomorrow during the day and into the evening east of Florence. While there are not a lot of widespread outages here in Florence, just north in Lincoln County Central Lincoln PUD is reporting more than 7500 outages.
Grid Failure Leaves Florence/Reedsport in the Dark
Central Lincoln PUD says it was a transmission failure on the part of the Bonneville Power Administration that provides power to Central Lincoln PUD that left Florence and Reedsport in total darkness early Sunday morning. Power went out in the region at about 1:40 am Sunday morning and was out for almost an hour. Assistant City Manager Megan Messmer said the outage did not cause any major interruptions, but had it lasted longer it could have affected operations at the water treatment plant. She said it was lucky that it had happened in the middle of the night when services were not in high demand.
Boil Water Notice Rescinded
Over the weekend the Mapleton water district received their test results from the water samples that were sent out and they have removed the boil water notice for residents and businesses. Last week a leak had caused the holding tanks in Mapleton to drain and cause low water pressure and in some cases no water at all repairs were made to the damaged area and the tank began to refill but it took several days to refill.
Plover Habitat Expanding
The snowy plover habitat is getting a makeover according to the US Forest Service. The area along the Siltcoos river to the Oregon Dunes recreational area will open up about 50 acres of habitat for the birds. Crews are removing non-native vegetation to accommodate more breeding and nesting space according to Oregon Dunes National Recreation Area Wildlife Biologist Cindy Burns. She says over the last 25 years they have established small pockets of habitat but the birds have outgrown them. While there is the presence of heavy equipment in the area the recreation areas remain open to the public.