The following warning was received by KMUD News in a press release from the California Regional Water Quality Control Board, North Coast Region, dated Sept. 17, 2013.
Due to its potential health risks, federal, state, county and tribal agencies are urging swimmers, boaters and recreational users to avoid direct contact with or use of waters containing blue-green algae (cyanobacteria), now blooming in reaches of the Klamath River in Northern California.
Reaches of the Klamath River including the Copco and Iron Gate Reservoirs, and below to the confluence with Tully Creek are now posted with health advisories warning against human and animal contact with the water. People can still enjoy camping, hiking, biking, canoeing, picnicking, or other recreational activities while visiting the reservoirs and the Klamath River, with proper precautions to avoid direct contact with algal bloom waters.
Recent monitoring found cyanobacteria (Microcystis aeruginosa) cell counts that exceeded public health advisory thresholds in Klamath River waters at locations in Copco and Iron Gate Reservoirs and downstream through Weitchpec on the Yurok Reservation.
Iron Gate and Copco Reservoirs were posted with health advisories in June and these advisories remain in effect. Residents and recreational water users of the Klamath River from Copco Reservoir to Tully Creek are urged to use caution and avoid getting in the water near these bloom areas.
“These conditions are concerning as blue-green algae can pose health risks, particularly to children and pets. These conditions underscore the importance of implementing the Klamath Basin water quality restoration strategy,” said Matt St. John, executive officer of the North Coast Regional Water Quality Control Board.
“We urge people to choose safe activities when visiting the affected reaches of the Klamath River and recommend that people and their pets avoid contact with water in locations with blooms, and particularly avoid swallowing or inhaling water spray in an algal bloom area." St. John said.
The algal blooms appear as bright green in the water, and blue-green, white or brown foam, scum or mats can float on the water and accumulate along the shore. Recreational exposure to toxic blue-green algae can cause eye irritation, allergic skin rash, mouth ulcers, vomiting, diarrhea, and cold and flu-like symptoms. Liver failure, nerve damage and death have occurred in rare situations where large amounts of contaminated water were directly ingested.
The Statewide Guidance on Harmful Algal Blooms recommends the following for blue-green algae impacted waters:
· Take care that pets and livestock do not drink the water, swim through heavy algae, scums or mats, or lick their fur after going in the water. Rinse pets in clean drinking water to remove algae from fur.
· Avoid wading, swimming or jet or water skiing in water containing algae blooms or scums or mats.
· Do not drink, cook or wash dishes with untreated surface water from these areas under any circumstances; common water purification techniques (e.g., camping filters, tablets and boiling) do not remove toxins.
· People should not eat mussels or other bivalves collected from these areas. Limit or avoid eating fish; if fish are consumed, remove guts and liver, and rinse filets in clean drinking water.
· Get medical treatment immediately if you think that you, your pet, or livestock might have been poisoned by blue-green algae toxins. Be sure to alert the medical professional to the possible contact with blue-green algae.
Water users are encouraged to check most recent sampling results on the Klamath Blue-Green Algae Tracker (see link below). Even when blue-green algae blooms are not present, still carefully watch young children and warn them not to swallow the water.
For more information, please visit:
California Department of Public Health:
State Water Resources Control Board
CA Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment:
Klamath Blue-Green Algae Tracker
US Environmental Protection Agency
Siskiyou County Public Health Department:
Water quality monitoring for the Klamath River is conducted collaboratively by the United States Bureau of Reclamation, PacifiCorp, the Karuk Tribe, the Yurok Tribe, the North Coast Regional Water Quality Control Board and United States Environmental Protection Agency from Link River Dam in Oregon to the estuary in California. The health advisory postings are supported by the North Coast Regional Water Quality Control Board, the Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment (OEHHA), the California Department of Public Health, as well as the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, and the Yurok and Karuk Tribes.
Businesses and residences in the waterfront area of Eureka were evacuated Tues., Sept. 17 as the Humboldt County Bomb Squad and Eureka Police worked to remove "projectiles" that were uncovered at a construction site and identified as Navy artillery shells, according to a Eureka Police Department press release.
The artillery shells were safely transported to Samoa Beach and destroyed. At this time it is unknown how the shells came to be at the construction site. The full Eureka Police Department press release appears below.
EPD Press Release, dated Sept., 17, 2013:
On 9/17/13, at about 8:00 AM, Eureka Police Department officers were dispatched to a construction site along the waterfront between H and I Streets after construction workers reported uncovering two World War II era artillery shells. The shells were located in separate dirt piles within the construction site.
After confirming the presence of possible undetonated artillery shells, officers established a wide perimeter around the construction site and evacuated neighboring businesses and residences as a precautionary measure. Assistance from the Humboldt County Sheriff’s Office Bomb Squad was also requested.
The Bomb Squad subsequently removed the projectiles and transported them in a “single vent explosives transportation trailer” to the Samoa beach where they were destroyed. EPD provided a police escort for the explosives trailer’s transportation to the beach. The evacuations were lifted at approximately 11:45 AM.
The first projectile was determined to be empty and inert. The second projectile was filled with an undermined substance and it is unknown whether or not that projectile was “live.” The Bomb Squad identified the projectiles as being Navy artillery.
The origin of the artillery shells and how they came to be buried at the construction site is unknown at this time.
Update: Sept. 11, 2013--Congressional Rep. Jared Huffman gives reaction to Obama address on Syria (audio)
On Tues., Sept. 10, 2013, President Obama addressed the current situation in Syria in a nationally televised prime-time address from the East Room of the White House. The audio portion of this appeal to the American public was broadcast on KMUD. After the speech KMUD News Anchor, Eillen Russell, interviewed U.S. Congressional Representative Jared Huffman to get his reaction to President Obama's address. Use the player below to hear the interview.
As the tensions and threats between the U.S. and the Assad government in Syria build antiwar demonstrations have erupted in the U.S., from Times Square in New York City to the Courthouse in Eureka, California. The precipitating event, leading to the proposal by the Obama Administration to conduct strategic bombing within Syria, was the suspected use of chemical agents, on August 22, by the Syrian government in a suburb of Damascus. The agent, thought to be nerve gas, was said to have killed hundreds of people, according to an article in the Sept. 9, edition of Time Magazine.
As a national discussion evolves, weighing the pros and cons and moral issues involved in U.S. intervention in Syria, those opposing escalating American intervention rallied locally at locations in Humboldt and Mendocino Counties. On Thurs., Sept. 5, a group of 40 to 50 people demonstrated outside the County Courthouse in Eureka urging non-intervention in Syria. Meanwhile, U.S. naval ships, armed with scores of Tomahawk cruise missiles, are positioned in the Mediterrenean Sea.
Use the player below to hear more on this story, including an interview with Jim Paquin, a Vietnam veteran present at the Eureka demonstration. Also included, is information about the position on the matter taken by U.S. Congressional Representative Jared Huffman. Huffman signed a letter that urged President Obama to wait for the United Nations to investigate the chemical agent allegations and to wait until an act of Congress before using military force. This piece was submitted and aired by KMUD News Correspondent, Christina Aanestad, on the KMUD Local News Thurs., Sept. 5, 2013.
- Time Magazine article - "Across The Red Line"
- Press TV article
- Huffington Post article on Syrian Resolution Vote
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Federal Judge Lawrence O'Neill lifted his temporary restraining order on the release of Trinity River water this Thursday (Aug., 22, 2013), thus deciding against a preliminary injunction which would have halted any release until a pending lawsuit over the issue is settled. As a result of Judge O'Neill's decision, this Sun, Aug 25, the flow from Lewiston Dam to the Trinity River will begin to increase. The Trinity River is the main tributory of the Klamath River. See the map below for the location of Lewiston Dam.
Judge O'Neill got involved after the Federal Bureau of Reclamation had authorized the flows to begin on Aug. 13, to protect the fish. Subsequently, the Westlands Water District and the San Luis & Delta-Mendota Water Authority sued the bureau claiming the releases would decrease already low water allocations available to farmers. In his decision Judge O'Neill found that blocking the flows would do greater harm to the tribes and the fisheries, if an injunction was granted, than it would to the water districts.
The day before Judge O'Neill's decision to release the water, a group of Hoopa Valley Tribal members demonstrated in Fresno at the location where the hearing on the matter was to be held - the aim being to convey the impacts that a large-scale fish kill would have on the people of the Klamath and Trinity Rivers.
Hear more details on this story in a piece submitted by Kelly Lincoln and aired on the KMUD Local News on Friday, Aug. 23, 2013.
Use the player below to hear more about the demonstration of Hoopa Tribal members in Fresno. This story was submitted and aired by Eileen Russell on the KMUD Local News, Tue., Aug. 20, 2013.
Hoopa Tribal Members rally in support of increased flows in the Trinity River
The Map below shows the location of Lewiston Dam.
Salvatore Ted Arena, age 42, of Freshwater is being sought for suspected abandonment of three dogs, Angel, Becky and Ginger, that had belonged to his brother who passed away this February. According to a press release from the Humboldt County Sheriff's Office, Arena is believed to have left the area headed for the east coast, and they will be seeking warrant for his arrest. The original and updated press releases appear below.
HCSO Press Release, dated Aug. 22, 2013:
On 08/21/13 an Officer from the California Highway Patrol brought three dogs into the Humboldt County Sheriff’s Office Animal Shelter that were found running in the roadway on New Navy Base Road at Lincoln Avenue in Fairhaven. The dogs are a black Labrador retriever mix, approximately 12 years old, a brown German shepherd mix, approximately 10 years old, and a brown Airedale Terrier mix, approximately 10 years old. All three dogs are female.
On 08/21/13 Animal Shelter staff located a posting on Craigslist from 08/08/13 from an unidentified person in Freshwater who stated that their neighbor is/was moving to the East Coast and had three dogs that he could not keep. There were photos of the dogs on the Craigslist posting and they are the same dogs as those brought into the shelter. The back yard of a residence is clearly visible in one of the photographs.
On 08/22/13 Animal Shelter staff located a second posting on Craigslist about the dogs. This posting is from someone who saw a male subject abandon the dogs on New Navy Base Road and Bay St. The posting states that a male subject in his mid-30’s with short hair, driving a newer black 4 wheel drive truck left the dogs and was telling them to “stay” as he drove away. One of the dogs was nearly struck by a car while chasing the truck down the road. It is not clear if the person responsible for this Craigslist post was the person who reported the loose dogs to CHP. Animal Shelter staff has replied to both Craigslist postings but have not received any response.
Abandonment of an animal is a crime. The Sheriff’s Office Animal Control Division is asking for the public’s help to identify the owner of these dogs. Anyone who recognizes the dogs and/or the back yard of the residence in the photographs is asked to call Animal Control Officer Hale at 707-840-9132 or the Crime Tip Line, 707-268-2539
HCSO Updated Press Release, dated Aug., 23, 2013:
The Humboldt County Sheriff’s Office has positively identified the suspect in this case as Salvatore Ted Arena, age 42, of Freshwater. The three dogs, Angel, Becky and Ginger, had belonged to Arena’s brother who passed away suddenly in February of this year. Arena began trying to surrender the dogs to local rescues about one week ago stating that he was moving to the East Coast. Gail Holder of K-9 Angels Rescue had been in frequent contact with Arena and was working to try to get the dogs into foster care. She received a call from him on 08/21/13 just before the dogs were found abandoned in Fairhaven. Arena told her that he had to leave the following morning and that he could not put the dogs in his truck and take them across the country with him.
The Sheriff’s Office will be seeking a warrant for Arena’s arrest. At this time we have reason to believe that he has already left the area. Anyone having information to the contrary is asked to contact the Sheriff’s Animal Control Division, 707 840-9132, or the Crime Tip Line, 707-268-2539.
Two suspects were arrested in connection with marijuana grows on two separate properties in Southern Humboldt, according to a press release from the Humboldt County Sheriff's Office today, Thurs. Aug 22-2013.
Arrested at a 40 acre property off the 3200 block of Perry Meadow Road in Briceland, were Jesus Guillermo Grass Martinez age 35 and Juan Canas age 23. During the operation Officers confiscated 599 marijuana plants and found methamphetamine, cocaine and psilocybin mushrooms. Also seized were an assault rifle with two high capacity magazines, a 12-gauge shotgun, a .45 caliber handgun, and $40,000 dollars in cash. Also at the scene was a third suspect identified as Carrie Watcher-Martinez age 40, the wife of Jesus Martinez. She was cited for cultivation and possession for sales of marijuana and released at the scene.
The second property, allegedly "under the control of Jesus Martinez", located in the 9000 block of Wilder Ridge Road Ettersburg, yielded 195 outdoor marijuana plants ranging in size from 5 foot to 8 feet. For more information see the press release below.
HCSO Press Release, dated Aug. 22, 2013:
On 08-20-2013 the Humboldt County Drug Task Force assisted by the Humboldt County Sheriff’s Office served two marijuana related search warrants in the Garberville area.
The first search warrant was served on a 40 acre parcel of property located off the 3200 block of Perry Meadow Road in Briceland at about 10:00 am. Officers located an outdoor marijuana garden on the property. Officers seized 599 marijuana plants that ranged in size from 2 foot to 3 feet. Officers located methamphetamine, cocaine and psilocybin mushrooms in the residence. Officers located an AR-15 type, .223 caliber assault rifle with two high capacity magazines, a 12 gauge shotgun and a .45 caliber handgun. Officers located $40,000 dollars in cash in the residence that was seized for possible asset forfeiture.
Officers arrested two suspects located on the property, who were identified as Jesus Guillermo Grass Martinez age 35 and Juan Canas age 23. Martinez was arrested for cultivation and possession for sales of marijuana, possession and possession for sales of methamphetamine possession of cocaine, possession and possession for sales of psilocybin mushrooms and for being armed in the commission of a felony. Martinez’s bail was set at $125,000 dollars.
Canas was arrested for cultivation and possession for sales of marijuana. Canas also had an immigration hold placed on him for being in the United States illegally. A third suspect identified as Carrie Watcher-Martinez age 40, who is Jesus Martinez wife, was cited and released at the scene for cultivation and possession for sales of marijuana.
The second search warrant was served in the 9000 block of Wilder Ridge Road Ettersburg at about 2:30 pm. This property was under the control of Jesus Martinez. Officers located 195 outdoor marijuana plants growing on the property that ranged in size from 5 foot to 8 feet. There were no suspects located on the property. This case remains under investigation by the Humboldt County Drug Task Force.
If anyone wants to report drug related activity they can contact Humboldt County Drug Task Force at 707-444-8095.
Shown below suspects Jesus Guillermo Grass Martinez and Juan Canas.
Some of the property seized in the operation is shown below.