KPQ News

Soap Lake Shooting Suspect Arrested

Posted Sunday 5:09 pm 8/2/15 from Grant County Sheriff Facebook page

Soap Lake standoff over. Suspect in custody and shelter in place cancelled.

SOAP LAKE, Wash. (02AUGUST2015) – Grant County Sheriff’s Office reports that a man discharging a gun from a tree in the Lakeview area of Soap Lake today is now in custody and the standoff is over. No one was hurt during the incident.

The shelter in place for area residents has therefore been cancelled. It is safe for residents to come out.

 

Posted Sunday 1:28 PM 8/2/15

From Grant County Sheriff's Department Facebook post. . . 

More information on shooter in Soap Lake: The suspect that GCSO has surrounded now in a grove of trees was involved in an assault earlier today. Law enforcement responded, went looking for him, and initially found him in the Lakeview area near St. Andrews and 20 NW. The suspect then ran into a nearby grove of trees where he remains.

He is believed to be armed with a handgun and GCSO reports hearing 3 rounds fired from trees. No one has been hurt.

Residents in the area of 20 NW and St Andrews are asked to stay indoors and report any suspicious activity to 911. All others are asked to continue to avoid the area.

We will continue to keep you posted as information becomes available.

Kyle Foreman 
Public Information Officer 

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Wolverine Fire Expands to over 15,000 Acres. Domke Lake Cabins Destroyed

Posted Sunday 12.55 PM 8/2/15
Yesterday’s Activities: The Wolverine Fire, burning on the west shore of Lake Chelan, made significant growth over a 24 hour period.  A Saturday night infra-red flight showed the fire had expanded to 15,760 acres.  High temperatures and low humidity provided ideal conditions for active fire behavior. The fire moved southwest along the lakeshore between the Twin Harbor and Little Creek drainages and northwest to Bridal Vail Creek. 

 

After a safe evacuation of the majority of Holden Village residents and mine remediation workers in the morning by boat, at 5:30pm the remaining residents were safely evacuated by helicopter due to Forest Service road 8301 being compromised by fire activity.  Operations at Holden Village and the Holden Mine Remediation are suspended due to fire activity.

Today’s Activities:  At 6:00am today, Type 2 overhead team took over Wolverine Fire operations.  They are in the processes of bringing on more resources.  Three primary groups will be stationed up lake; the Lucerne group will continue with structure protection, mop up and protection of Holden Village. The Lake group will monitor and protect structures along the lakeshore and a third group will be stationed in Stehekin.  Currently there is one hotshot crew and one Initial Attack crew onsite in Lucerne. 

One resident is still at Domke Lake.  Crews will assess and clear the Domke Lake trail today for his safe extraction.  Crews will also clear and patrol the FS road 8301 to Holden which is blocked by debris and rollouts from yesterday’s fire activity.  Structures lost at Domke Lake will be assessed, but are estimated to be at least 3.

There is no spot fire across Lake Chelan, and the fire is not expected to cross the lake. 

The Pacific Crest Trail Detour is CLOSED heading into Holden Village and out of Stehekin as conditions are rapidly changing on the ground.  Northbound hikers will be rerouted out Suiattle River Trail to Suiattle River Road and can shuttle up Highway 20 to Rainy Pass and reconnect with the PCT. 

The Detour is CLOSED southbound in Stehekin at the Harlequin Bridge/Stehekin River Road.  Southbound hikers will need to backtrack or take the Lady of the Lake into Chelan.  Hikers are advised to contact the National Park Service office in Stehekin or the Forest Service office in Chelan for information.  Additional trail and area closures are expected in this area due to fire conditions.

A high pressure system sitting over the fire is causing an inversion.  Smoke is heavy over the fire which creates poor visibility and safety concerns for firefighters.  High temperatures throughout the day combined with low humidity and gusty winds in late afternoon will lead to increased fire activity.

A public meeting will be held tonight at 7pm at the Chelan Fire Station, 2 32 E Wapato Ave, Chelan, WA 98816.  Fire managers and Chelan District Ranger Kari Grover Wier will give a presentation on the Wolverine Fire and will be available for questions. 

 

 
Posted Saturday 10:19 AM 8/1/15
                                                           
Lucerne Wash.­­— Yesterday, several hundred staff at Holden Village and Holden Mine Remediation were successfully evacuated through a combined effort with Holden Village, Rio Tinto, Lake Chelan Boat Company, Chelan County Sherriff’s Office and the US Forest Service.  Holden Village is not threatened but a Level 3 evacuation was necessary as Lucerne Landing was in danger which is the evacuation route for the Village.  Operations at the Holden Mine Remediation have been temporarily suspended due to fire activity.
 
The Wolverine fire was very active overnight and into this morning, growing to approximately 4,000 acres.  Late afternoon yesterday a spot fire was reported from the air ½ mile south of Lightning Creek along the lakeshore.  The spot fire made significant runs up Lightning Creek and is now well established on Lightning Ridge.  Helicopters engaged the fire with bucket drops in attempts to slow growth. 
 
At around 8:00pm another spot fire was reported across Railroad Creek which made a run uphill toward Domke Lake, where several structures were lost.  The owner of Domke Lake Resort at Domke Lake is safe and all guests had evacuated prior to the to the fires movement.  The Entiat Hotshots performed burnout operations above Lucerne to protect structures.  Combine spot fires are estimated at 1,200 acres.
 
The main fire has also moved north across Riddle Creek and down the drainage. (PHOTO, from Stehekin, COURTESY BOB NIELSON AND GOLAKECHELAN.COM)
 
Sunday morning an overhead team will take over Wolverine Fire operations.  More resources are on order to continue with suppression efforts and evacuation.
 
The Pacific Crest Trail Detour is CLOSED heading into Holden Village and out of Stehekin as conditions are rapidly changing on the ground.  Northbound hikers will be rerouted out Suiattle River Trail to Suiattle River Road and can shuttle up Highway 20 to Rainy Pass and reconnect with the PCT. 
 
The Detour is CLOSED southbound in Stehekin at the Harlequin Bridge/Stehekin River Road.  Southbound hikers will need to backtrack or take the Lady of the Lake into Chelan.  Hikers are advised to contact the National Park Service office in Stehekin or the Forest Service office in Chelan for information.  Additional trail and area closures are expected in this area due to fire conditions.
 
There is a Temporary Flight Restriction area established and pilots should avoid the area.  Helicopters and fire suppression activities will be taking place along the shoreline from Refrigerator Harbor campground north to Stehekin Landing and boaters are requested to remain well away from the shoreline in the fire area.
 
Level 3 evacuations are in effect for Holden Village, Lucerne, Riddle and Lightning Creek.  Domke Lake, Lucerne and Refrigerator Harbor campgrounds are closed until further notice.
 
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Gas tax increase takes effect

OLYMPIA, Wash (AP) - The price of gas may be going down nationally, but Washington drivers may see slightly higher prices at the pump as the state's gas tax makes the first of a two-step increase. The state gas tax increased by 7 cents a gallon Saturday, bringing total state gas taxes up to 44.5 cents a gallon. Adding in the federal gas tax of 18.4 cents, total gas taxes in Washington are now 62.9 cents a gallon. Because the tax is paid by fuel wholesalers, not added directly to prices at the pump, it's uncertain how much of an increase drivers will see. The increase is the first of two that are part of a $16 billion revenue package approved by the Legislature this year. The 16-year plan pays for transportation projects across Washington. Next summer, the tax will increase an additional 4.9 cents a gallon.

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Tragedy a sad reminder to drive carefully

POsted Saturday, 08-01-15

The death of an East Wenatchee motorcyclist last Thursday highlights how quickly a drive, or ride can turn to tragedy. Douglas County Sheriff Harvey Gjesdal implores drivers to watch for motorcycles. On his facebook page Gjesdal says he was a motorcycle officer for two years in a large police department and had many close calls because other motorists didn't see him.....on a police bike.

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According to the Washington Traffic Safety Commission from 2011 to 2013 motorcycles, which made up four percent of the registered vehicles on Washington roads, accounted for almost 17 percent of all traffic fatalities.

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Positive news from Pangborn

Posted Saturday, 08-01-15

Things are looking up, way up at Pangborn Memorial Airport. Craig Larsen with the Port of Chelan County says the number of passengers flying through the East Wenatchee airport on Alaska Air are up 11.2% in the first six months of the year, compared to the same time period last year.

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Larsen credits the improving economy and the Port's marketing efforts as factors behind the increase. Continued strong passenger growth bodes well for the Port's ability to attract new air service once the Airport's runway extension is complete in the fall of 2016.

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