Rogue Valley News, Wednesday, Oct. 30 – Hit n Run Suspect Search Continues

The latest news from around the Rogue Valley and Southern Oregon, from RogueValleyMagazine.com

Wednesday, October 30, 2019

Rogue Valley Weather

Today
Sunny, with a high near 53.  Overnight, low of 15 degrees.

Thursday
Sunny, with a high near 60, low overnight of 28.

Friday
Sunny, with a high near 62. Low of 31.

Saturday
Sunny, with a high near 65.

Sunday
Sunny, with a high near 66.

TODAY’s HEADLINES…

The City of Grants Pass in cooperation with the Oregon Department of Forestry Grants Pass Unit has canceled the current open burn window do to current and anticipated unfavorable fire weather. The city open burn window will be rescheduled after the area has received significant rainfall.

If you have a burn permit, it will be honored for a nine-day window yet to be determined. The Fire Prevention Bureau will be contacting those with permits with more information.

We recommend that debris piles be covered with a tarp to keep dry until after adequate rains come to ensure materials burn clean and complete. Please contact the Fire Prevention Bureau at 541-450-6200 with questions.

Oregon firefighters mobilized by the Office of State Fire Marshal to join firefighting efforts in California went to work over the weekend, after arriving in California on Sunday.

Six strike teams, represented by Chief Deputy State Fire Marshal Mariana Ruiz-Temple, of the Office of State Fire Marshal (OSFM), sent to the 350-acre Burris Fire in Mendocino County, received assignments this morning. Five of the teams are working to secure lines and mop up the Burris Fire, and one team was assigned to respond to a new incident called the Twin Fire.

Nine strike teams, represented by Assistant Chief Les Hallman of Tualatin Valley Fire & Rescue, are responding to the Kincade Fire in Sonoma County. As of this morning, the 66,231-acre fire had forced the evacuation of approximately 180,000 persons. Crews have been assigned this morning to support efforts to mitigate structure threats and construct control lines.  California is plagued with 9 major wildfires in the state at this time.

Oregon State Police (OSP) is continuing the investigation into this morning’s hit and run vehicle versus pedestrian crash on Highway 46 (Caves Highway) near the intersection of Laurel Road in rural Josephine County. 

Yesterday morning around 1:49AM, OSP troopers and emergency personnel responded to the report of a vehicle crash on Highway 46 (Caves Highway) near the intersection of Laurel Road.

Preliminary investigation revealed that a black 1999 Mercedes C28 was traveling eastbound on Highway 46 (Caves Highway) when it struck a pedestrian in the roadway.  The driver of the vehicle fled the scene prior to the arrival of first responders. The unidentified pedestrian was transported by air ambulance to Rogue Regional Medical Center with serious injuries.

This is an ongoing investigation and more information will be released when available.  

The City of Grants Pass in cooperation with the Oregon Department of Forestry Grants Pass Unit has canceled the current open burn window do to current and anticipated unfavorable fire weather.

The city open burn window will be rescheduled after the area has received significant rainfall. For those with a burn permit, it will be honored for a nine-day window yet to be determined. The Fire Prevention Bureau will be contacting those with permits with more information. They recommend that debris piles be covered with a tarp to keep dry until after adequate rains come to ensure materials burn clean and complete.

An Eagle Point man died Saturday afternoon in a single-vehicle crash.  Jackson County Sheriff’s Office (JCSO) deputies say alcohol use may have contributed to the crash. 

On October 26, 2019, at 3:28 p.m., dispatch received a 911 call from a witness reporting a crash at the intersection of Bigham Brown Road and Antelope Road.  The caller reported a car had rolled into a pasture; its single occupant was trapped inside. 

Deputies responded to the scene, along with personnel from Fire District 3 and Mercy Flights.  The driver, William Leroy Atwood, 78, was pronounced dead at the scene. 

Deputies determined Atwood was driving a 2011 Subaru Outback southbound on Bigham Brown Road.  Atwood did not slow adequately for the 90-degree right curve at the intersection with Antelope Road.  The vehicle left the roadway at a high rate of speed and rolled into a pasture.  Deputies obtained information that Atwood had been drinking alcohol prior to the crash. 

An investigator with the Jackson County Medical Examiner’s Office responded to the scene.  Toxicology tests will be conducted to confirm whether intoxicants contributed to the incident.   A dog in the vehicle was apparently not injured.  Jackson County Animal Control assisted with returning the dog to a family member. 

The Oregon Board of Forestry Subcommittee on Federal Forests will convene an evening meeting in Salem Nov. 6 from 5:15 to 6:15 p.m. The subcommittee is meeting to review recent developments regarding the 2019 Shared Stewardship agreement and next steps.

The meeting will be held in the Clatsop Room, Building C, at the Oregon Department of Forestry Headquarters, located at 2600 State St. in Salem. The meeting is open to the public and a public comment period is on the agenda. Written comments may be submitted in advance of the meeting to Boardofforestry@oregon.gov.

Meeting materials are available at
www.oregon.gov/ODF/Board/Pages/Subcommittee-of-Federal-Forests.aspx.

Accommodations for people with disabilities, and special materials, services, or assistance can be arranged by calling the ODF Public Affairs Office at 503-945-7200 at least 48 hours in advance.

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