Science

Thursday, October 25, 2018

SECOND UPDATE: Warning Issued on Dungeness Crab After Testing Shows Toxin

Posted By on Thu, Oct 25, 2018 at 10:21 AM

As crab season nears, domoic acid raises its ugly head. - C. JUHASZ/CDFW WEBSITE
  • C. Juhasz/CDFW website
  • As crab season nears, domoic acid raises its ugly head.
SECOND UPDATE:
The California Department of Fish and Wildlife has “enacted a delay” of the recreational Dungeness crab season for areas stretching from Patrick’s Point to the Oregon border due to “unhealthy levels” of domoic acid.

UPDATE: The California Department of Public health is now warning the public against eating Dungeness crab caught from Patrick’s Point near Trinidad to the Oregon border due to elevated levels of domoic acid.

“Dangerous levels of domoic acid have been detected in the body meat and internal organs of Dungeness crab from this region,” the release states. “Cooking crabs neither decreases nor destroys the toxin.”

The Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment, or OEHHA, in consultation with CDPH, is now recommending a delay in the opening of the recreational crab season in these areas. The season was slated to begin Nov. 5.

PREVIOUS:

The most recent round of domoic acid testing in Dungeness crab shows a few “hot spots” of elevated test levels, including samplings off Trinidad and George Reef in Del Norte County.

California Department of Public Health results of the six samples taken at those locations between late September and early this month show elevated levels were found in varying degrees. One location in the Bay Area, Bodega Bay, also showed higher domoic acid levels while San Francisco, Half Moon Bay, Monterey and Morro Bay sectors tested clear.

Domoic acid, as most of us will remember, all but destroyed the 2015 season. This year’s recreational season is currently slated to start Nov. 3 with the commercial season opening on Nov. 15.


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Sunday, October 7, 2018

SpaceX's Falcon 9 Rocket Spotted in North Coast Skies

Posted By on Sun, Oct 7, 2018 at 8:49 PM

SpaceX's Falcon 9 rocket as seen from the North Coast. - SUBMITTED
  • submitted
  • SpaceX's Falcon 9 rocket as seen from the North Coast.

Three readers reported seeing an unusual light in the southern skies. Most likely this is related to the SpaceX’s Falcon 9 rocket which launched around 7:30 p.m. Pacific time.

According to Ars Technica:

After it separated from the second stage, the first stage of the Falcon 9 rocket arrested its forward movement, and began falling back toward Earth. It, too, found success in landing at a new site north of Los Angeles. This marked the first time a Falcon 9 rocket had landed on the West Coast, and was SpaceX’s 30th landing of a first stage overall.

The National Weather Service's webcam set up in Kneeland also caught a glimpse of the rocket:

We’d love to see any photos that you managed to get. Please upload them in the comment section.

Editor's note: This story first appeared on www.kymkemp.com and is reposted here with permission.
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Wednesday, October 3, 2018

Flash Flood Watch Issued for Mendocino Complex Burn Scar

Posted By on Wed, Oct 3, 2018 at 2:08 PM

NWS
  • NWS

The National Weather Service has issued a flash flood watch, in effect until 7 p.m., for areas impacted by the Mendocino Complex fire.

According to the NWS, scattered showers and isolated thunderstorms could produce “intense rainfall that may cause debris flows and flash flooding in these areas."

In Mendocino County, Cold Creek along State Route 20 is most at risk. For a detail hazard map, visit here. The Mendocino Complex, the largest wildfire in California history with more than 400,000 acres burned, was contained last month.

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Thursday, September 6, 2018

UPDATE: Delta Fire Explodes in Size: Closure of I-5 Impacting SR 299

Posted By on Thu, Sep 6, 2018 at 12:19 PM

Delta Fire closes down a stretch of I-5. - CHP
  • CHP
  • Delta Fire closes down a stretch of I-5.
UPDATE:
CHP in Redding posted on Facebook that there is currently no estimated time for Interstate 5 to reopen, reiterating that the agency understands the importance of the roadway but public safety is its No. 1 priority.

“At this time, we do not have an estimated time of opening. There are several debris in the roadway which have to be removed, bridges to inspect, guardrail to repair, signs to inspect,” the post states. “Please know we are trying our hardest. We want to ensure it is safe to open before it is opened to traffic.”

PREVIOUSLY:
The rapidly growing Delta Fire reportedly began yesterday just before 1 p.m. as three separate fires near the Vollmers exit on Interstate 5 at the north end of Shasta Lake. The fires combined into an inferno that burned quickly over a large area – 15,294 acres as of this morning.

With a 45-mile stretch of Interstate 5 shut down on the northbound side from Fawndale Road north of Redding and southbound at Mott Road, north of Dunsmuir, due to the blaze, Caltrans is cautioning drivers to expect heavier than normal traffic on State Route 299 between Weaverville and Redding.

For up-to-date traffic information, visit http://quickmap.dot.ca.gov.

InciWeb reports that fire behavior was extreme “with rapid rates of spread up to one mile per hour…observed. The fire front was up to three miles wide on the northern side with approximately 300-foot flame lengths.”

Jefferson Public Radio report that residents in the area are posting photos of a pyrocumulus cloud — also known as a fire cloud — which can create a turbulent atmosphere inside that results in a self-generated thunderstorm. A similar phenomenon occurred in the Carr Fire, which would go on to spawn a massive fire whirl that killed a firefighter and caused a swath of damage with winds up to 165 miles and a base the size of three-football fields.


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Wednesday, August 22, 2018

North Coast Night Lights: Beach Bonfire, Meteor and Milky Way

Posted By on Wed, Aug 22, 2018 at 1:09 PM

Looking south from Tepona Point on the night of Aug. 11, 2018.
  • Looking south from Tepona Point on the night of Aug. 11, 2018.
The Perseid meteor shower has come and gone, peaking last weekend on Saturday and Sunday, Aug. 11 and 12. On the night of the 11th, my brother and I set out to Tepona Point, along Scenic Drive south of Trinidad, hopeful of capturing some of the terrestrial beauty of the North Coast beneath Perseid meteors and the celestial wonders of our night sky. Mars, Saturn and Jupiter were with us above, and arcing across everything was the Milky Way.

We were treated early to a gorgeous night, though it had been mostly overcast during the week prior. At night, the steep stairs and slim trail out to the tip of the point felt extremely narrow, particularly with darkness falling away on either side to the crashing surf far below. It would be a terrible time for an earthquake, I thought as we negotiated the narrows. When we finally stood at the tip of the jutting outcrop of Tepona Point, the Pacific Ocean pounded on the rocks on three sides of us.

The waves rolled and broke as they normally would, but in the photograph the ocean appears completely smooth. The 30-second exposure I used allowed the wave motion to average out to the silky surface you see here, another instance of the camera seeing the world differently in low light from the way we see it. Our eyes could only dimly see the waves below, lively with the incoming tide.


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Thursday, August 16, 2018

Report Finds Firefighter Killed in Carr Fire Tornado; Smoke Impacts Continue

Posted By on Thu, Aug 16, 2018 at 12:21 PM

Aftermath of the Carr Fire "fire whirl." - CALFIRE/NWS
  • Calfire/NWS
  • Aftermath of the Carr Fire "fire whirl."
With wildfires continuing to scorch the West, the resulting smoke is continuing to have an impact on air quality in Humboldt County that ranges from good to unhealthy depending on the area.

The deadly Carr Fire to the east has burned nearly 215,000 acres and killed at least eight people, including a Redding firefighter who a recent report says died after becoming engulfed in a tornado of fire, according to multiple media reports.

A San Francisco Chronicle story detailing Calfire’s report on Jeremiah “Jeremy” Stoke’s death states the 37 year old was overcome by a massive fire whirl with winds up to 165 miles and a base the size of three-football fields.


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Tuesday, August 7, 2018

Trump's Fire Tweets Decried as Congressional Delegation Urges Disaster Declaration

Posted By on Tue, Aug 7, 2018 at 6:31 PM

Map of the Mendocino Complex. - CALFIRE
  • Calfire
  • Map of the Mendocino Complex.
With the Mendocino Fire Complex — an explosive combination of the River and Ranch fires — now officially ranked as the largest in California’s history at nearly 300,000 acres, a congressional delegation sent a letter today urging President Donald Trump to declare a major disaster in Mendocino, Lake and Napa counties.

The move would free up federal resources for firefighting and recovery efforts, something Trump did Saturday for Shasta County in response to the devastating Carr Fire that has killed at least seven people, destroyed more than 1,000 homes and burned more than 167,000 acres, according to Calfire’s latest report.

The most up-to-date fire information, including road closures and evacuations, can be found at www.fire.ca.gov/current_incidents and inciweb.nwcg.gov/.

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Friday, July 13, 2018

What Are You Doing This Weekend?

Posted By on Fri, Jul 13, 2018 at 3:01 PM

Get out and see the redwoods. - FILE
  • FILE
  • Get out and see the redwoods.
Editor’s note: With a weekend forecast of a balmy 70 degrees along the coast while hitting close to 100 inland, now seems like a good time to dust off our look at perfect summer trips from the spring 2014 Insider magazine.

Weather aside: The National Weather Service Office in Eureka reports there is a slight chance of thunderstorms this afternoon — 20 percent — throughout the greater Humboldt County region.

Meanwhile, if you are starting to form some plans for the next couple of days, check out the suggestions below. Happy summer.


So, did you pack your hiking boots or a sketchpad? Are you scoping out galleries or restaurants (or both)? Are you looking for a little history, or just hoping to wear out the kids? Whether you're searching for trailheads or artisanal breads, we've got you covered with customized itineraries so you can coast through your trip to the North Coast.


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Tuesday, March 27, 2018

Tsunami Warning Test Set for Tomorrow

Posted By on Tue, Mar 27, 2018 at 4:50 PM

Fifty-four years ago today, at 5:36 p.m., the earth beneath southern Alaska began to shake — and continued to shake for nearly five minutes — with a force that still marks the Good Friday temblor as the largest ever to hit the United States.

More than 100 people were killed by the magnitude-9.2 quake and ensuing tsunamis — some as high as 100 feet — which caused $311 million in damage (some $2.3 billion in today’s dollars).

That includes 11 people who lost their lives when a series of four wave surges hit the shores of Crescent City starting just before midnight and continuing for two more hours.

Several more have followed in the ensuing decades but the passage of time has brought not just improved technology but a greater awareness of the region’s tsunami vulnerability from seismic forces both near and far.

This week marks not just that tragic anniversary but also Tsunami Preparedness Week and tomorrow the National Weather Service and the county will conduct a test of the local emergency alert system.

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Wednesday, February 21, 2018

More Brrrr in the Forecast This Week

Posted By on Wed, Feb 21, 2018 at 12:17 PM

weatherstory1.png
That really cold weather thing is not over yet.

The National Weather Service has issued a winter weather advisory for Thursday, 4 a.m. to 4 p.m., for interior areas of Humboldt County above 2,000 feet, including Berry Summit.
Snow accumulation of 3 to 4 inches is possible, according to the advisory, creating hazardous travel conditions.

For those on the coast, there is a hard freeze watch (mid to upper 20s) being called for Thursday evening into Friday morning, but things could get a bit hairy before then with small hail expected Thursday afternoon that could cover roadways. To top it all off, strong north winds gusting at 35 mph are possible in “exposed location.”

Remember to bring in the animals and if you know someone who needs help, here’s more information on emergency weather shelters.
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