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Cal Fire has set up an air attack base at the Ukiah Airport ahead of this fire season. The Daily Journal reports there will be two 1,200-gallon air tankers at the airport and there will be more crews brought to the area for the season. There will also be a chopper in Willits to chip in during fire season. The whole rotation of tankers and the helicopter put in place this past weekend and will be here until the rainy season in the fall. The airplanes and crews will be assigned to Ukiah and Mendocino County, but may also chip in elsewhere, and may reportedly head to Oregon or Nevada if they’re not needed locally. The newspaper also reports Cal Fire has been preparing all winter for wildfire season and were first involved in vegetation management.

A Wool Growers Field Day has been held by The Hopland Research and Extension Center. The event last Saturday on the obstacles in Mendocino County raising sheep and goats. The event featured several local groups including the North Bay Wool Growers Association, Full Circle Wool, Shephard Ranch and Wild Oat Hollow. There were talks and demonstrations all day that included grazing, sheep and wool production, shearing, sheepdog training and even sheep/goat cheese tasting.

The yearly Search and Rescue Helicopter Training at Lake Mendocino has been held. For the fourth year training over a weekend for more than 2 dozen agencies including the California National Guard, Mendocino County Search and Rescue, Napa County Sheriff Volunteer Search & Rescue, Cal Fire Mendocino Unit, Ukiah Valley Fire and the Cal OES. The Sheriff’s Office says the goal was to educate rescue volunteers si they’re better prepared for random issues that could come up in a search operation.

A legal motion’s been filed to make sure the state’s cell phone system can work even in the case of a massive wildfire. As we’ve heard over the last couple of years during major events, there was no cell service due to damage to cell towers and electrical lines. Now the Public Advocates’ office at the California Public Utilities Commission trying to avert that again. During the Camp Fire last year, there were 66 cell phone sites either damaged or out of service. So the advocates want the Commission to require carriers to have backup batteries or generators at their sites in high risk fire zones so emergency alerts can go out and 911 calls get answered.

A union representing 4,000 Kaiser Permanente mental health workers across the state is going on strike. The union announced yesterday they’d walk out next week as a protest against massive staffing shortages and too low pay. The strike set to start next Tuesday unless a deal can be reached before that. It could affect almost 100 Kaiser therapists and mental health workers in Sonoma County. The National Union of Healthcare Workers leaders say Kaiser’s contract proposals are to hire more temporary staff rather than full-time therapists and full timers have too much work for too little pay.

A man in Lucerne’s been arrested after a report of an assault at a local park. The Lake County Sheriff’s Dept reports getting a call to Alpine Park last Friday afternoon finding a man there with a major head injury. Witnesses say another man, in his 20’s walked up yelling at the victim for supposedly urinating in front of children.  The victim says his back was to the suspect who punched him in the head causing him to fall to the ground.  The suspect then ran from the park. Witnesses id’d him as Taylor Rolan Fabisch of Upper Lake.  He was arrested the next day and admitted he was at the park the day before, but that he never assaulted anyone. He was booked for Battery with Serious Bodily Injury anyway, with bail set at $30,000.

A trucker in Northern Calif. has rescued a rare, all white fawn and taken to a rescue center. The Sacramento Bee reports the small albino deer was found in the middle of a road in Woodland. Kindred Spirits Fawn Rescue says it was about 3-weeks-old and its mother has not been found. The Rescue says it’s the first time they’ve seen an albino deer since they’ve been operating the rescue and rehabilitation center where they can help 50 to 80 fawns a year.

Bank of America has donated its former bank building in Lakeport so the city’s using it as a new community center. And for that, a public ceremony and celebration. On Friday, city officials are presenting a plaque for the building donation for those responsible. The festivities start at 2 p.m. at 500 N. Main St., with city leaders and council members on hand. A tour of the space will follow. The bank building closed in November 2017 because of less customers physically coming into the building and using online services or mobile devices instead. The city got money from a Community Development Block Grant to study ways for revitalization and feedback from the community was that a community center was a primary need in Lakeport.

Healthcare services at Adventist Health Clear Lake expanding into Lucerne. The company is taking over a practice, that of Dr. Robert Gardner and two advanced practice providers. They’ll all join the Adventist Health Clear Lake team. The office in the old Lucerne Community Clinic at 6300 East Highway 20 in Lucerne.  There are also offices already in Clearlake, Hidden Valley Lake, Kelseyville, Lakeport, Lower Lake and Middletown. The healthcare company says they’re committed to Lake County for quality healthcare and are excited Dr. Gardner has joined their team serving the Lucerne community. The other two practitioners in Lucerne are Physican’s Asst. Joe Geare and therapist, Deborah Johnson.

A little shaking going on in Cobb. A couple of moderately sized earthquakes shook the area. Lake Co News reports last night around dinner time, a 3.9-magnitude quake at 6:44 p.m. then a 3.5-magnitude a minute later. The US Geological Survey reports the first one was about 4 miles west northwest of Cobb, just inside the Sonoma County line with about 77 shake reports associated with it. The smaller quake, was 3.2 miles southwest of Cobb, also centered in Sonoma County. Shake reports from Lake, Mendocino and Sonoma counties.

Adventist Health Ukiah Valley getting accolades, an A grade from Leapfrog. The group gives hospital safety grades, ranking Adventist Health Ukiah Valley one of the safest hospitals in the United States. The grading shows a hospital is committed to curbing errors, infections and accidents. The group takes into account various patient safety measures including low infection rates, patient falls, preventable complications from surgery and leadership engagement, clear communication of medication administration, staffing levels and provider communication.

A new Mendocino County Sheriff’s substation has opened in Mendocino. The Mendocino Headlands station opened to a celebratory hot dog roast May 22nd. Former Sheriffs Jim Tuso and Tony Craver were there as the current Sheriff Tom Allman spoke to those gathered there. The Sheriff says they’re not changing much about staffing but does say there will be more deputies patrolling using the new substation as a base. It’s an old carriage house that was supposed to be torn down in the 1970s. But Sheriff Allman says California State Parks provided the land and funding, then the Mendocino Historical Review Board helped with the building’s appearance to fit with historic Mendocino. It was also recently chosen for a Historic Preservation Award.

 

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