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Medford, Ore. — You can escape the winter gray with some winter color in your garden, but you need to start thinking about that now.

OSU Extension Master Gardener, Jane Moyer ran down some options in today’s ‘In the Garden’ segment.

If you have any questions you can contact the OSU Master Gardener near you.

Jackson County – (541) 776-7371

Josephine County – (541) 476-6613

Klamath County – (541) 883-7131

Coos County – (541) 572-5263

Douglas County – (541) 672-4461

Mount AshlandASHLAND, Ore. — The new Mount Ashland General Manager is wasting no time in getting to work.

Hiram Towle says, he plans to spend the next few weeks getting to know the program and reaching out to the community. Last season, Mount Ashland was plagued with little snow, and did not open their ski season for the first time in 50 years. In May, the Mount Ashland association said the GM position would be eliminated, but decided Towle would be a good fit.

Towle says, “Working in some potential transportation initiatives, working on possibly coming up with a music series at the mountain, looking at possibly summer activities to use the entire 12 month lease that we have to really run the property.” Mount. Ashland Ski Area is focused on events for this season.

One of Towle’s first events will be the “Next 50 Years Party” in October, and season passes are already being sold for the winter.

Breaking news KDRVMEDFORD, Ore.– Parents who have children at Jefferson Elementary got texts that the school was on lockdown earlier this afternoon. Medford Police said they took a suspect into custody after the suspect stole a car from the Winco Parking lot.

The police had to chase the suspect down, and the suspect ended up crashing into a fence on Holly St. that led into the 9th fairway of the Stewart Meadows Golf Course. The suspect then drove down the middle of the fairway until he was eventually stopped by police and taken into custody.

Jefferson Elementary is no longer on lockdown as of 1:00 p.m.

Tonight, hear from the greens keeper at the golf course that saw the whole thing happen.

old stage coach CrashRICHARDSON, Ore. – Oregon State Police (OSP) is continuing the investigation following the discovery early Monday of a single vehicle fatal crash scene down a steep embankment off Old Stage Coach Road north of Highway 126W in Lane County. The ongoing investigation confirmed the deceased victim, Canyon Arthur McCardel, was driving the vehicle.

OSP was notified of the single vehicle fatal traffic crash off Old Stage Coach Road near milepost 5. A family member of Hannah H. Smith, age 18, from Eugene, who was previously reported missing to Lane County Sheriff’s Office (LCSO), discovered the wreckage down a steep embankment on railroad tracks below after hearing Smith’s screams for help while passing through the area. Smith was seriously injured and an 18-year old male, identified as CANYON ARTHUR McCARDEL from Eugene, was deceased.

LCSO and Lane Fire Authority responded to the scene and confirmed the report. OSP troopers from the Springfield Area Command office responded to investigate the crash. The railroad company was notified to prevent train traffic until the vehicle was removed and responders cleared the scene.

Preliminary investigation indicates the 2002 Mitsubishi Montero sport utility vehicle containing the two occupants was traveling on Old Stage Coach Road when it went off the roadway and down a steep embankment. The vehicle came to rest on its side on railroad tracks approximately 40 feet below. Initial information indicates the crash may have happened late Saturday night, September 13.

According to LCSO, Smith was reported missing to their department Sunday, September 14 at 7:58 p.m., after family said she did not arrive at a friend’s house Saturday night.

McCardel was not using safety restraints and was ejected from the vehicle. Smith, who also was not using safety restraints, was trapped inside the vehicle and extricated. She was transported by Western Lane Ambulance District to Sacred Heart Medical Center at RiverBend with serious, non-life threatening injuries.

Photo Courtesy: CNN

Photo Courtesy: CNN

WASHINGTON, D.C. — The US senate is expected to vote on a plan to fight back against ISIS in Syria by arming other rebel groups.

This comes a day after the US house approved the President’s plan. The Syrian rebel training authorization is tucked into a spending bill, going before US senators today. Experts say, it may be a close vote in the senate with many lawmakers against it.

Senator Joe Manchin (D. West Virginia) explains, “I strongly believe that if our military arms and trains Syrian rebels, we will be involving ourselves in a ground conflict we cannot resolve, where potentially everyone involved is our enemy.”

This comes as Australia police say they’ve thwarted a plot, involving the Islamic State Group planning to carry out beheadings in the country. Australian Police are holding six people, they’re identifying as the ringleader. Australia’s prime minister says there’s information the group was planning to behead a random person in Sydney as a “demonstration” killing.

ODFWCENTRAL POINT, Ore. — The Industrial Fire Prevention Level (IFPL) in forests and wildlands protected by the Oregon Department of Forestry in southwest Oregon lowered from level 3 to level 2 this morning. This affects the 1.8 million acres of state, county, private and Bureau of Land Management lands protected by ODF’s Southwest Oregon District in Jackson and Josephine counties.

The public fire prevention regulations as well as the restrictions in effect in the Wild and Scenic Section of the Rogue River between Grave Creek and Marial remain the same. The following IFPL 2 regulations are now in effect:

  • The use of fire in any form is prohibited
  • The use of power saws is prohibited, except at loading sites, between 1:00 p.m. and 8:00 p.m.
  • The use of cable yarders is prohibited between 1:00 p.m. and 8:00 p.m.
  • Blasting is prohibited between 1:00 p.m. and 8:00 p.m.
  • Welding and the cutting of metal are prohibited between 1:00 p.m. and 8:00 p.m.

Additionally, commercial operators on forestlands are required to have fire suppression equipment on site and provide watchman service. For more information about the Oregon Department of Forestry’s fire season regulations, contact the unit office in your area: Medford Unit, 5286 Table Rock Rd., Central Point. Phone: (541) 664-3328. Grants Pass Unit, 5375 Monument Drive, Grants Pass. Phone: (541) 474-3152. Southwest Oregon District fire precaution level information is also posted online at

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MEDFORD, Ore. — There are organizations in place to not only help people cope with the immediate shock of devastations, but to make a plan for the future which can sometimes be hard to even think about at first. The Southern Oregon chapter of Red Cross is helping the family in Medford whose home burned a few days ago, as well as the families in Weed. NewsWatch 12 was joined by Meghan O’Hara to explain some of these efforts.

EL DORADO COUNTY, Ca. — A man has been charged with Arson for the King Fire in California. The El Dorado County Superior Court charged Wayne Allen Huntsman Thursday with Arson of Forest Land, a felony.

His arraignment is scheduled for Friday, Sept. 19th in Eldorado Court at 1:00 p.m.

The King Fire has burned 70,994 acres and is 5 percent contained. It started on Sept. 13th. There are 2,007 single structures threatened and 1,505 other minor structures.

Change of Plans For Josephine CountyGrants Pass, OR – Due to limited resources of the Josephine County Sheriff’s Office during the last 28 months property crime investigations have consequently fallen to the wayside. Sheriff Gilbertson, working in concert with the District Attorney’s Office, formed a team of vetted and well-trained Volunteers and Reserves to assume this function. These teams will be considered a cold case investigative operation under the direct supervision of the Sheriff’s Office. 

Some teams have already acquired over 100 hours of training and experience. In August, training was conducted at the Illinois Valley Fire District “burn-house” on Redwood Hwy. Three teams were sent through a “mock” crime scene of a home burglary. The teams processed the scene as if it were real; taking photos, dusting for prints and writing a report. As with a “real” case, the evidence and crime report were submitted and the conclusion was a successful “test run”. This was followed by more training and mock scenes including property and vehicles. 

One team is almost ready to assume processing evidence at property crime scenes with more teams still in training. Other interested citizens willing to participate and former law enforcement personnel with investigative skills are encouraged to apply for this specialty unit.

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WEED, Calif. — While the Weed elementary and high schools are still closed for fire investigations, College of the Siskiyous is back in session for students today. Students at College of the Siskiyous are just being released from classes on the first day back since the fire.

Representatives say students had to be evacuated from dorms the day of the fire. Right now, the school is still trying to get a number of students who’ve been affected. Along with students and their families, Many members of the staff here are displaced from their homes this week and some have lost everything.

Bill Boggs, a student at College of the Siskiyous explains, “I think the classes will be smaller. Do you push through and try to stay positive? Or do you try to help the community?”

Dawnie Slabaugh, Director Public Relations with the college, says, “we are going to have counseling available for students and staff, and just trying to do everything we can to support the community.”

The counseling staff and representatives for the school say they don’t expect all of their students to be on campus today. They say the classes are a way to help people get back into their normal schedules and feel supported by their college community.

And here at the student center, students are helping each other. The associated student body has a fire information board to help students who aren’t in the affected neighborhoods understand where the fire was the most damaging and how they can help their classmates.

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