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Pummeled by Storms, Douglas County Declares State of Emergency

With sustained severe weather conditions for much of the past week, the Douglas County Board of Commissioners declared a state of emergency.

Posted: Feb 27, 2019 5:28 PM
Updated: Feb 27, 2019 5:45 PM

ROSEBURG, Ore. — While the southernmost Oregon counties have seen, at most, an unusual amount of rain and snow this week, Douglas County has taken the brunt of a series of storms — with heavy snow bringing down trees and power lines, restricting travel and leaving thousands without electricity.

On Wednesday, the Douglas County Boar of Commissioners declared a state of emergency, according to a joint statement issued by the Douglas County Sheriff's Office (DCSO).

"The order was recorded and forwarded onto our Emergency Manager for processing, and submission to the State and Governor Brown’s office requesting an official emergency declaration for Douglas County," DCSO said. "The order cited severe winter storms, heavy snowfall, widespread power outages and road closures from downed trees and power lines."

An emergency declaration from the Governor's office would allow "increased flexibility," DCSO said, in how services are managed — making sure that the safety of residents is assured.

"The Governor’s emergency declaration will also authorize state agencies to expedite additional resources services management tools to users who would not otherwise have access," DCSO said.

Meanwhile, Pacific Power said that crews had been working throughout the day on snowy roads amid "a massive amount of damage," restoring power to about 6,000 people between the Willamette Valley and Roseburg areas.

“We are getting close to restoring the last of the customers in the Willamette Valley communities such as Cottage Grove and Lebanon where fewer than 650 customers remain without power,” said David Lucas, vice president of operations. “Overnight, we will be moving additional crews and resources to Douglas County to concentrate on this area of widespread damage.”

By Thursday afternoon, the utility estimated that it would have 200 crew members working in Douglas county alone — removing trees, repairing power lines, and fixing other damaged equipment. But Pacific Power said that the ongoing weather conditions would make for "slow going."

“The patience and support our crews have seen in the community have been great,” said Sam Carter, regional business manager for Douglas County. “It has been a lot to endure, but as I talk with people from around the county, it looks like neighbors are helping each other get through it.”

In the meantime, and Emergency Operations Center has been set up at the Sheriff's Office to get emergency services where they are needed, plus providing updates to locals.

"Do not call 9-1-1 to determine when your power will be turned back on," DCSO said. "The emergency dispatchers do not have access to this information. Contact your power company directly to determine an estimated time of restoration."

Shelters and warming centers have been set up at several locations in Douglas County:

 - American Red Cross Shelter - Winston Foursquare Church, 540 SE Main St, Winston, OR
 - Dream Center - 813 SE Lane Street, Roseburg, OR (Open 7p – 7a) - (541) 673-5918
 - Yoncalla Elementary Gym - 400 First Street, Yoncalla, OR
 - Sutherlin Community Center - 150 Willamette Street, Sutherlin, OR

"We continue to encourage residents travel with caution," DCSO said. "If driving is required, motorists should be prepared for potential hazards and plan accordingly. If traveling ensure you have sufficient emergency supplies including food, water, medications, winter clothing, flashlights and blankets. Give yourself extra time to get to your destination and reduce your speed."

Oregon Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 357526

Reported Deaths: 4284
CountyCasesDeaths
Multnomah55810707
Washington38782324
Marion36837455
Clackamas29779309
Lane27744302
Jackson23059310
Deschutes20336125
Umatilla14492150
Linn12911131
Douglas12118243
Josephine9384196
Yamhill8715113
Klamath8020119
Polk737381
Malheur563677
Benton549431
Coos503794
Columbia382644
Jefferson376052
Lincoln319939
Union319549
Crook291846
Wasco288841
Clatsop244328
Baker203529
Tillamook196932
Hood River192837
Morrow185023
Curry180625
Harney113927
Grant100013
Lake93912
Wallowa68612
Gilliam1544
Sherman1523
Wheeler1121
Unassigned00

California Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 4850807

Reported Deaths: 71341
CountyCasesDeaths
Los Angeles148419226540
Riverside3716705041
San Diego3673614183
San Bernardino3586775692
Orange3242885562
Sacramento1596362309
Kern1463481648
Fresno1463182094
Santa Clara1455431897
Alameda1206921400
San Joaquin1027761721
Ventura1010381167
Contra Costa1000181008
Stanislaus862991335
Tulare80375978
San Francisco54440649
San Mateo54168623
Monterey50911586
Solano46063341
Santa Barbara45223523
Merced42422581
Sonoma40997404
Placer39435429
Imperial36071766
Kings32938325
San Luis Obispo29973333
Madera23955285
Shasta23924352
Butte23818273
Santa Cruz21034221
Yolo20397248
Marin17706244
El Dorado17207149
Sutter13937175
Napa12898100
Yuba1011582
Tehama9534110
Humboldt9269109
Nevada916790
Mendocino766787
Lassen754347
San Benito744972
Tuolumne691790
Lake6631105
Amador547364
Siskiyou451246
Glenn438433
Calaveras391481
Del Norte358742
Colusa307618
Inyo214241
Mono16723
Plumas16607
Mariposa133916
Trinity88011
Modoc6895
Sierra1880
Unassigned1460
Alpine1050
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