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The commercial Dungeness crab fishery will open in coastal waters Jan. 15 after a six-week delay, state shellfish managers announced today.

Fishery managers for the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) approved the opening in coordination with fishery managers from Oregon and California.

Astoria Police was dispatched to Small Stop Convenience store located at 180 Marine Drive Thursday night for what was originally reported as a theft. An Astoria Officer located a person in a nearby parking lot with a cloth covering the individual’s face.  Another responding officer made contact at the store and learned that the suspect gave the clerk a robbery note, demanded money and appeared to be holding what the clerk believed was a gun or other weapon in his pocket.  The clerk armed himself with a knife and did not give the suspect any money.  Prior to leaving the store, the suspect took a candy bar.

Some old-timers call it the Waldorf. More recently it's been referred to as the former Hotel Merwyn.

Either way, the building wedged between Astoria City Hall and the Astoria Public Library has been a derelict eyesore for decades.

That's maybe about to change. As reported, a new developer for the white elephant is taking the next steps in converting the structure into a multifamily, 40 unit apartment on the upper floors and commercial spaces on the Duane street front.

A trailer loaded with hay detached from the vehicle hauling it on Highway 30 Wednesday evening and crashed into two other vehicles resulting in significant damage and injuries.

62-year-old Daniel Delay was cited by state police for allowing the trailer to come loose from its tow at milepost 74 in Clatsop County.

When the trailer broke loose it rolled into the eastbound lane and hit two oncoming vehicles.  The driver and three passengers in one of the vehicles hit by the hay trailer were transported to St. Johns Medical Center in Longview, Washington with injuries. The driver of the other vehicle was not injured.

Both vehicles were towed from the scene.

A fiery crash near the Sunset Rest Area on Highway 26 resulted in serious injuries  Wednesday afternoon.

28-year-old Daniel James Wells was driving eastbound on highway 26 with a passenger identified as 28-year-old Aaron Daniel Sullivan at 4:30 pm when police say Wells lost control of the 2003 Chevy pickup on the icy highway and the vehicle slid across both westbound lanes and crashed head-on into a semi truck towing fuel.

State police say after that initial crash the pick-up rebounded rotating back across the highway and came to rest on the eastbound shoulder tipped on its side and immediately caught fire.

Passersby pulled both men from the burning pickup which became engulfed in flames. A crew from Elsie Fire put out the fire. Both men were burned. Wells was transported to Emmanuel Hospital by Medix. Sullivan was transported to OHSU by Life Flight with serious injuries. The semi driver was not injured.

Three hours later on the same stretch of highway, a Toyota Camry traveling westbound lost control on the ice and skidded off the road near the rest area and rolled. The crash resulted in some minor injuries. No other vehicles were involved.

The Oregon Department of Agriculture and the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife announced that recreational crabbing is now open from Cape Blanco, north of Port Orford, to the Columbia River. Crab samples taken from the area indicate that levels of the marine biotoxin domoic acid have dropped below the alert level.

 This reopening of the recreational season applies to crab harvested in the ocean and in bays and estuaries, and on beaches, docks, piers, and jetties. Recreational crab harvesting remains closed along the southern Oregon coast from Cape Blanco to the California border due to elevated levels of domoic acid.

Crab and shellfish products sold in retail markets and restaurants remain safe for consumers.

 It is always recommended to eviscerate the crab and discard the “butter” (viscera or guts) prior to cooking. When the whole crab is cooked in liquid, domoic acid may leach into the cooking liquid. It is recommended to discard the cooking liquid, and do not use it in other dishes, such as sauces, broths, soups, stews, stocks, roux, dressings, etc. The consumption of crab viscera is not recommended.

 

An Amtrak train with a reported 70 passengers aboard derailed south of Seattle, and authorities said initally there were multiple "injuries and casualties". As emergency responders began to arrive they said there were fatalities amongst passengers on the train.

The train derailed about 40 miles south of Seattle about 7:40 am Monday, spilling train cars on to busy Interstate 5.

The run was a first for this high-speed version of the Amtrak Cascades which a reporter on board the train said was averaging 79 miles an hour as it was traveling south of Tacoma heading for Portland. It isn't known how fast the train was traveling at the time of the accident.

All southbound lanes of Interstate 5 were closed south of Joint Base Lewis-McChord, and motorists were being warned to avoid the area. Authorities reported some injuries to people traveling in vehicles on the freeway but no deaths

Monday was the first day of schedule changes to include two new round trips between Seattle and Portland, according to the Amtrak website. Amtrak train 501 runs between Portland and Seattle daily. 

The southbound lanes of Interstate 5, which see about 60,000 vehicles per day, are expected to be closed for "an extended period," according to the WSDOT.

The Clatsop County Sheriff's Office, in conjunction with the Clatsop County Medical Examiner, the Clatsop County Fire Investigation Team and the Oregon State Fire Marshal's Office, is currently investigating the death of an adult male whose body was found within the scene of a residential structure fire Thursday evening. The deceased has been identified as 59-year-old Richard Lee Huddleston. Investigation of the scene and evidence collected is ongoing but at this time Investigators do not believe Huddleston's death to be suspicious. The cause of the fire also remains under investigation. Further information may be released following an autopsy currently scheduled to be conducted by the Oregon State Medical Examiner's Office.

The 2017 Legislature created four tax programs to help fund a statewide transportation package: the bicycle excise tax, the vehicle privilege tax, the vehicle use tax, and the statewide transit tax. Here's a rundown.

At approximately 1:33 p.m. on Wednesday, December 13, Seaside Fire and Rescue responded to a two-alarm structure fire at 719 Avenue S in Seaside. The two-story, single family structure was fully engulfed in flames when crews arrived on scene.

 
The Ghadar Party plaque mysteriously disappeared on October 23rd, from its designated location at the Maritime Memorial Park in Astoria. The plaque recognized the founders of the Indian liberation movement who immigrated to Astoria from Eastern India, mostly as mill workers who worked at the Hammond Mill in Alderbrook. The Ghadar movement eventually led to the independence of India and Pakistan from British colonial rule. State Senator Betsy Johnson, Willis Van Dusen, former mayor and owner of Van Dusen Beverages, Inc., Lovekesh Kumar, owner of the Super Mart in Warrenton, and Bahadur Singh, brother of Kumar have all donated personal funds to replace the missing plaque.

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