Colorado State Patrol will be out in force over the Labor Day weekend. Captain Doug Conrad is with the local Colorado State Patrol. He says they’ll especially be looking for drivers impaired by alcohol or drugs.
Captain Conrad is with Troop 4B of the State Patrol, which includes Moffat, Rio Blanco, Grand, Jackson, and Routt Counties. He said last year, they investigated seven fatal crashes and 34 other crashes related to impaired driving over the Labor Day holiday. He also wants to remind drivers to wear a seatbelt.
Turkey Vultures are starting to roost in populated areas again. Craig Police and Community Service Officers will be using bird whistles and shell crackers to get them to relocate to less populated areas. The Turkey vultures can’t be killed or hurt. If you see a turkey vulture roosting in town, call Craig Dispatch at 824-8111.
A Craig man who faces charges of first-degree murder for trying to kill his aunt, Susan Reeves, and then leaving her unconscious in a burning home in June, participated in a review hearing in Moffat County Court Tuesday. 36-year-old Jonathan Waugh appeared via video conference from the Moffat County Jail. His lawyer, Public Defender Kate Bush asked that the date for a three-hour preliminary hearing be set as far out as possible. That hearing will now be Nov. 19. Reeves was in the courtroom and expressed frustration at the delay. She is back in her home and wanted to thank the community for their support.
Big-game hunters have a chance to apply for a limited number of elk and mule deer hunts on the Miller Creek Ranch in Meeker. This is in addition to hunts available on the Collins Mountain Ranch. Both ranches are home to the White River mule deer and elk herds, which are two of the largest big game populations in the State of Colorado. All eligible hunters can apply by contacting Colorado Parks and Wildlife, in their Meeker office.
Railroad tracks were threatened by a wildfire Sunday night, which probably started from lightning. The Craig Press reports that the fire started about 10 miles southwest of Craig on the south side of the Yampa River, near County Road 30. Families at the ranch there saw smoke and then helped emergency crews find the fire. A helicopter and airplane was brought in by the Bureau of Land Management. Firetrucks were called in, and then it started to rain. Only the railroad tracks were threatened. Five other wildfires flared up in the region Sunday. The Citadel Fire was one of them, near Maybell, which burned about 300 acres. Moffat County and the City of Craig are still under Stage 1 Fire Restrictions.
School starts Monday. Students and parents will see a few changes with drop off and pick up at Sandrock Elementary and Craig Middle Schools. New sidewalks have been added as a result of a city project supported by grants from the Safe Routes to Schools Initiative. The Craig Press reports that school district personnel will be there to help direct traffic for the first few weeks of school. There are new signs up as well, reminding drivers to stay in their vehicles while waiting for kids. Handicapped accessible ramps have also been widened. Parents who have questions, can call 824-3287.
The Yampa River is in a critical state, especially in the lower stretch, which runs through Dinosaur National Monument. Colorado Division of Water Resources is considering placing the Yampa River on call, which has never happened. That means water rights owners cannot get the amount of water they have a legal right to. They have to stop using water, or reduce what they are using to send enough water downstream.
Most of Western Colorado is under a flash flood watch right now, until around noontime today. The National Weather Service out of Grand Junction says it applies to the areas where there have been fires, which includes areas in Moffat County and western Routt County. Heavy rain is expected, which can cause flash flooding, mudslides, and debris flows. Anyone near a burn scar area should be aware through mid-day today.
A fire started burning over Cedar Mountain Monday evening, about seven miles northwest of Craig. Air support is dropping bright red fire retardant on the area, to try to suppress the 5-acre wildfire on the northeastern side of the mountain top. Local emergency responders were quickly at the scene. No word on what caused the fire, but lightning had been spotted in the area from some thunderstorms.
Multiple agencies from Northwest Colorado worked together for a mass casualty and hazardous materials containment drill, at the Craig Fire Rescue Training tower. The drill was Saturday. Moffat County Sheriff KC Hume supervised the training, and told the Craig Press that it took about a year to organize. Agencies that were there were Craig Fire Rescue, Craig Haz-Mat, Steamboat Springs Fire Rescue, Memorial Regional Health, Classic Air, Atmos Energy, and Colorado State Patrol. Continue reading →
No structures have been burned in the Silver Creek Fire, but it is moving quickly, and over 4,000 acres have burned. About 200 homes in the Old Park community northwest of Kremmling have now been evacuated because of the Silver Creek fire. But 35 residents chose to not leave, and to stay in the area. Officials have closed Old Park and Highway 134 so no one can get into the area. With most residents gone, the structures and private property remain the focus of the fire crews. They are building dozerlines between the fire and buildings, and spraying fire retardant. The closest house is about six-tenths of a mile from the edge of the fire. A Red Cross Center has been set up at West Grand Middle School in Kremmling.
Rachel Niemeyer has been sentenced to 18 years in prison for the murder of her husband. Michael Adam Freese was shot in the head on October 4th, after he and Niemeyer had been drinking. They were in their motel room at Bear Valley Inn. Niemeyer denied pulling the trigger.