Author Archives: klamathalerts

Indirect strategy being used to suppress lightning caused “Silver Creek” fire in South Central Oregon


The Silver Creek Fire is a lightning caused fire that was discovered on July 14 on the Silver Lake Ranger District, Fremont-Winema National Forest one mile south of Thompson Reservoir. The fire is currently burning in ponderosa pine and needle cast with low fire behavior. With the recent moisture in the area this presented fire managers with an opportunity to use an indirect strategy to suppress the Silver Creek Fire which will reduce fuel loadings and in turn help improve rangeland forage in the area.

Crews will be going indirect by using existing roads and natural features to confine this naturally ignited wildfire.  Afterward, crews will continue with a burnout operation to secure the fires edge.  Much like a prescribed fire, this naturally caused fire will help reduce the dead and down fuel loading and improve wildlife habitat. Promoting long-term ecosystem integrity and sustainability by reducing the risk of high-severity wildland fires in the future.

Operations will start this evening and continue through the day tomorrow. When complete the fire is expected to have treated approximately ninety-five acres. Smoke may impact Thompson Reservoir but is expected to be short in duration.

Recreation sites in the area include Thompson Reservoir and East Bay Campground.

When safe to do so, fire personnel will manage naturally occurring wildfires to improve habitat and restore ecological balance to our wildlands.

Land managers regularly work with stakeholders to strategically select vegetation treatment areas.  These treatments are proactive actions designed to protect communities and other values before a wildfire occurs.

As the weather continues to dry out, firefighters are prepared to address any wildfires discovered in the coming weeks.

Area residents and visitors can report suspected wildfires by calling the Lakeview Interagency Fire Center at 541-947-6315.

Forest visitors are asked to be careful with fire and anything that can throw a spark.  Campfires should never be left unattended and should be dead out before leaving.  This means drowned with water, stirred and be cold to the touch with no warm spots.

Klamath County Sheriff Asking For Public Help Locating Firearm Used In Crime

The Klamath County Sheriff’s Office is requesting the public’s assistance in locating a discarded firearm used in a crime.

Detectives are investigating a serious assault that occurred during the early morning hours of Tuesday July 2nd in the south suburban area. They have uncovered information that a firearm was discarded immediately following the pre-dawn assault on Harlan Drive between Keller Drive and Hope Street.

A search of the area has thus far been unsuccessful in locating the gun. It is believed that the evidence has been removed from the scene. The handgun is evidence of a crime and is essential for criminal prosecution. If you have information pertaining to the recovery or the current location of the handgun contact the Sheriff’s Office Tip-Line at 541-883-5130 and select 5.

Small Private Airplane Makes Emergency Landing In Field

A small aircraft had engine problems forcing it land in a field near the Klamath Falls Airport.

The privately owned aircraft a 1948 Stinson 108-3 was operated by Clayton DARR of Anchorage, Alaska. After taking off from the Klamath Falls Airport the aircraft experienced engine problems caused DARR put the aircraft in a field near the 10200 block of Homedale Road at approximately 1:14 PM.

Deputies responded to assist the pilot and the single passenger. No injuries were reported. The aircraft suffered minor damaged due to being landed in the field. No reports of property damage from the property owners were received.

The Sheriff’s Office is assisting the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) with the investigation and whether or not the incident is going to be classified as a crash.

Disney Recalls the Forky 11” Plush Toy Due to Choking Hazard


“I’m trash!” Forky says as he tries to hurl himself into the garbage during Disney’s “Toy Story 4.” His repeated attempts are one of the funniest parts of the movie.

This in-real-life Forky news isn’t a joke, though.

Disney issued a voluntary recall of its plush Forky toy Monday. The Consumer Products Safety Commission reported the googly eyes can detach and present a choking hazard to children younger than 3.

About 80,000 of the plush toys were sold in the U.S. The 11-inch dolls are further identifiable by pose able arms and a rainbow icon on top of one of the toy’s foot.

Plush Forky was sold at Disney Stores, Disney Theme Parks, and through the Disney store on Amazon Marketplace from April to June for about $20.

Consumers should immediately take the recalled toy away from children and return it, said the Consumer Products Safety Commission. Disney said customers can get a full refund by visiting any North America Disney Store or Disney Theme Parks store, calling 866-537-7649, or emailing

Small Plane Lands On Beach Near Newport



On July 8, 2019 at 5:10 PM, Oregon State Police and emergency personnel responded to a plane crash on the beach near South Beach State Park. The pilot and his two passengers were transported to the local hospital with minor injuries.

The Oregon State Police is continuing with the investigation and more information will be released as soon as possible.


ODOT Reports Extended Closure for HWY 140 West MVA

Police are investigating a major injury MVA on Highway 140 West. An extended closure with no detour is expected.

ODOT: Central Ore.: OR140W (Lake of the Woods Highway) blocked in both directions 22 miles west of Odessa due to crash. Major injuries. ANTICIPATE EXTENSIVE CLOSURE. No detour at this time.

The crash is near Milepost 24. Updates available on

Update: we have a report from a source that this was reported to be a fatal MVA. However this has not yet been confirmed by OSP. We know it is confirmed as a major injury accident at this point. Once we get more information we will update.

Smokey Bear license plates available Aug. 1 in Oregon


SALEM – The Keep Oregon Green Association Smokey Bear vehicle license plate will be available for Oregon passenger vehicles starting Aug. 1.

The plate is only for passenger vehicles titled and registered in Oregon. DMV cannot accept or process applications received before Aug. 1.

In addition to regular title, registration and plate manufacturing fees, the Smokey Bear plate has a $40 surcharge due when you first order the plate and at each registration renewal. The surcharge is the same amount for four-year or two-year registration periods.

Customers who purchased a prepaid voucher may submit that with their application in lieu of the surcharge. The voucher may only be used once. The Keep Oregon Green Association was required to sell at least 3,000 vouchers before DMV could start implementation of the Smokey Bear license plate. Surcharge funds will go to the Keep Oregon Green Association. For more information on the association, visit

Custom (vanity) and Amateur Radio Operator (HAM radio) versions will be available on the Smokey Bear plate. DMV cannot reserve specific number-letter configurations for license plates. Also, DMV does not sell “sample” versions of license plates.

People can apply for the plates by mail, at DMV field offices, online or through licensed vehicle dealers when they purchase a car. Customers cannot apply for a Smokey Bear plate online if they are submitting a pre-paid voucher. Customers cannot replace vehicle plates through DEQ emissions testing stations (emissions tests are required only in parts of the Portland and Medford metropolitan areas).

The cost of a set of plates depends upon when and how a vehicle owner applies for a new set. Here are two common scenarios:

  1. Plates ordered within 120 days before a vehicle’s stickers expire:
  • Smokey Bear surcharge: $40 (also paid at every renewal) or a pre-paid voucher
  • Plate fee: $24.50 for the pair
  • Plate replacement fee: $5
  • Registration renewal: $112 (Multnomah County residents add $38; Washington County residents add $60)
  • Total without a voucher: $181.50 ($219.50 in Multnomah County; $241.50 in Washington County)
  • Total with a pre-paid voucher: $141.50 ($179.50 in Multnomah County; $201.50 in Washington County)
  1. Plates ordered more than 120 days before a vehicle’s stickers expire:
  • Smokey Bear surcharge: $40 (also paid at every two-year renewal) or a pre-paid voucher
  • Plate fee: $24.50 for the pair
  • Plate replacement fee: $10
  • Total without a voucher: $74.50
  • Total with a pre-paid voucher: $34.50

People who purchase a new or used vehicle from a licensed dealer may order Smokey Bear plates as part of the car-buying process and provide a pre-paid voucher to the dealer if they have one. Dealers file title and registration applications with DMV on behalf of car buyers. When buying a car, there are charges in addition to those listed above, such as title fees and dealer processing charges.

To order new plates from DMV more than 120 days before a vehicle’s stickers expire, customers need to fill out an Application for Registration, Renewal, Replacement or Transfer of Plates and/or Stickers, Form 268. Customers can get this form at their local DMV office to apply for the plate in person, or they can save a trip to DMV by downloading it at and apply online or by mailing in the application and fees.

Play Structure Closure – Kit Carson Park


KLAMATH FALLS, OR, July 8, 2019 – On Wednesday evening, Kit Carson Nature Play area will be closed so the wooden structures can be sealed. The work is being performed by a group of volunteers to help preserve the structures in the Nature Play. Temporary chain link fencing will start to be installed on Tuesday, July 9th and will remain in place until sealant has cured Friday afternoon on July 12th.

M7.1 Large Quake Strikes Southern California Again.


A new and very powerful earthquake has just impacted southern California.

The quake was centered near Ridgecrest, California. Early reports are that it was close to a 7.1

Moments after the quake, the lights in our house here in Klamath Falls swung back and forth indicating slight movement here.

This is a developing event. Unknown on damage reports yet.

Three Men From Klamath Falls Survive Boat Explosion At Shasta Lake Yesterday


According to the Redding Searchlight, 3 people from Klamath Falls were literally blown out of their boat by an explosion after refueling. The incident happened yesterday. One of the men says he was lifted 15 feet in the air! The boat was a 1985 custom built.

Read the full article here:

Magnitude 6.6 quake hits Southern California

A series of quakes have shaken Southern California today and reports are coming in of aftershocks. The quakes have been felt in Los Angeles. No reports of damage yet.

There have also been four more smaller quakes observed off the Oregon Coast yesterday as earthquake activity continues along the US West Coast.

Earthquake Mode Incident 07/04/2019 INC#0470

Earthquake Mode Incident; INC#0470; 10:39AM; 200 Rfs;; Downtown; Due to a (reported) 6.6 magnitude earthquake centered in the Mojave Desert, the LAFD is now in earthquake mode;All 106 fire stations are out conducting a strategic survey of their districts to determine if any damage exists;Once this process is complete, an overall assessment of the impact in the City of Los Angeles will be compiled by Headquarters;Please do not call 9-1-1 unless there are injuries or dangerous conditions to report;Residents are reminded of the potential of aftershocks and to Drop, Cover and Hold-On;An additional alert will be issued once Earthquake Mode is complete.

Local Construction Flagger Breaks Hip While Avoiding Being Struck By Vehicle In HWY 97 Construction Zone

A Highway 97 Construction Flagger Broke His Hip Yesterday Getting Out Of The Way Of A Vehicle That Disregarded Warning Signs To Slow Down

A driver of a sedan drove into the construction zone near mile post 279 on Highway 97 and nearly hit a flagger according to reports.

The flagger James McCoy from Tulelake broke his hip while taking evasive action to avoid being hit.

The incident occurred about 4:30am yesterday morning. Klamath County Fire District #1 and OSP responded to the construction zone and an OSP trooper issued the driver multiple citations. The flagger was treated by paramedics.

Cited Driver: MAIRS, JENESSA LOUISE F 40 BEND Oregon.

With a recent fatal construction zone accident this is yet another reminder for drivers to obey signs and slow down when entering construction zones.

We covered this and other incidents live in our breaking news app.

Oregon State Police Make Arrest For Fatal Hit And Run Crash – KLAMATH COUNTY



Alizabeth Witheril (20) of Klamath Falls

On Tuesday, July 2, 2019, a tip led Oregon State Police Troopers to a residence in Klamath Falls.  At the residence Troopers located a 2002 Hyundai Santa Fe that is believed to be the vehicle that struck and killed Mr. Rittenhouse on June 15, 2019.

Troopers identified Alizabeth Witheril (20) of Klamath Falls as the driver of the vehicle that struck Mr. Rittenhouse.  She was arrested for Failure to Perform Duties of Driver to Injured Persons (Hit and Run) and Tampering with Physical Evidence.

Blake Hooke (18) of Klamath Falls was arrested for Tampering with Physical Evidence.

Oregon State Police thanks the public for their assistance in this investigation.


The Oregon State Police is continuing the investigation into the fatal hit and run crash which occurred on Saturday, June 15, 2019. OSP is providing the attached photo, of a piece of the suspect vehicle, in hopes that someone will recognize the piece or damage to the front bumper area of a vehicle they are familiar with.

Contact the Oregon State Police by dialing *OSP or  541-883-5711.


On Saturday, June 15, 2019, at approximately 3:47 AM, Klamath County 911 received a call of a man found in the middle of South 6th Street at the intersection with Gary Street.

Klamath County Fire District 1 responded to assist the man, who was later identified as Henry Rittenhouse, age 36, of Klamath Falls; however, he was pronounced deceased at the scene.

On scene investigation determined that Mr. Rittenhouse had been struck by a vehicle that left the scene.  The suspect vehicle is gray in color; however, there are no additional descriptors of the vehicle that struck Mr. Rittenhouse at this time.

The Oregon State Police was assisted at the scene by the Klamath Falls Police Department, the Klamath County Sheriff’s Office, Klamath County Fire District 1, and ODOT.

Any one with information on this incident, or with information on the suspect vehicle, is asked to call Oregon State Police Dispatch at *OSP or  541-883-5711.

Alizabeth Witheril Charge Information;

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