Wednesday, 17 July 2024


SACRAMENTO – A new report on the plight of salmon and trout in California points to the need for immediate action, says the North Coast's state senator. {sidebar id=109}

The report, “SOS: California's Native Fish Crisis,” was written by Dr. Peter Moyle of the University of California, Davis – a renowned expert on California’s water systems and the fish that inhabit them – and released by California Trout Nov. 18.

It's the first-ever comprehensive report chronicling the status of each of California’s native fish species – salmon, steelhead and trout.

Moyle's findings are startling. He estimates that 65 percent of native salmon, steelhead and trout species may be extinct within 100 years.

He writes that the state’s native salmonids are in unprecedented decline and are teetering towards the brink of extinction – an alarm bell that signals the deteriorating health of the state’s rivers and streams that provide drinking water to millions of Californians.

“The fish don’t lie,” said Moyle. “The story they tell is that California’s environment is unraveling. Their demise is symptomatic of a much larger water crisis that, unless addressed, will severely impact every Californian.”

Sen. Patricia Wiggins (D-Santa Rosa), chair of the California Legislature’s Joint Committee on Fisheries and Aquaculture, said that Moyle's findings “mean that unless we make immediate, real changes to protect the environmental health of our rivers, streams and oceans, wild salmon as we know it will disappear from our dinner plates.”

“It wasn’t too long ago that salmon flourished throughout Northern and Central California. In just one generation we have lost significant salmon and steelhead runs in the Russian, the Eel and the Klamath rivers, as well as rivers in the Central Valley,” said Wiggins. “Our entire salmon fishing season was shut down last year. This is creating economic disasters for fishermen and the sport-fishing industry. Emergency relief funding will only last so long, and we cannot afford for fishing communities to lose their way of life.”

Moyle's report cites a number of key stressors on California’s native fish populations, many of which could be addressed through improved policy planning and better water and land management. Dams, agricultural and grazing practices, development, mining, railroads, logging, some recreational uses, illegal harvesting of native fish, reliance on fish hatcheries, and invasive species have all played a role in driving these species to the brink of extinction.

Global warming has perhaps played the most significant role in the alarming drop in numbers for many of these fish, as salmonids are particularly sensitive to changes in water temperature and rapidly shifting ocean conditions affect those that migrate between rivers and the ocean.

Thirty-two native fish taxa – species, subspecies, Evolutionary Significant Units, and Distinct Population Segments – are evaluated in the report. Each type of fish was evaluated according to the same criteria and given a score that indicates its likelihood of long-term survival under current conditions. A score of “one” indicates the species is “highly vulnerable to extinction in native range in the next 50 years” and a score of “four” or “five” was reserved for species with no extinction risk and expanding populations.

Of the 32 taxa analyzed in the report, one is extinct in California and an additional fourteen are listed as state and/or federally threatened or endangered. Pink and chum salmon, southern steelhead, and coho salmon face the greatest immediate threat of extinction.

Other species racing against the clock for survival include both summer and winter runs of the Northern California Coast steelhead; Central Valley, South/Central California Coast and Central Coast steelhead; Little Kern golden, Lahontan cutthroat, and Paiute cutthroat trout; and California Coast, Sacramento winter run, and Central Valley spring run Chinook salmon.

The report finds that identifying new and innovative funding streams for the state Department of Fish and Game (DFG) would allow the department to be a more effective steward of the state’s fishery resources. It also argues vigorously for a revitalized and strengthened DFG that would enable it to fulfill its role as chief guardian of California’s wild and native salmon, steelhead, and trout by partnering with local communities to protect regional fish populations and their habitats.

And it calls for immediate action on salmon, steelhead and trout recovery needs, such as addressing known challenges on the Shasta River and Trinity Rivers and continuing efforts to protect ground and surface water resources at the local and state levels.

Ongoing research and restoration efforts have shown that when flows are reinstated, migration barriers removed, and cool, clean, abundant water provided, our native fish show signs of recovery.

“This report is an important resource for anyone interested in protecting and restoring California’s magnificent native fish,” said CalTrout Executive Director Brian Stranko. “From local watershed groups working in communities, to the highest levels of state and federal governments, SOS: California’s Native Fish in Crisis provides the information, the roadmap, and the guidance for affecting change for California’s fish and the habitat that supports them.”

Last year, Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger signed Wiggins' bill, SB 562, which supports salmon monitoring and restoration with nearly $5.3 million in funding. Wiggins said the money may enable California to secure up to $20 million in federal matching funds, which will go to basic science and the repair of specific problems on creeks and rivers.

While it's an important investment, Wiggins said more is needed.

“In January I will bring to the Legislature a package of bills to save our salmon,” she said. “I will need cooperation from fishermen, farmers, water users, the tribes, power companies, the governor’s office and my colleagues in the Legislature to pass these measures.”

She added, “California Trout calls the findings an ‘alarm bell that signals the deteriorating health of the state’s rivers and streams that provide drinking water to millions of Californians.’ They stress that water unfit for fish is a sign of water unfit for people. No less than a full recovery is necessary for our fishing and sport-fishing economy, for our responsibility to the species, and for great-tasting, healthy wild salmon – a continuing California tradition.”



CLEARLAKE OAKS – Deputies on Wednesday night searched for two suspects believed to have been involved in a shooting.

A black male adult was reportedly shot in the neck at 8:18 p.m. at a residence in the 12000 block of Second Street in Clearlake Oaks, according to reports from the scene.

Witnesses reported seeing two black men, one of whom was in possession of a handgun.

The men were seen heading south toward the Keys area. A home on Lakeland was later reported to have possibly been the site of a break-in.

At least five deputies were on scene, along with a rescue unit and battalion chief from Northshore Fire's Clearlake Oaks station.

REACH Air Ambulance transported the victim from the scene.

No arrests were reported as of early Thursday morning.

Correspondent Harold LaBonte contributed to this report.

E-mail Elizabeth Larson at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..


LAKE COUNTY, Calif. – A Lucerne man believed to have been responsible for numerous burglaries and several more attempted break-ins over the last month has been arrested.

Raymon Narvaes, 25, was arrested Sunday evening after being found in a vehicle with a trunk filled with stolen property, according to Capt. James Bauman of the Lake County Sheriff's Office.

Bauman said that, during the first two weeks of November, the sheriff’s office responded to and investigated an inordinate number of residential burglaries in the north Lakeport area.

A total of 24 burglaries and seven attempted burglaries have been reported in the west and Northshore communities of Clear Lake since the beginning of the month, said Bauman.

He said seven burglaries and two attempted burglaries that included two stolen vehicles were reported at several different mobile home parks in that area. Five other homes in the area of Lakeshore Boulevard north of the city also were burglarized.

The burglaries began to extend to the communities of Nice and Lucerne on the Northshore of Clear Lake, said Bauman.

As recent as Monday, 12 additional burglaries and four additional attempted burglaries had been reported in those areas, he said. Most recently, the Lakeshore Boat and Dry Storage on Lakeshore Boulevard north of Lakeport and the Clear Lake Boat and Storage on Soda Bay Road south of Lakeport had also reported break-ins to five of their storage units.

At the same time, sheriff's patrol and detective branches began to develop connections between the burglaries, Bauman said.

At about 6:15 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 23, an observant deputy patrolling Lucerne saw a maroon Pontiac run a stop sign on 14th Avenue, Bauman said.

The vehicle was stopped and the occupants were identified as 55-year-old Fred Ralph Pearl of Nice and Narvaes, who already had been a person of interest in the rash of burglaries throughout the month, according to Bauman.

While the deputy was detaining Pearl and Narvaes, Bauman said Narvaes admitted to being a convicted felon and having a gun in the trunk of the car.

Bauman said when the deputy went to retrieve the weapon, he found the trunk also contained several bags containing numerous items of jewelry, electronics, credit cards, keys and other items suspected to be stolen.

Some of the items were tracked back to a resident of the Meadow Point Mobile Home Park on Highway 20 in Upper Lake, said Bauman. When the woman was contacted and shown the property recovered from the car stop, she had not realized she had been the victim of yet another burglary.

Bauman said Narvaes, whose profession is listed as chef on his booking sheet, was arrested on felony charges of possessing stolen property, being a felon in possession of a firearm and misdemeanor possession of drug paraphernalia. Narvaes was subsequently booked at the Lake County Jail with bail set at $250,000 bail.

Pearl was released at the scene of the traffic stop as Narvaes claimed responsibility for all the stolen property and Pearl had no evident connection to the property, said Bauman.

On Monday, as sheriff's detectives questioned Narvaes at the county jail about the recent rash of burglaries, he reportedly admitted to committing a number of the crimes, including one of the related vehicle thefts, said Bauman. Narvaes also reportedly agreed to accompany investigators to point out the homes he had burglarized.

By the end of Monday, Bauman said Narvaes confirmed burglarizing four of the homes at the Perk’s and Sterling Shore Mobile Parks in north Lakeport, one of the homes at the Castlewood Estates Mobile Home Park in Nice, and two other homes in Lakeport and Nice.

While detectives are not convinced Narvaes has admitted to all the burglaries he has actually committed, Bauman said it can't be concluded that he is solely responsible for the recent rash of property crimes.

Bauman said many of the burglary cases remain pending further investigation and, as always, homeowners should continue to be cognizant of the security of their homes and those of their neighbors.

Inside the Lakeport city limits, a spate of robberies targeting mobile home parks also have occurred this month, as Lake County News has reported. Lakeport Police officials continue to investigate those break-ins, some of which appear to be related to each other.

Bauman said it's a possibility that the burglaries in the city and the county could be related, but detectives haven't yet reached that conclusion.

E-mail Elizabeth Larson at [email protected].



A new kindergarten bike track at Riviera Elementary School was made possible through the hard work and generosity of local residents and businesses. Courtesy photo.


KELSEYVILLE – Riviera Elementary School recently held a ribbon cutting ceremony for its new kindergarten tricycle track.

During the 2006 and 2007 school years, the Riviera Parent Teacher Organization decided to make it a top priority to have a tricycle track put in next to the kindergarten playground.

After many months of planning, the group was able to break ground on the track this past August.

The hard work and generosity of many people made the track possible.

Those generous folks included Ayman Masri, who volunteered to bring in the machinery he needed to dig the track. Chris and Connie Biller, owners of Biller Construction Inc., donated their time to finish the project.

Other community members and businesses who stepped up to support the track project through donations, discounted materials and time include Clearlake Lava Inc., Kelseyville Lumber, KSO Construction, Four Corners, Tom Biller, Fred Hanson and Jim Schleif.

The result was a gift to the school's children that wouldn't have been possible otherwise.



Children help cut the ribbon for the track at the recent ribbon cutting event. Courtesy photo.




Ground was broken on the track in August, and work immediately got under way to build it. Courtesy photo.



UKIAH – Officials are investigating the cause of a collision earlier this week involving a Lake Transit bus.

The California Highway Patrol's Ukiah office reported that the crash occurred at 1:10 p.m. Tuesday on Hensley Creek Road near Ukiah.

Bus driver Ruby Joann Scribner, 59, of Clearlake was driving the 2003 Freightliner passenger bus eastbound at approximately 30 miles per hours in a 35-mile-per-hour zone when the crash took place, the CHP reported.

The bus suffered a “mechanical failure” with its steering control, according to the CHP. That caused the bus to veer to the right and collide with a telephone pole guide wire.

CHP said the bus came to rest facing north and blocking the westbound lane.

Scribner suffered no injuries, and neither did passengers Marty Cook of Lodi or Tonya White Rock of Upper Lake. The CHP said that another customer, Mara Isabec Aguilar of Upper Lake, complained of pain.

The collision's cause is still under investigation, the CHP noted in its report.

Lake Transit Manager Mark Wall said he couldn't confirm if the crash was caused by a mechanical failure. He added that the bus suffered minor damage.

Paratransit Services of Bremerton, Wash., holds the contract to operate the Lake Transit.

Wanda Gray, operations manager for Lake Transit, referred questions on the collision to Paratransit's corporate office, which did not return a Wednesday call.

E-mail Elizabeth Larson at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..


LAKE COUNTY – A man convicted of a 1995 murder has been denied parole in his first hearing before the Board of Prison Terms.

Fred Gene Stillman, 50, had his parole hearing on Nov. 19 at Avenal State Prison in Kings County, according to former Lake County District Attorney Gary Luck, who is now working as a part-time deputy district attorney.

Luck, who prosecuted the case before he was elected district attorney, attended the parole hearing to argue against Stillman's release from state prison.

In November 1995 Stillman was convicted by a jury of second-degree murder and use of a deadly weapon in the murder of Bart Jackman earlier that same year, Luck said.

Stillman was found guilty of slaying Jackman outside of the Landmark Lounge in Clearlake, said Luck.

Stillman, his wife Luanne and daughter Jennifer all participated in the crime. Luanne Stillman was found guilty by the same jury that convicted her husband of assault with a deadly weapon. Jennifer Stillman, who was 16 years old at the time of the crime, was tried as a juvenile.

Fred Stillman received an indeterminate term of 16 years to life, according to Luck. During the same trial, Stillman also was convicted of assault with a deadly weapon on Michael Betts and was sentenced to an additional four-year term.

Luck said Stillman first had to serve two years of the four-year term before starting his life sentence on the murder conviction.

Based on his sentence, Stillman first became eligible for parole on Nov. 22, 2009. Luck said a parole hearing is generally conducted at least one year prior to the anticipated parole release date.

At his first hearing, Stillman's parole was denied, said Luck.

The commissioners denied parole, Luck said, citing Stillman’s lack of viable parole plans, insufficient participation in alcohol and substance abuse treatment, and lack of progress in completing any educational goals.

Luck said their decision also was impacted by the fact that Stillman was involved in several fights while in prison which would cause him to still present an unreasonable risk to public safety.

In concluding the hearing, the commissioners informed Stillman that he must make significant changes in his behavior and progress in completing his educational goals during the next five years if he hopes to get a parole release date at his next hearing, according to Luck.

The commissioners for the Board of Prison terms extended the time until Mr. Stillman’s next parole hearing for a five-year period. Luck said this means Stillman must serve another full five years in prison before he is again eligible to have a parole hearing.


LAKE COUNTY – A motorcyclist received minor injuries in a collision that took place Saturday evening.

The crash occurred on Gaddy Lane in front of the post office just after 6:30 p.m., according to a report from the California Highway Patrol.

A UHaul truck collided with the motorcycle, the CHP reported.

A witness who reported the crash stated that it looked bad, with the rider down and the vehicles blocking the roadway.

The motorcyclist, whose name was not available Saturday, ended up receiving minor injuries.

Two other collisions reported during the day – a two-vehicle crash on Soda Bay Road in Lakeport shortly before 7:30 p.m. and one at about 10:17 p.m. on Highland Avenue and Roland Drive in Lucerne – resulted in no injuries, the CHP reported.

E-mail Elizabeth Larson at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..


LAKE COUNTY – Lake County artist Renee Geare will hold a sneak preview showing of her oil painting project, 100 “Views of Mount Konocti,” at Lake County Wine Studio in Upper Lake throughout the month of December as part of a benefit to support the county's purchase of more than 1,500 acres on the mountain.

The show will open on Friday, Dec. 5, with refreshments and live entertainment from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. The studio also will have live entertainment on Saturday, Dec. 6, from 2 p.m. to 6 p.m.

A proud and active member of the California Art Club, Oil Painters of America, Lake County Arts Council, and the Konocti Plein Air Painters, Geare has studied art privately and in small groups with renowned artists Rafael Maniago, Margot Lennartz, and Junn Roca. She is most influenced by Edgar Payne and the early California impressionists.

Geare’s passionate expressions of life in Lake County are of museum-quality. One of her paintings hangs in the Naval Historical Museum in Washington D.C.

The project theme coincides with the current efforts by Lake County to acquire 1,520 acres on top of Mount Konocti. The acquisition is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity, encompassing all four peaks, and putting much of the mountain into public hands for perpetuity. The goal is to raise $2.6 million by September 2009.

In enthusiastic support of the project, Geare and Lake County Wine Studio will donate a 20 percent portion of the sales to help preserve Mount Konocti as open space. Informative materials about the acquisition effort will be available at the Studio and also can be seen online at

Live entertainment will be provided by Blue Collar, a band comprised of Lake County musicians Carl Stewart on vocals and guitar, Bill Bordisso on accordion and saxophone, and Joe Geare on stand-up bass.

Wine tasting and paired appetizers will be available both days for $5 with a portion of proceeds donated by Lake County Wine Studio toward the acquisition of Mount Konocti.

Friday’s event will feature Zoom Wines’ 2006 “Top of Konocti” Zinfandel with winemaker, Matt Hughes. The organic zinfandel grapes for this release are from the Fowler vineyard on top of Mount Konocti.

Saturday will feature Sol Rouge’s Lake County wines with winemaker, Bryan Kane. Highlights will be the 2007 Gypsy Blanc and 2006 Syrah, with the 2007 Rosé, 2006 Gypsy, 2006 Grenache, and 2006 Cabernet also available. Sol Rouge is nestled on base slopes of Mount Konocti.

Lake County Wine Studio is located on the corner of First and Main Streets in historic Upper Lake, across from the famous Tallman Hotel and Blue Wing Saloon and Café.

For more information, call Susan Feiler at 293-8752 or 275-8030.


LAKEPORT – A Lakeport man has lost his appeal of a conviction handed down earlier this year for attacking and stabbing a man during a March 2007 gang attack.

On Monday, First Appellate Court justices agreed unanimously in a three-page decision to uphold the 15-years-to-life sentence that Ricardo Tapia Muniz, now 20, received from visiting Judge Galen Hathaway on May 2.

Muniz was prosecuted for stabbing and critically injuring then-19-year-old Clearlake Oaks resident Alex Larranaga near Library Park on March 16, 2007.

The prosecution had alleged that Muniz and four fellow defendants had attacked Larranaga – who had just emerged from a nearby restaurant where he had dinner with his family – because they believed his brother was a rival gang member and thought he had "flashed" gang signs at them.

In an agreement with the District Attorney's Office, Muniz pleaded guilty to aggravated mayhem and an enhancement that he committed the crime for the benefit of a criminal street gang. In exchange for the pleas, an attempted murder charge and a special allegation of causing great bodily injury were dismissed, according to court documents.

On May 28, Muniz filed his appeal, in which his attorney raised no specific issues with the prosecution but asked for an independent review of the case record, the justices noted in their decision.

"We discern no error in the sentencing," wrote Justice Ignazio Ruvolo. "The refusal to grant probation, and the sentencing choices made by the trial court were consistent with applicable law, supported by substantial evidence, and were well within the discretion of the trial court."

Justice Ruvolo added that the restitution fines and penalties amounting to $2,000 imposed against Muniz were supported by the law and facts, and that Muniz was represented by an attorney at all times.

The District Attorney's Office said in May that the sentence requires that Muniz serve a minimum of 15 years before he is eligible for parole.

Muniz, according to court documents, is serving his sentence at San Quentin State Prison.

E-mail Elizabeth Larson at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..


LAKE COUNTY – The number of people without work in Lake County, California and the nation continued to rise in October, according to the latest report on unemployment statistics.

Lake County's unemployment rate climbed to 11.2 percent for October, according to the Employment Development Department (EDD).

That's up from 10 percent unemployment in September, and a big increase from the October 2007 rate of 7.9 percent, as Lake County News has reported.

Statewide, unemployment was at 8.2 percent, according to the EDD, up from 7.7 percent in September and 5.7 percent in October 2007.

The U.S. unemployment rate also increased in October to 6.5 percent, the EDD reported.

October's unemployment rate ranks Lake at No. 50 among California's 58 counties, based on EDD statistics.

Of the county's 26,480-person workforce, 2,950 people were out of work in October.

The lowest unemployment in the state was found in Marin County, with 4.9 percent unemployment.

One of Lake's neighboring counties, Napa, ranked No. 2 for lowest unemployment, with 5.4 percent, while Sonoma ranked No. 7 with 6.2 percent.

Other neighboring counties included Mendocino, No. 10, 6.7 percent; Yolo, No. 23, 7.9 percent; Glenn, No. 39, 9.4 percent; and Colusa, No. 53, 11.8 percent.

A federal survey referred to in the EDD's report estimates the number of Californians holding jobs in October was 17,053,000, a decrease of 14,000 from September, and down 162,000 from the employment total in October of last year. A survey of California businesses showed a decrease of 101,300 jobs between October 2007 and October 2008.

“Our economy continues to be difficult, especially for people who have lost their jobs or who have begun looking for one. As our state unemployment rate rises, my administration continues to work hard to generate jobs and help re-train people who have lost jobs in our hard-hit industries,” Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger said.

Through the Labor and Workforce Development Agency, $33 million in job training funds have been allocated to military veterans and to regions of the state hardest hit by the tough financial times, Schwarzenegger said. The grant funding is meant to provide education, training, and job placement assistance for thousands of residents across the state.

Schwarzenegger said the state's Unemployment Insurance Fund needs to be fixed in order to keep it solvent, and with current pressures it's now “racing toward the red.” He has a plan in place to address the problems which the Legislature didn't pass earlier this week.

Last week, President George W. Bush signed a bill that extends unemployment benefits seven weeks. That's in addition to a 13-week extension that the EDD said was part of federal legislation enacted in June, which helps workers who have exhausted their regular unemployment insurance benefits.

The federal legislation also gave an additional 13-week extension to workers in high unemployment states such as California. So, in total, the state's workers have up to 33 weeks of extended benefits, according to the EDD.

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It would take more than 240 years from the first Thanksgiving in Plymouth in 1621 before Thanksgiving was regularly celebrated as a national holiday. Beginning with George Washington, the early US presidents regularly issued proclamations calling for separate national days of thanksgiving. However, it was during the Civil War and Abraham Lincoln's presidency that the holiday began to be marked annually. The following address is Lincoln's Oct. 3, 1863, proclamation, which set the stage for the holiday to begin the following month.

The year that is drawing towards its close, has been filled with the blessings of fruitful fields and healthful skies. To these bounties, which are so constantly enjoyed that we are prone to forget the source from which they come, others have been added, which are of so extraordinary a nature, that they cannot fail to penetrate and soften even the heart which is habitually insensible to the ever watchful providence of Almighty God. In the midst of a civil war of unequalled magnitude and severity, which has sometimes seemed to foreign States to invite and to provoke their aggression, peace has been preserved with all nations, order has been maintained, the laws have been respected and obeyed, and harmony has prevailed everywhere except in the theatre of military conflict; while that theatre has been greatly contracted by the advancing armies and navies of the Union. Needful diversions of wealth and of strength from the fields of peaceful industry to the national defense, have not arrested the plough, the shuttle, or the ship; the axe had enlarged the borders of our settlements, and the mines, as well of iron and coal as of the precious metals, have yielded even more abundantly than heretofore.

Population has steadily increased, notwithstanding the waste that has been made in the camp, the siege and the battle-field; and the country, rejoicing in the consciousness of augmented strength and vigor, is permitted to expect continuance of years with large increase of freedom.

No human counsel hath devised nor hath any mortal hand worked out these great things. They are the gracious gifts of the Most High God, who, while dealing with us in anger for our sins, hath nevertheless remembered mercy.

It has seemed to me fit and proper that they should be solemnly, reverently and gratefully acknowledged as with one heart and voice by the whole American People. I do therefore invite my fellow citizens in every part of the United States, and also those who are at sea and those who are sojourning in foreign lands, to set apart and observe the last Thursday of November next, as a day of Thanksgiving and Praise to our beneficent Father who dwelleth in the Heavens. And I recommend to them that while offering up the ascriptions justly due to Him for such singular deliverances and blessings, they do also, with humble penitence for our national perverseness and disobedience, commend to his tender care all those who have become widows, orphans, mourners or sufferers in the lamentable civil strife in which we are unavoidably engaged, and fervently implore the interposition of the Almighty Hand to heal the wounds of the nation and to restore it as soon as may be consistent with the Divine purposes to the full enjoyment of peace, harmony, tranquility and Union.

In testimony whereof, I have hereunto set my hand and caused the Seal of the United States to be affixed.

Done at the City of Washington, this Third day of October, in the year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and sixty-three, and of the Independence of the Unites States the Eighty-eighth.

By the President: Abraham Lincoln

William H. Seward, Secretary of State


LAKE COUNTY – The California Highway Patrol (CHP) reminds motorists to plan ahead this holiday and help make the state’s roads a safer place.

“Thanksgiving always produces a high volume of traffic; therefore, the CHP intends to provide as much visibility as possible in order to ensure a safe holiday weekend,” said CHP Lt. Mark Loveless, commander of the Clear Lake Area office.

The official Thanksgiving holiday driving period begins at 6 p.m. Wednesday, Nov. 26, and continues through midnight on Sunday, Nov. 30. During this time the CHP will implement the Maximum Enforcement Period (MEP), putting every available officer on the road.

“Be well rested when you start and allow extra time in case of congested traffic,” said Loveless. “Drive safe, drive sober and wear your seat belt.”

In addition to busy roadways, inclement weather is another obstacle motorists may encounter. Rain, fog, wind and snow have been known to create not only frustrating, but hazardous conditions for drivers. Those traveling through the mountains should carry chains in their vehicle.

Last year, during the Thanksgiving MEP, 41 people died in 4,337 collisions that occurred in California. More than half of the vehicle occupants killed were involved in alcohol-related collisions.

“Thanksgiving is a time for us all to be thankful for what we have. If fewer people lose their lives on our roads and highways, I will have something else to be truly thankful for," said CHP Commissioner Joe Farrow.

Another sobering statistic, 1,628 people were arrested by CHP officers for driving under the influence last year over the Thanksgiving holiday; a nearly 2.5-percent decrease from the same time period the previous year.

The Thanksgiving MEP is also an Operation Combined Accident Reduction Effort (CARE) holiday. Operation CARE is a joint program of the nation’s highway patrols that promotes safe driving on interstate highways during holiday periods.

CARE highways in California include Interstates 80, 40, 15 (San Bernardino to the Nevada border) and 5 (Bakersfield north to the Oregon line).


Upcoming Calendar

07.18.2024 6:00 pm - 8:00 pm
Clearlake City Council
07.20.2024 10:00 am - 1:00 pm
Farmers' Market at the Mercantile
07.23.2024 10:00 am - 1:00 pm
Farmers' Market at Library Park
07.24.2024 7:00 pm - 8:00 pm
ReCoverCA Homebuyer Assistance Workshop
07.27.2024 10:00 am - 1:00 pm
Farmers' Market at the Mercantile
07.30.2024 10:00 am - 1:00 pm
Farmers' Market at Library Park
08.03.2024 10:00 am - 1:00 pm
Farmers' Market at the Mercantile
08.06.2024 10:00 am - 1:00 pm
Farmers' Market at Library Park
08.10.2024 10:00 am - 1:00 pm
Farmers' Market at the Mercantile
08.13.2024 10:00 am - 1:00 pm
Farmers' Market at Library Park

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