“BIRD HILL” Neighborhood Gathering (PLVC Emergency Management Event)

Port Ludlow Village Council – Emergency Management

Invites you to attend a special “BIRD HILL” Neighborhood Gathering Join with neighbors to discuss and plan your Bird Hill neighborhood strategies for helping each other in the event of a long-term emergency disaster.

Monday, October 22nd 6:00-8:00 PM Port Ludlow Beach Club

Emergency preparedness is a necessity for our area. Your input will be germane to the success of Bird Hill and our individual streets’ action plans.

We are STRONGER when we prepare TOGETHER! For questions, comments or to let us know you’ll be coming, email nbneighborspl@gmail.com.

 

NOTICE TO WATER SYSTEM USERS- TOTAL COLIFORM DETECTED AND TEMPORARY WATER SYSTEM CHLORINATION

NOTICE TO WATER SYSTEM USERS

COLIFORM MAXIMUM CONTAMINATE LEVEL (MCL) EXCEEDED – NON-ACUTE MCL AND TEMPORARY WATER SYSTEM CHLORINATION

Beginning Wednesday, October 10, 2018 we will be feeding a small amount of chlorine which will possibly become apparent at the customer taps.  This is being done as part of the investigation of a routine bacteriological sample testing positive for Total Coliform (negative for possible disease causing e-coli and fecal coliform)

AFFECTED AREA:  Service zone “B” is the area located east of Oak Bay Road. (See map on last page) This service zone originates at the well sites south east of Olympic Terrace 2 and supplies water to customers from the well sites North to Montgomery Court. The only Properties west of Oak Bay Road to receive water from these wells are the commercial development containing the Dental Office, Sound Bank and Coldwell Banker. The area is served by Wells 14 and 16 and Reservoirs C and D

THE REASON: OLYMPIC WATER & SEWER, INC. Water System, I.D. 68700L, located in Jefferson County submitted routine drinking water samples to a certified laboratory for the month of  September 2018 for total coliform analysis.  The sample was collected on September 25, 2018.

The test results indicated that there was Total Coliform bacteria present in the sample but no fecal or E. Coli.

The samples were taken from a routine sample station at 412 Camber Lane.  Because of the configuration of the water pipes, we are confident that the only properties potentially affected are in service zone area “B” as described above.

PRECAUTIONS:  Since only Total Coliform has been detected, there is no immediate health risk to our customers.  If an immediate health risk had existed, you would have been notified right away. However, as a precaution the Washington State Department of Health has recommend that if you are currently taking chemotherapy, undergoing kidney dialysis, or have an immune deficiency you may want boil  water. Total Coliforms are common in the environment and are generally not harmful themselves, however any indication of contamination is thoroughly investigated.

INVESTIGATION: The following investigation and follow up actions are being taken in consultation with Washington State Department of Health:

All of the wells and Teal lake reservoir that serves the area were tested for coliforms.  The samples from the wells and Teal Lake reservoir were negative. Samples were pulled at the 412 Camber Lane sample station and at homes near the sample station in accordance with the OWSI coliform monitoring plan. The only follow up sample to have coliform present was located at 412 Camber Lane. On October 4 a sample was collected at reservoir “C” at the top of Highland Drive (past the golf course pro shop) that tested positive. A negative sample was collected on October 5 at reservoir “C. Flushing and retesting have provided results that are indicating coliform results that were very inconsistent. Due to those inconsistent results chlorination is the next step in eliminating the coliform.

OWSI has retained HDR Consulting Engineers to guide OWSI through the process of determining the source of the coliform. Once the source has been identified OWSI will take appropriate actions to eliminate the risk of future events.

Summary of Samples and Lab Analysis:  (all negative for e-coli)

  • Initial samples on Camber Lane: Positive for Total Coliform
  • Follow up on samples on Camber Lane.: Positive for Total Coliform
  • Wells 14 and 16: Negative for all coliform
  • Sample at Reservoir C (Highland Drive): Positive for Total Coliform
  • Sample at Reservoir D (Teal Lake Rd.): Negative for Total Coliform

 While we continue our investigation we have decided that the most efficient way to cure the problem is through a light chlorination.   We will continue this for up to two weeks, or until all of our follow up samples show that the problem has been corrected.

While we strive to deliver the highest quality water possible to our customers, unfortunately situations such as this do occur periodically in a non-chlorinated system.  Thank you for your understanding and patience.  Please do not hesitate to call us with questions.

Sincerely,

Greg Rae
Manager
Olympic Water and Sewer Inc.
360-437-7898
Email:  owsi@portludlowassociates.com

Below is further information from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency regarding Total Coliform.

The following is mandatory language required by the Environmental Protection Agency in these situations.  .

 The United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) sets water standards and has determined that the presence of total coliforms is a possible health concern.  Total coliforms are common in the environment and are generally not harmful themselves.  The presence of these bacteria in drinking water, however, generally is a result of a problem with water treatment or the pipes which distribute the water, and indicates that the water may be contaminated with organisms that can cause disease.  Disease symptoms may include diarrhea, cramps, nausea, and possibly jaundice, and any associated headaches and fatigue.  These symptoms, however, are not just associated with the disease causing organisms in drinking water, but may also be caused by a number of other factors other than your drinking water.  EPA has set an enforceable drinking water standard for total coliforms to reduce the risk of these adverse health effects.  Drinking water which meets this standard is usually not associated with a health risk from disease-causing bacteria and should be considered

 

Service Zone B is the unshaded area of the map

TRAILS SEEKING VOLUNTEER

The Trails Committee is looking for someone who enjoys working to maintain our trails and who has the organizational skills to coordinate volunteer powered trail maintenance and improvement projects. The official name for this role is Maintenance Manager and there is an official description in our policy and procedure document.
If this sounds like something you would enjoy doing, please contact me thru the link below or come to the next Trails meeting at the Port Ludlow Fire Station at 9 am November 6.
Beth Ely
Trails Steward Coordinator

2018 YEAR END REVIEW

The Port Ludlow Village Council has had a busy and community-building year, from completing one new trail while maintaining others, working with Jefferson Healthcare to enhance the Port Ludlow Clinic’s exterior, hosting county political candidate forums, realizing substantial growth of the Emergency Management activities, holding the annual Newcomer Welcome Event and various Health & Wellness forums, and managing the Movie Night while developing our new logo and mission statement to reinvigorate our purpose to unify and improve our great community.

To all our committee chairs, generous contributors and volunteers, a huge debt of gratitude is owed to you for your commitment and generosity throughout the year.  We simply would not be the Port Ludlow we know and love without you. Following is a compilation of the goals, objectives and accomplishments of those who work so hard year-round to make our community a place to enjoy. An Honor Roll of the volunteers is included at the end of the review.

Administration— Maintain and update organizational and procedural policies.

Chair:  Tamra McDearmid

The Committee worked to update the Policy and Procedures consistent with the revised Articles and Bylaws.  In addition, they established new procedures for the election, which were tested for the 2018 election.  Both of these activities will be finalized and recommended for board approval in the near future.

CommunicationsProvide streamlined communications to share relevant community/area information and maintain contact with the community regarding PLVC activities through its website, email list as well as continued archiving of important documents.

Chair: Caleb Summerfelt

PLVC’s communication efforts were well received this year with the most commonly visited web pages being the Osprey Trail Progress and Emergency Management Information.  The information provided regarding the change in Jefferson County Property Tax process was particularly effective in March of this year.  As of September this year the PLVC website hosted 6,259 unique views with the most common inquiries going to HOA’s and CC&R’s, and information about Recycling.  Additionally, the PLVC Archive was moved to a more secure platform.

The newly implemented E-blast schedule has worked very well, whereby the community is notified two weeks prior to an upcoming event and a follow-up blast is sent two days prior to an event.  This has resulted in increased attendance at many of the PLVC sponsored community functions.

Community DevelopmentMaintain a relationship with the developer, the county and neighboring property owners.

Chairs: Dave McDearmid and Dave Jurca

The Community Development Committee transitioned this year with a change in leadership and committee members.  They continue to be committed to a proactive approach to identify and fulfill activities in support of the committee’s charter which is to: (1) maintain a relationship with the developer to keep lines of communications open to share important development activities with the community, assist with compliance to the Development Agreement and County regulations, address the feasibility of additional developments and/or enhancements the community desires, and address the “workings” of the MPR after the build-out is complete; (2) maintain a relationship with appropriate County officials to support the remaining build-out of the MPR, preserve and maintain the intent of the MPR after the Development Agreement, and address issues that may arise requiring the County’s intervention; and, (3) foster relationships with neighboring property owners, such as Olympic Resource Management, to address activities that may impact the MPR.

Dog ParkAn investigation into the possibility of a dog park within the Master Planned Resort of Port Ludlow. 

Co-chairs: Phyllis and Glenn Waldenberg

The committee members took an informal poll of residents, which showed that 70 per cent of the respondents would support a dog park.  Based on these results, the committee researched other dog parks in the area, investigated costs, and determined the specific costs, requirements and codes.  They then met with the representative from Port Ludlow Associates (PLA) to determine a site for the park. PLA indicated that they would be willing to donate space at the corner of Marina Drive and Oak Bay Drive as part of a future development.

The committee drew up plans for the park along with cost estimates, which were presented to the Homeowner’s Associations surrounding the tentative site.  Unfortunately, the surrounding HOA’s and neighborhoods determined that the site was not appropriate for that use and voted against the proposal.

The committee is open to investigate other sights within the MPR and hopes to develop a dog park at some future date.  

Emergency ManagementEstablish and maintain a disaster based emergency plan for Port Ludlow working with county and state agencies.

Chair: Danille Turissini

With a new motto, “We are stronger when we prepare together” Emergency Management was revitalized by the addition of participation from the Jefferson County Department of Emergency Management, a new Citizen Emergency Response Team (CERT) coordinator and a Disaster Airlift Response Team (DART) coordinator.  With these new team members the committee has expanded its already successful Block Captain program made up of neighborhood volunteers who will be the first to organize and coordinate help in the event of an emergency. In addition an initiative to encourage businesses to prepare a plan of action for the first 30 days has also been established.

All of these efforts were showcased at the Second Annual Emergency Management Fair held in June, which had over 100 attendees.  Many tasty and some not so tasty examples of emergency preparedness food were sampled.  In addition, attendees learned how to “camp in their homes” safely turn off utilities, effectively store water and food supplies, and try out the wide variety of emergency gadgets available for purchase.

Further efforts this year have included Red Cross First Aid classes, additional DART training and the October 18 Great Washington Shake Out earthquake simulation and communication event.

Health & Wellness Provide to the community Health and Wellness events sponsored by Jefferson Healthcare and others.

Co-chairs: Paul Hinton and Phyllis Waldenberg

This revitalized committee has partnered with Jefferson Healthcare to bring to Port Ludlow several first rate seminars facilitated by the doctors in residence.  They have presented in-depth information on such subjects as strokes, cardiovascular health and orthopedics to our community with an outlook to expanding the program in the coming year.

Holiday Lights A holiday tradition at the village square 

Chair: Dave McDearmid

The Holiday Lights tradition has brought a twinkle to our long winter nights and holiday season for many years.  The lights go up before Thanksgiving in order to be turned on for the holiday season, and remain up until the beginning of March thanks to the many volunteers who give of their time and energy to organize, test and install the lights.  Much appreciated is the work of WAVE Broadband who donate their crews and bucket trucks to help in the loftier elevations of the trees.  Fortunately this year, the weather cooperated and the installation was completed in record time.  Unfortunately, two more trees were lost due to storm damage and had been removed by the county.   There are now 16 of the original 24 trees planted years ago.

Fundraising efforts to support this endearing community activity were a great success.  Thanks to the many donors who gave generously to allow for payment of traffic control during installation as well as miscellaneous materials, light replacements and items damaged due to exposure in our Northwest winters. The committee looks forward to continuing the tradition of the holiday lights and adding a bit of sparkle to Port Ludlow’s Village Center.

MaritimeMonitor boating activity and provide a safe Port Ludlow Marina experience

Chair: Phil Otness

Port Ludlow can claim bragging rights on a beautiful setting for its Marina and boating facility and the committee has worked hard to continue to keep the area safe, inviting and friendly.  As a result of these efforts, Port Ludlow’s marina continues to host an increasing number of visitors each year.  The biggest challenge with the increase in tourism is the up tick in the use of standup paddleboards, kayaks, and other water transportation as well as the use of high-speed tenders which continue to be a safety problem, although most users are following the posted signs of 5 MPH.  A current project is to replace the entrance buoy, which will emphasize the speed limits, however, the expense is considerable with new Department of Natural Resources requirements.

Monitoring the illegal anchorage of boats in the Marina requires that a watchful eye as well as the authority to present the offenders with a letter explaining that after 30 days, the offending vessel must vacate the marina.  The committee has excelled at keeping the area in excellent shape while continuing to be as accommodating as possible.

Movie NightA community wide event inviting participation from outside Port Ludlow encouraging locals and tourists alike to enjoy an outdoor movie on the marina lawn.

Co-chairsTam McDearmid and Pat Page

The Village Council took over management of the Port Ludlow Free Movie Night after the previous organizers had determined we were best equipped to maintain the momentum of this extremely popular community event.

The movie selection was determined by the students of Chimacum Creek Primary School who overwhelmingly voted for WALL-E as their favorite.

Sponsorships were solicited from various businesses, which had supported the event previously as well as several new contributors.  The committee raised $5,400.  In addition, there was an advertising fund provided by the State of Washington in the amount of $3,900 which was used to it’s full advantage in spreading the word about our event on five separate ferry routes, on Facebook, a billboard in Poulsbo and banners and signs placed in Kitsap, Jefferson and Clallam counties.

The event hosted six food vendors and one flower vendor, lost and found/first aid station and a PLVC booth of movie themed novelty items for sale. There were also raffle items including a ukulele, television, tablet, birthday party basket, and Hood Canal boat cruise.

Despite the drizzle and light rain on the day of the event, the vendors arrived and set up shop with delicious food, flowers and toys.

The Jefferson County Chamber compiled the attendance numbers by county and we were happy to report that a total of 412 people attended the event including 23 from out of state and 17 from Canada, 6 from Mexico and 3 from Spain.

Roadway Safety Monitor Port Ludlow Roadways and make recommendations to the County for improved infrastructure, lighting and signage 

Chair: Steve Frenzl

This past year, the Roadway Safety Committee successfully worked with the county make several safety improvements on our roads.  After holding two public hearings at Port Ludlow’s Beach and Bay Clubs the committee determined several action items to be discussed with the County.  Subsequently, the installation of a streetlight on Paradise Bay Road at the entrance to the Bay Club was completed and the temporary traffic control speed monitors were set up on Paradise Bay Road.  Future projects will focus on the intersections adjacent to the Beach Club and Bay Club and the zone along Oak Bay Road where community trails cross the highway at numerous points.  

Trails & Natural ResourcesDevelop and maintain the trails and natural resources of the community and promote community awareness and appreciation of the established walking and biking trails. 

Chairs: John Fillers and Tim Rensema.

Every year the trails committee relies on its four sponsors, LMC, PLA PLVC, and SBCA for their equal donations, which makes it possible to fulfill their mission. Over 50 volunteers contribute many hours as trails stewards and workers on special projects.

This year, in addition to the regular mowing, weed whacking, clipping and downed tree removal activities, the group further developed and repaired three of the seventeen trails which total 26 plus miles of walking, hiking and biking opportunities.

Those three trails include Osprey, Interpretive/Ludlow Falls Loop and Picnic Point.  Osprey is the newest trail and quickly becoming a favorite.  Terraced steps and cleanup of the Native Plant Garden were undertaken in the Interpretive Trail and the Picnic Point Trail received a facelift, which eliminated the mud problem and now allows for a pleasant walk year round.

Other activities include the annual Scotch Broom Sweep, the cleaning of 54 birdhouses and the addition of new shelters, chain saw use training, and completion of the map of the trails.  Additionally, a long-range plan and organization, policy and procedures documents were approved to help the committee to work better toward their future goals.

Welcome EventAn annual event to encourage the newcomers to Port Ludlow to meet and speak to the social, sports, and service organizations in the community.

Co-chairs: Phyllis Waldenberg and Pat Page

Thanks to funding from LMC, PLVC and SBCA the Welcome Event was a huge success. This year’s event was held on a beautiful Wednesday, July 11 at the Bay Club where approximately 77 newcomers attended with 41 clubs and organizations and for the first time, 8 businesses participating in the meet and greet event.  Along with the free food and refreshments beautifully displayed with donated centerpieces, there were raffle items that were taken home by two very lucky new Port Ludlow residents.  Shuttle service was provided to satellite parking areas to avoid congestion at the Bay Club parking lot.

Utilities & RecyclingMaintain communications with all utilities with affect Port Ludlow.

Chairs:  Russ Michel and Austin Kerr, Recycling

This year the Utilities Committee’s main focus has been to track the geoduck issue, which had not been resolved in 2017.  In 2016 Olympic Water and Sewer, Inc. (OWSI) and Larry Smith, President began working with the Washington State Department of Natural Resources (DNR) on the sewer outfall easement with an initial charge of $134,000 per year.  After two years of work that included underwater surveys, studying pipeline alternatives, and direct negotiations, an amount of only $8,500 per year was assessed.  This resulted in a bi-monthly rate increase of only $2.00 per ratepayer.  The cost to perform the surveys and alternatives studies was $79,082 which OWSI will recover with the stated bi-monthly surcharge.

We are fortunate to have within our community a convenient and comprehensive recycling station.  However, reported misuse of the bins has continued and the Utilities Committee responded to a request for improved signage.  In addition, changes in the international recycle market have posed a challenge to county officials to maintain a viable recycling program.  An education campaign is underway to improve recycling practices and new signs have been posted.  The County introduced the motto “When in Doubt, Throw it Out” in an effort to reduce the amount of trash that is placed in the recycle bins.

MAINTAIN DEFENSIBLE SPACE

Document from CAL FIRE –  http://www.readyforwildfire.org/Defensible-Space/
Keep your property lean and green to help protect your family and home.

Creating defensible space is essential to improve your home’s chance of surviving a wildfire. It’s the buffer you create between a building on your property and the grass, trees, shrubs, or any wildland area that surround it. This space is needed to slow or stop the spread of wildfire and it protects your home from catching fire—either from direct flame contact or radiant heat. Defensible space is also important for the protection of the firefighters defending your home.

Defensible Space Zones

Two zones make up the required 100 feet of defensible space.

Zone 1
Zone 1 extends 30 feet* out from buildings, structures, decks, etc.

  • Remove all dead plants, grass and weeds (vegetation).
  • Remove dead or dry leaves and pine needles from your yard, roof and rain gutters.
  • Trim trees regularly to keep branches a minimum of 10 feet from other trees.
  • Remove branches that hang over your roof and keep dead branches 10 feet away from your chimney.
  • Relocate wood piles into Zone 2.
  • Remove or prune flammable plants and shrubs near windows.
  • Remove vegetation and items that could catch fire from around and under decks.
  • Create a separation between trees, shrubs and items that could catch fire, such as patio furniture, wood piles, swing sets, etc.

Zone 2
Zone 2 extends 100 feet out from buildings, structures, decks, etc.

  • Cut or mow annual grass down to a maximum height of 4 inches.
  • Create horizontal spacing between shrubs and trees. (See diagram)
  • Create vertical spacing between grass, shrubs and trees. (See diagram)
  • Remove fallen leaves, needles, twigs, bark, cones, and small branches. However, they may be permitted to a depth of 3 inches.

* San Diego County requires 50 feet of clearance in Zone 1. Check with your local fire department for any additional defensible space or weed abatement ordinances.

Plant and Tree Spacing

The spacing between grass, shrubs, and trees is crucial to reduce the spread of wildfires. The spacing needed is determined by the type and size of brush and trees, as well as the slope of the land. For example, a property on a steep slope with larger vegetation requires greater spacing between trees and shrubs than a level property that has small, sparse vegetation.

Vertical Spacing
Remove all tree branches at least 6 feet from the ground.

Allow extra vertical space between shrubs and trees. Lack of vertical space can allow a fire to move from the ground to the brush to the tree tops like a ladder.

To determine the proper vertical spacing between shrubs and the lowest branches of trees, use the formula below.


Example: A five foot shrub is growing near a tree. 3×5 = 15 feet of clearance needed between the top of the shrub and the lowest tree branch.

Horizontal Spacing 
Horizontal spacing depends on the slope of the land and the height of the shrubs or trees. Check the chart below to determine spacing distance.

FIRE-SAFE LANDSCAPING

Fire-safe landscaping isn’t necessarily the same thing as a well-maintained yard. Fire-safe landscaping uses fire-resistant plants that are strategically planted to resist the spread of fire to your home.

The good news is that you don’t need to spend a lot of money to make your landscape fire-safe. And fire-safe landscaping can increase your property value and conserve water while beautifying your home

FIRE HAZARD REPORT

The following has been received from our local Fire Chief:

Good Afternoon, et al.,

I must first apologize for the length of this email, and any perceived delays on my response to the grass/fire hazard issue on the closed 9 golf course. I would like everyone to be explicitly clear that regardless of any perceptions, insinuations or other beliefs that this issue is not critically important to myself, or the incredible staff (administration, Fire Commissioners or firefighters) of your Port Ludlow Fire District. I want to assure you that we are absolutely committed to the safety and protection of each and every person in our fantastic community.

I have gone through the emails I have received or been sent in an attempt to encompass as many stakeholders into this email as I can. Unfortunately, I am sure there are some I have missed or am not aware of that have a vested, or general, interest in this issue. Please forward this to anyone you may think would want to be included.

Over the recent weeks, there has been a very active discussion regarding the vegetation on the closed 9 course at various levels; email groups, social groups and within the PLVC committee structure. Unfortunately, with so many people involved, it is pretty much impossible to coordinate a well-represented meeting to address the fire danger concerns. It is important to ensure the input is based on facts, research, expertise and an interactive conversation to address the particulars and details of the issue. As we know, email is a great way to get information out, but unfortunately it is one dimensional and is open to interpretation, personal bias, distraction/deflection/rhetoric and amending of addressee’s. I realize there is a lot of passion and emotion invested in this issue and I do not want to minimize anyone’s position on the subject. However, I also understand that there will be some that do not agree with my findings, which is absolutely fine. The beauty of our country is the freedom of opinion and free speech.

On Tuesday August 28th, I visited the entire closed 9 Golf Course with Chief Brian Tracer and Chief Don Svetich. For those that are not aware of the names, I am your local Fire Chief (Port Ludlow Fire) who has a vast experience in the fire service for over 30 years (Including an extensive background with California Wildfires). Chief Tracer is the appointed Jefferson County Fire Marshal, through the Jefferson County Department of Community Development. Chief Svetich has an exceptional background in Wildland Firefighting, here on the Olympic Peninsula and Nationally, and is the Jefferson County Fire Chief’s expert in Wildland Firefighting. I give you this VERY brief overview, as I want to assure you that I solicited reputable fire service perspectives for my response. I have taken into consideration numerous sources of information to include, but not limited to: emails, mailings sent to my office (with pictures), input from the aforementioned Chief Officers, in field observations and examinations of the course, the safety and protection of our community, accessibility to the area for fire service apparatus, fire history in the area, fuel models, topography, and a number of other considerations, some of which depend on a deeper understanding of fire dynamics that are not readily explained in an email.

Before we toured the golf course, I only informed the other Chiefs that there is concern from some of the community members regarding the fire danger and PLA’s plan to allow the natural landscape to retake the golf course. During the infield inspection, we got out periodically and walked the area, checking the fuels, soil, weather, etc. When we completed the tour, there was consensus that the 8 foot mow strip PLA is doing, in conjunction with the 6 foot cart path (totaling an average of 12-14 feet) is an acceptable barrier to the conditions we observed. This took into account the higher fuel moistures in the timber line and the green belt the homeowners have between their homes and the course. One may argue that the mowing hasn’t been completed in a while and needs to be re-done. However, it is obvious that it was not mowed long ago, and it does not take long for the grass to grow back. However, with the weather as it is, I would not recommend any mowing under current conditions.

I’ve attached Mrs. Oemichen’s email below, as she points out some very valid points. We, the community, have a responsibility to do our part in preventing fires. I definitely want to point out that the homeowners are doing a fantastic part by maintaining the greenbelts on their properties. Our community enjoys the beauty of our location. It is in what the fire service considers a “Wildland Urban Interface (WUI),” which means we live in a rural, forested terrain that abuts to our properties and the fire hazard will always be a risk. Mrs. Oemichen’s email lists some great resources for research and awareness (again, my reason for attaching her email). As Edgewood is a Fire Wise community, there is much we can do individually to reduce the risk, but the risk will never be alleviated in our community.

I appreciate those that have provided input and guidance. As stated earlier, I’m keenly aware of the level of passion, emotion and vested interest in this issue. I know some will appreciate my response and some will oppose it. Just understand that my response is based on the risk assessment, period. I am and always have been a very open and transparent Fire Chief, with a high level of ethics, values and professionalism.

Brad Martin – MS, EFO, EMT-P
Fire Chief
Port Ludlow Fire & Rescue
7650 Oak Bay Road
Port Ludlow, WA 98365
(360) 437-2236 Bus.
(360) 774-6311 Cell
(866) 367-2291 Confidential fax

—– Forwarded Message —–
From: Brett and Sue Oemichen <brettandsue@q.com>To: Brett and Sue Oemichen Mon, 20 Aug 2018 13:14:42 -0400 (EDT)
Subject: Fire Prevention Information

Edgewood Neighbors,
After hearing about the concerns for grass fires in our area, I decided to do educate myself on the potential issue. Here is what I have learned:

Grass, brush, and forest fires have two causes – natural and human. Lightning is the main cause of natural grass, brush, and forest fires and accounts for 4% of total fire numbers. Fortunately, lightning is not a common occurrence on the peninsula.
Human causes account for over 90% of grass and wild fires.

Fortunately, we have no campfires on the “closed nine”; a burning ban is in effect for the entire peninsula so there should be no burning of debris; and typically those who walk on the “closed nine” do not smoke while exercising. Arson is an unpredictable and uncontrollable cause. The “closed nine” is an area unknown to most not from Port Ludlow. It is difficult to predict if anyone in Port Ludlow would intentionally start a fire on the “closed nine”. I would hope not.

Grass and pine needles are considered light fuels for wild fires. Light fuels lose moisture quickly with a low relative humidity. After reading this, I checked the relative humidity (RH) at our home (which is near the “closed nine”) at 5:30 pm. It was 85%. This morning at 7:00 am it was 95%. I plan to monitor the RH at our home throughout the next week. Again luckily for us, we very rarely have temperatures over 80 near our home (and close to the “closed nine”) and the relative humidity usually does not get very low.

There are several websites to get more information on grass and wildfires. NFPA has very good information for homeowners on fire prevention and fire protection. The following is from the NFPA:

Edgewood Village is a certified Firewise Community. The following is from the NFPA website. For more information, follow this link to the Firewise page on the Edgewood web site: https://www.plsbca.org/edgewood/hoaBiz/firewise/index.php

My hope is for our community to not succumb to the scare tactics of some, but to instead educate ourselves to the real risks, make sure that our own property is protected by following Firewise recommendations, and to continue to learn and work together for a better community.

Your neighbor, Sue Oemichen