Burst gas pipe sends at least four to emergency room

December 17, 2013

A burst gas pipe at the Cedar Hills Landfill south of Issaquah sent nearby residents to the emergency room Dec. 7.

That evening, neighbors began smelling a great deal of gas in their homes and responded by calling Eastside Fire & Rescue and the King County Solid Waste Division. According to an EFR report of the incident, all responding members identified gas in the area.

“Engine 71 proceeded to the address and was met by the homeowner,” Lt. Jason Ward’s EFR report reads. “The homeowner stated the smell of gas in the area was very strong. All three members of Engine 71 could smell landfill gas in the area.”

Supervisors at the scene found that the gas line used to pull landfill-produced methane gas into the Bio Energy Washington plant had ruptured. They immediately shut down the gas to the pipe.

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Puget Sound Clean Air Agency issues burn ban

January 18, 2013

NEW — 3:30 p.m. Jan. 18, 2013

King County is under a Stage 1 burn ban, effective at 4 p.m. Friday and in place until further notice.

The moratorium from the Puget Sound Clean Air Agency comes after a previous burn ban ended Wednesday. The agency issues air quality burn bans when air pollution rises — or is forecast to reach — unhealthy levels.

During a Stage 1 burn ban, no burning is allowed in fireplaces or uncertified wood stoves. Residents should rely instead on other, cleaner heat sources, such as a furnace or electric baseboard heaters, for a few days until air quality improves, the public health risk diminishes and the ban is cancelled.

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King County burn ban ends as air quality improves

January 16, 2013

NEW — 2:15 p.m. Jan. 16, 2013

Improving air quality led the Puget Sound Clean Air Agency to lift a burn ban in King County at 1 p.m. Wednesday.

The agency issues air quality burn bans when air pollution rises — or is forecast to reach — unhealthy levels.

Meanwhile, a Stage 1 burn ban remains in effect for Pierce and Snohomish counties.

During a Stage 1 burn ban, no burning is allowed in fireplaces or uncertified wood stoves. Residents should rely instead on other, cleaner heat sources, such as a furnace or electric baseboard heaters, for a few days until air quality improves, the public health risk diminishes and the ban is cancelled.

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Fireplace use is prohibited under regional burn ban

January 14, 2013

NEW — 10:30 a.m. Jan. 14, 2013

Burning is prohibited in wood-burning fireplaces and wood stoves during a regional burn ban issued by the Puget Sound Clean Air Agency.

The authority issued a burn ban King, Pierce and Snohomish counties until further notice after many areas around Puget Sound reached air pollution levels unhealthy for sensitive groups.

Forecasters expect the cold, dry, and stagnant weather conditions to extend into the week. The agency continues to monitor air quality and weather.

Under a Stage 2 burn ban, no burning is allowed in any wood-burning fireplaces, wood stoves or fireplace inserts, or pellet stoves. Violators face a $1,000 penalty.

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Summer heat increases smog risk, impacts air quality

August 21, 2012

Summer in Western Washington means a respite from the rain, but the season also brings wildfires and increased ozone levels.

The result is diminished air quality and increased health risks for people battling heart and lung diseases.

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Temperature to inch close to 100 degrees in Issaquah

August 16, 2012

NEW — 8 a.m. Aug. 16, 2012

Expect the temperature to climb to almost 100 degrees in Issaquah on Thursday, as the week comes to a simmering conclusion.

National Weather Service meteorologists in Seattle forecast a high temperature near 96 and sunny conditions for Thursday. Expect a high temperature near 94 and sunny conditions on Friday. The high temperature is expected to drop to a more manageable 82 degrees Saturday.

Issaquah is under a regional excessive heat warning. The alert means the region is in a prolonged period of dangerously hot temperatures, and the combination of heat and humidity can cause heat-related illnesses. The excessive heat warning is in effect until 11 p.m. Friday.

The city is also under a regional red flag warning, meaning a combination of strong winds, low relative humidity and high temperatures can create explosive fire potential. The red flag warning is in effect until 11 a.m. Thursday.

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Heat-related smog advisory issued for King County

August 15, 2012

NEW — 4:30 p.m. Aug. 16, 2012

Puget Sound Clean Air Agency forecasters said smog pollution in King and Pierce counties could reach unhealthy levels as temperatures rise to 90 degrees and beyond.

Smoggy conditions should mostly impact communities in the Cascade foothills, including Issaquah. Pollution generated by vehicle traffic and activities in the urban areas of Everett, Seattle and Tacoma accumulates as particles move to outlying suburban and rural areas.

Smog levels may remain elevated in the Cascade foothills through Saturday. The agency offers a tool for residents to check air quality in Issaquah and other locations.

Exposure to smog can trigger asthma attacks, make breathing difficult, exacerbate lung and heart problems, and weaken the immune system. The state Department of Health recommends for people sensitive to air pollution to limit time spent outdoors.

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CleanScapes unveils natural gas garbage truck, wildlife-resistant containers for Issaquah

June 15, 2012

NEW — 8 a.m. June 15, 2012

The next garbage hauler for most Issaquah residents, CleanScapes, rolled out a compressed-natural gas truck and wildlife-resistant containers in recent days, as the company prepares to start service in the city.

The contract between Seattle-based CleanScapes and the city starts July 1, though service in the city does not commence until July 2 because July 1 is a Sunday.

The changeover from Waste Management to CleanScapes affects most Issaquah customers. Allied Waste — a local name for national company Republic Services — hauls garbage in South Cove and Greenwood Point neighborhoods along Lake Sammamish.

In a June 13 ceremony, CleanScapes executives and city leaders celebrated the addition of a hydraulic launch assist, compressed natural-gas powered truck to the company fleet. Officials said CleanScapes is the first company in the Pacific Northwest to use the truck.

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Increased fireplace use impacted air quality

January 24, 2012

The air in Issaquah turned thick with wood smoke Jan. 20 as residents lit fireplaces for warmth amid a regional power outage.

The agency responsible for monitoring air quality in the region, Puget Sound Clean Air Agency, ranked the air quality in King County as moderate for days last week.

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Increased fireplace use during power outage impacts air quality

January 20, 2012

Jan Bagge (right) and neighbor Flora Lindsay purchase 14 gallons of gas at the East Lake Sammamish Parkway Southeast Union 76 station for the generators at their Preston homes. By Greg Farrar

NEW — 4:30 p.m. Jan. 20, 2012

The air in Issaquah is thick with woodsmoke Friday as residents light up fireplaces for warmth amid a regional power outage.

The agency responsible for monitoring air quality in the region, Puget Sound Clean Air Agency, ranked the air quality in King County as moderate Friday.

The ranking means air quality is acceptable, but for some pollutants a moderate health concern exists. The health concern impacts people sensitive to air pollution — small children, senior citizens and people suffering from chronic health conditions.

The air pollutants can be harmful for people suffering from heart disease, diabetes, asthma and lung diseases. Pollutants pose the most risk to children and older adults.

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