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Railroads, officials discuss concerns

Wide-ranging meeting touches on safety, better communication

Representatives of the two major railroads that operate in the Columbia River Gorge and government leaders from around the area recently met in an effort to bridge communication gaps amid controversy. In a “listening summit” that stretched over six hours at the Columbia Gorge Interpretive Center in Stevenson, railroad officials from Union Pacific (on the Oregon side of the Columbia River), and BNSF (on the Washington side), met with local mayors, county officials, and other community leaders to discuss a variety of issues.

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Photos show fire losses

CASCADE LOCKS (AP) — Aerial photos show severe damage to some parts of the Columbia River Gorge from a large wildfire that continues to burn.

I-84 to close for blasting

Interstate 84 will see rolling slowdowns and delays for rock blasting necessary to build the latest segment of the Historic Columbia River Highway State Trail in a series of as many as seven closures that began Wednesday near milepost 53.

Meeting explores decision to end DACA

Some 40 people attended a recent meeting about President Trump’s decision to end DACA, the federal program that defers deportation for undocumented immigrants who came to the U.S. as children. Recipients of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) protection are often called “Dreamers,” which refers to a legislative act that was never passed by Congress.

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HR ‘Dreamer’ speaks out

Leonidas Montenegro came to the U.S. with family at age 13

Leonidas Montenegro and his family came to the U.S. from Guatemala when he was 13. In 2012, the Obama Administration began its DACA (Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals) program, which defers deportation for undocumented immigrations who arrived in the U.S. as children. Montenegro, then in his early 20s, jumped on the opportunity to legally remain in the U.S.

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Bullets skim by swimmers on Columbia

Athletes from the Columbia Gorge Triathlon Club got a scare Sunday morning when bullets buzzed around them and entered the water not far from swimmers. “It was pretty terrifying,” said Dawn Rasmussen of The Dalles, who was in a kayak in front of the group.

Ban on using cell phones while driving starts Oct. 1

The Dalles Police Officer Jeff Kienlen just got back from a traffic conference, where discussion touched on the fact that fatal crashes are on the rise, mostly due to distracted driving. And so the timing is apt for the Oct. 1 start of Oregon’s new distracted driving law, which bans holding a cell phone or other electronic device while driving.

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Smoke, traffic impacts region

Interstate 84 west reopens, eastbound lanes still closed

The westbound lanes of Interstate 84 between Hood River and Troutdale re-opened to travelers Thursday evening, but the eastbound lanes remain closed with no timeline for re-opening. Although two lanes of the freeway are now in use, the Oregon Department of Transportation announced Sept. 14 that all ramps along the 45-mile stretch of road, milepost 62 to 17, remain closed, except for those in and out of Cascade Locks.

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Pig Bowl helps 3 families

For the first time in its 15-year history, the Pig Bowl, a fundraising flag football game featuring local law enforcement, is donating proceeds from its Sept. 23 game to three families.

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Gorge trails may be closed for months

TROUTDALE (AP) — Hiking trails affected by an Oregon wildfire in the Columbia River Gorge might be closed for months, authorities said Monday.

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Firefighters make slow progress against Oregon's big blazes

BROOKINGS (AP) — Firefighters in southern Oregon on Tuesday gained a toehold on a fire burning near the coastal town of Brookings but new evacuations were ordered after a flare-up on a different complex of lightning-caused fires in a remote area near the California border.

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Hot, dry weather a challenge on front lines of Oregon fires

BROOKINGS (AP) — Firefighters are confronting extremely hot and dry weather on the fire lines of two large blazes burning in southwest and central Oregon.

Eclipse viewers did little damage in Oregon

PRINEVILLE — Patrick Lair with the U.S. Forest Service drove into the Ochoco National Forest to see how things looked after hosting thousands of eclipse visitors. "At one point, we had bumper-to-bumper traffic from the prairie out past Prineville," he said. "I'm kind of amazed not to see more trash on the sides of the road."

Gorge cities recognized for war heroes

The Dalles and Hood River are two of 12 towns in Oregon that will be designated as a “Medal of Honor City.”

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Deputies on the move during historic event

The moon's shadow passing directly in front of the sun, blotting out all but the halo-like solar corona, was reported Monday to have been the most watched celestial event in human history. Millions across the United States travelled to key viewing areas and tens of thousands came to Central Oregon, many passing through Wasco County.

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