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I was driving south on 101 and just north of Humboldt Hill and all of the sudden I seemed to lose control of my steering as I wobbled around the lane.  Then it stopped.  I drove off the highway to check my tires, but they were all fine.  I drove the rest of the way home wary of some latent steering system problem.  It wasn’t until we got home and listened to telephone messages that we put it together.  Apparently I was almost exactly due east of the epicenter.

I want to get caught up on my information.  People who were in Old Town actually fell to the ground, and Eureka has suffered power outtages.  The television stations are out.

There are also wild rumors flying about.  I just came from Shop Smart.  They did not lose their entire wine inventory.  They lost 11 bottles and some other merchandise fell to the floor.

Nothing fell in my home that we’ve noticed; not even a wine glass from our open shelves.

I’m hearing that it was 6.5 and felt as far south as San Francisco.

More as it comes to me.

Addendum: There is a report of a house which slid off it’s foundation in Eureka.  A friend of mine was walking on the sidewalk and had to grab a sign post to keep her footing.  Moonshadow has posted a link to some remarkable shots in Ferndale as well as a news clip which contains shots of the Booklegger and Eureka Book Store in shambles.

Second addendum: From Mark Lovelace:

All,

As you are aware, the Humboldt area experienced a 6.5 earthquake this evening.

There are currently 23,720 customers out of power. Most of the outages have occurred in the Eureka / Arcata / Trindad / and Fairhaven areas as follows:

Trinidad Sub – 1498 customers

Eureaka Sta A – 7747 customers

Harris Sub – 2062 customers

Blues Lake Sub – 1990 customers

Fairhaven Sub – 809 customers

Aracata Subs – 9614 customers

Humboldt Bay Power Plant reports fine, after a thorough inspection and is operational.

We are currently assessing the damaged circuits and the OEC is open.

Currently, we expect to have all power back on within 24 hours.  I will provide more updates as I receive them.

Alison TalbottGovernment RelationsPacific Gas & Electric Company

Third addendum: Lot’s of testimonials at Heraldo’s.

And Fred got rattled but good.

Fourth addendum: The Sheriff says there are no reported injuries.  Amazing.  I’m posting the full statement in the thread.

Ernie’s on the story as well.

Richard Marks asks about tsunami potential, but the radio reports that there is no danger.

Fifth addendum: It’s reported that the skylight in the Bayshore Mall over the play structure collapsed.  Miraculously, no kids hurt.  Not seriously anyway.

The local televisions are still out, but KTVU has a news clip.  You can find that uncannily times Youtube video at Heraldo’s.

The above graph comes from here.

Sixth addendum: I received a second-hand report of someone walking in Sequoia Park who heard large trees falling.

No damage to the nuclear facility, right about where I was when the quake struck.  Hadn’t even thought about it until I read the paper this morning.

Seventh addendum: I received the following email this evening.

Eric, it’s Dan Squier over at Eureka Broadcasting. One bit of information in regard to emergency radio, KEKA Thunder Country 101 was on the air with live updates in So. Humboldt. Our news stations don’t transmit that far but our country station does so listeners on So. Humboldt can find live news during emergencies on that station.

Latest update — 10 million dollars in damage in Eureka and that number will rise. Damage assessments will continue for the next few weeks or so and a very preliminary report states that the T-S building may not make it.

Dan Squier
KINS news Radio 980 AM

PRESS RELEASE – FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Redwood ACLU announces Patriot Award nominees

The Redwood Chapter of the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) is pleased to announce the nominees for the 2009 Patriot Award. The chapter gives the Patriot Award annually to the member or members of the community who, in the opinion of the chapter, have demonstrated a patriotic commitment to defending and preserving the individual rights and liberties that the Constitution and laws of the United States guarantee everyone in our country.

The 2009 nominees are:

Betty Chin and John Shelter for their work defending the rights of people who are houseless.

The Crisis Intervention Team of the Humboldt County Department of Health & Human Services Mental Health Branch, which assists people who are experiencing a mental health crisis.

Eureka Councilman Larry Glass for working with the ACLU on items of common interest, including Eureka’s “True Ward” initiative.

County Supervisor Bonnie Neely for supporting the ongoing development of a framework for citizen police review.

Tad Robinson for defending freedom of speech and the right of the people peaceably to petition the government for redress of grievances.

“It is inspiring to see so many local citizens committed to enhancing our civil liberties,” said chapter Vice-Chair Christina Allbright.

The winner will be announced and honored at the Redwood Chapter’s annual membership meeting. The meeting will be held on Monday January 25th at 6pm at the Humboldt Unitarian Universalist Fellowship Hall in Bayside. The keynote speaker will be Northern California ACLU Executive Director Abdi Soltani. Soltani’s speech will be on the topic “Civil Liberties in the Age of Obama.” The meeting will be a pot-luck style dinner and the public is invited to attend.  Also at the meeting, the over 870 members of the Redwood ACLU will elect the chapter’s Board of Directors for 2010.

“I encourage all ACLU members, and any interested members of the public to attend our annual meeting on the 25th,” said Redwood ACLU Chair Greg Allen.  “With the Patriot Award ceremony and a keynote speech by our new regional executive director, it should certainly be a worthwhile evening.”

The Redwood Chapter of the ACLU is the local, all-volunteer presence of the ACLU. The ACLU is our nation’s guardian of liberty, working daily in courts, legislatures and communities to defend and preserve the individual rights and liberties that the Constitution and laws of the United States guarantee everyone in this country.

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