News Flash Home
The original item was published from 11/5/2021 9:25:41 AM to 11/13/2021 12:00:02 AM.

News Flash

Sheriff - Emergency Management Daily Briefing

Posted on: November 5, 2021

[ARCHIVED] November 05, 2021 Emergency Management Daily Briefing

Active Incidents

On August 18th, Governor Inslee ordered a statewide mask mandate.  Please see the Governor's website at the following URL:

COVID-19 - The “Proclamation of Emergency” signed by the Whatcom County Executive concerning COVID-19 remains in effect. 


The United States has announced that fully vaccinated, non-citizen travelers with appropriate documentation will be permitted to enter the United States for non-essential travel via land Ports Of Entry and ferry terminals starting on November 8, 2021 and has released this fact sheet to assist those entering the United States.

Canada allows fully vaccinated Americans to visit Canada with these Canadian requirements:

Advisories, Watches and Warning

A  "Small Craft Warning" is in effect until 3:00pm this afternoon for south winds 20-30 knots for the east entrance US waters Strait of Juan De Fuca -Northern Inland Waters including the San Juan Islands, and Admiralty Inlet. 

Environment Canada has issued a "Gale Warning" for the Strait of Georgia-South of Nanaimo.  Winds southeast 25-25 knots diminishing to south 20 knots early this morning then backing to southeast 15-20 knots late this morning.  Wind diminishing to southeast 5-15 knots Saturday morning then increasing to southeast 20 knots Saturday evening.

Beginning November 6th and continuing through November 11th, we will see our first period of King Tides which will be around the ten foot level.  Additional periods will occur in December and January.  Strong westerly winds can sometimes cause spray or even a "pushing" effect to carry water onto roadways that are at sea level.  Nothing is forecast at this time other than we are entering the Kind Tide season. 

See the Washington State Department of Transportation website for intermittent lane closures on i-5 and SR-11 along Interstate 5 at milepost 250 near Old Fairhaven Parkway and along State Route 11 just west of I-5.  This will go from October 20 through November 30.

Inland Weather

Wet and cooler weather will be with us through the weekend and into the middle of next week.  There is some wind in our forecast as well that will carry into tomorrow night especially places like Point Roberts where some gusts could once again reach 40mph.  Everyone else is likely to see wind from the south with gusts near 30mph at times.  So, the weather today is rain early, then tapering off a little until later this afternoon when the chance of a thunderstorm exists until later in the evening.  Southerly winds with gust near 25 mph or a little stronger throughout the day mostly from the south except Sumas where northeast wind will exist.  High temperatures will hover around 50 degrees in the lowlands.  Maple Falls will be about 45 degrees and Newhalem come in at 41 for a high today. Tonight, rain will continue in most areas with temperatures ranging from 33 in Newhalem to around 40 degrees in other locations.  There is likely to be a rain/snow mixture in Newhalem as temperatures get down to the freezing mark and the National Weather Service is pointing toward snow around the 2100 foot-level at night and rising to 2800 feet or so during the day.  Expect weekend temperatures and precipitation to be about the same and the wind tapering off after tomorrow night.  For the skiers out there, there are some good accumulation forecasts over the next five days.  There's nothing posted on the Mt Baker site about an opening date, but can't be too far off if snowfall continues at current pace. They should be posting updates on the Mt Baker site soon.

Rivers and Streams

The Northwest River Forecasts Center is showing that the Nooksack Forks have peaked at Saxon Bridge and Cedarville and are dropping rapidly.  Ferndale gauge shows the peak is being reached right about now.  No flooding occurred at any of the sites.  Looking forward, while there are several fronts out in the Pacific, none of them appear to have enough juice at this time to push the river levels up to any concern level.  We will continue to watch for significant developments, but for the time-being the biggest concern would be to watch for any snags if you're on the river or slippery banks if you're on the shore.  

Whatcom County Coastal Weather

The next in a series of frontal systems will move across the inland waters by late this morning.  A stronger system crosses the waters on Saturday with another round of stronger winds and building seas.  Additional system will reach the waters through much of next week.   Winds.  Today:  SW wind 15-25 knots becoming S 10-20 knots in the afternoon.  Wind waves 2-4'.  Rain in the morning then a chance of rain in the afternoon.  Tonight:  S wind 5-15 knots becoming SE 10-20 knots after midnight.  Wind waves 1-3'. A slight chance of thunderstorms in the evening then a slight chance of rain after midnight.  Tomorrow:  SE wind 15-25 knots rising to 20-30 knots in the afternoon.  Wind waves 3-4'.  Rain likely.  Tomorrow Night:  S wind 15-25 knots.  Wind waves 2-4'.  Sunday.  SE wind 5-15 knots.  Wind waves 2' or less.  Sunday Night.  S wind 5-15 knots.  Wind waves 2' or less.. Note.  Over the weekend, there are several periods where winds are forecast to cross into the "Small Craft Advisory" realm.  The NWS has not yet issued an advisory for those periods but is likely to at some point.  Monitor marine weather to ensure you are getting the latest weather and advisory information.

November 05, 202107019.23
November 05, 2021
November 05, 2021
November 06, 2021
November 06, 2021
November 06, 2021
November 06, 2021
November 07, 2021
November 07, 2021
November 07, 2021
November 07, 2021
November 08, 2021

Emergency Management Tips and Reminders

Fall is a time for mushroom picking, hunting, fishing, hiking and exploring. And to be prepared.....

While this is a great time of year, everyone needs to be prepared in the event they find that their planned weekend in the woods does not go the way they intended, and here are a few tips:

Back Country Medical Kit

You definitely need to carry a first aid kit, and for most people and most injuries the following is a good place to start when you are going out in the back country even for a day.  There are lots of good sources on the Internet to find kits but the following list is primarily centered around patching cuts and cleaning wounds in an emergency:

  • Tape and Glue – Duct tape and super glue. Super glue can be used in place of stitches. Athletic tape is great but duct tape can wrap a wound or fix gear so not a bad idea to keep a small roll for multipurpose use.
  • Gauze and Bandages – A few small squares of gauze and several adhesive bandage squares are essential. You can use the large squares and cut them into strips if needed. Primarily used for blisters. You could stuff the gauze in a deep wound to stop bleeding if needed.
  • Disinfectant – Keep a small amount of antiseptic in case of a serious wound and a small tube of triple antibiotic ointment. Rinse wounds with water first then clean everything before patching things up.
  • QuickClot – In a worst case scenario, rapid blood loss can crush your odds of surviving. Hunters and anglers are handling knives and firearms in remote places where accidents can happen. A blood clotting agent will stop the rapid blood loss and can save your life. It’s also easy to find over the counter.
  • Pills – Aspirin for swelling and potential heart problems is a good idea, and if you are out overnight you may want to make sure you have any extra medications you may take just in case.

Back Country Preparedness Kit

As with your first aid kit, there are lots of good sources on the Internet to find kits and the following suggestions are a good place to start, especially if you are going into the foothills and mountains in our area:

  • Water Filtration System - Most of us understand the importance of hydration, but depending on how long you plan to be in the back country it might not be feasible to pack enough water. A small filtration system will allow you to acquire clean drinking water without having to lug around a few gallons.
  • Cooking Pot - This can be used for more purposes than you think. You’ll definitely need it for cooking, but you’ll also need a container to put your freshly filtered water in. And when it starts to get cold you can also heat your water to provide extra warmth. 
  • Leatherman Signal - With implements such as a ferro rod for starting fires, a saw for cutting down branches, and a safety whistle that can be heard from far away, this tool will prove it’s worth when you’re in a rough spot. Keep one in your pocket or clip one on to your backpack.
  • Compact Stove (with fuel) - The modern day camp stove is so compact and easy to use that there is almost no excuse to not have one. Cooking meals, providing heat, and even purifying water (if your filtration system fails). Make sure one of these lives in your bag and the fuel is always full.
  • Trail Mix - Healthy, energy-rich, and no cooking necessary. A small bag of trail mix is a perfect snack for being in the outdoors. Make sure it has a good mix of nuts, dried fruits, bits of dark chocolate and other items to make it tasty.
  • Compass - This may seem a bit old fashioned, but a quality compass is still an incredibly useful tool. When cell service isn’t an option, how will you find your way around? A small compass and an understanding of your surroundings will ensure that you can find your way when all else fails.
  • Flashlight - Even if you don’t plan to be out in the back country past dark, pack a flashlight. Things happen and plans change. If you’re in an unfamiliar part of the woods with no lights, things can go bad fast. Don’t like to carry one? Try a headlamp to keep your hands free.
  • Emergency Blanket - Also known as space-blankets (originally designed by NASA), this compact/light weight item should live in everybody’s bag. The thin mylar sheet works to trap in heat or reflect it making it extremely versatile. It can also double as a make-shift shelter to keep you protected from the elements. 

Both the medical and preparedness items listed here are considered to be the minimum a person should take with them.  They are not intended to be the only things or to suggest that you do not need anything else.  You can find good information locally at:

  • Yeagers, 3101 Northwest Ave, Bellingham, WA  98225, 360.733.1080
  • REI, 400 36th St, Bellingham, WA  98225, 360.647.8955
  • American Alpine Institute, 1515 12th St, Bellingham, WA  98225, 360.671.1505


Information concerning face coverings and other protective actions can be found on the Whatcom County Health Department Website.

These Daily Briefings on Incidents, Advisories, Watches and Warnings, current weather and Emergency Management tips are published Monday through Friday, as well as during times of increased awareness or actual events.

Facebook Twitter Email