Local Fire Dept.

April 23, 2021 Whidbey News-Times

Oak Harbor fire chief: Response times slower than year ago

“Staffing shortages, city growth and the need to don personal protective equipment during the coronavirus pandemic led to longer response times, Merrill said.”

“The department lost about a third of its paid-on-call staff from April to September last year, Merrill explained, because they were members of the Navy and were restricted from volunteering during the pandemic.”


WA State Ferries

June 30, 2020 KIRO 7 News video

Ferry wait times spike following staff shortages

“Currently, the number of passengers is going back up, but more than 150 employees are off the job due to the pandemic.”

Some (employees) are in that high-risk category, either by age, or whether by underlying health conditions, or both, so we want to keep them safe,” Sterling told KIRO 7 News.

“Ahead of the Fourth of July period, ferry workers are already warning passengers the wait this weekend could exceed four hours.”


Months Later

Did any sort of hiring blitz take place? Many people are ready for good jobs in this economy.

Response from WSF:

We have hired a bunch of new employees since and many more are still in training in preparation for this coming summer.”

April 16, 2021 1:42pm Whidbey News-Times

Coupeville ferry short crew; some reservations canceled


The High-Risk Category

Would it make sense to have age/physical standards requirements in hiring? The US Armed Forces are one example of where these requirements are in place.

Related/previous blog:

Central Planning and Essential Travel


Do property taxes go down because fleets of school buses sat idle and students remained at home?

Are deadlines for payment of property taxes extended?


If we could save just one life-

We might reduce the speed limit on the highway to 40 mph.

We might require all drivers on state roadways to wear a NASCAR/Indy-style helmet.

If driving a car without a seatbelt is not legal, should motorcycle use be phased out to save lives?


Cartel drugs can be deadly for some.

US Troops at the border, the big El Chapo takedown, opioid lawsuits, REAL ID, Homeland Security grant money, CBP social media posts, strict post 911/GWOT security protocols, and a $49.8 billion US Dept. of Homeland Security fail to keep meth, heroin and fentanyl from arriving in Hometown USA.

Should further restrictions be put in place?

The legal drinking age could be raised to age 35, if it would save lives.

Everyone could be required to go to 12 step meetings as a preventative measure.

High risk activities could be phased out.

Mountain climbing, riding in a hot air balloon, operating a home built aircraft, and swimming in any location without a lifeguard are examples of activities that could be restricted.


The idea is to live in a free and honest society.

Suppressing Choices – One Size Fits All

Leavenworth COVID And Beer Drinking Oddities

WWII Generation Endured Rationing With Little Complaint



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Port Hadlock Transit Center