Earthquakes shake the Bay Area as the 30th anniversary of Loma Prieta looms

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Town Crier Archives
One person died when a five-story tower at St. Joseph Seminary collapsed in the October 1989 Loma Prieta earthquake. The seminary closed in 1991. The Los Altos History Museum’s latest exhibition, “Our Community Prepares,” focuses on local residents’ response to natural disasters.

Last week, the Los Altos History Museum announced its new exhibition in partnership with the city of Los Altos titled "Our Community Prepares." Set to open three days after the 30th anniversary of the Loma Prieta Earthquake (Oct. 17, 1989), the exhibition will feature historic photographs from the aftermath of the significant natural disaster as well as teach attendees how to prepare for future quakes. 

Myth busting the flu vaccine

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Megan V. Winslow/Town Crier
A Walgreens pharmacist administers the flu vaccine last week. The Santa Clara County Department of Health encourages everyone 6 months and older to get the flu vaccine.

While the United States flu season typically starts in early October, two people in Santa Clara County under the age of 65 had already died of the viral infection before the month even started, the Santa Clara County Department of Health reported Sept. 24.

The Town Crier recently interviewed Dr. George Han, deputy health officer and infectious disease and response branch director with the Department of Health, to learn whether some commonly held beliefs about the flu and the flu vaccine – which it recommends for everyone 6 months and older – are true or false.


Lights back on for Los Altos, Los Altos Hills

Approximately 3,538 customers in Los Altos and Los Altos Hills were impacted by last week’s PG&E Public Safety Power Shutoffs, the utility announced Monday.

The outages, meant to reduce wildfire risk, started locally for 21 residences at 11:27 p.m. Oct. 9, according to PG&E officials. The remaining 3,517 residences lost power at 11:50 p.m. the same day. The first group regained power at 11:09 a.m. Friday and the second regained it at 12:44 p.m. Thursday.

Los Altos Hills protests quarry plan

Megan V. Winslow/Town Crier
A view of the Permanente ridgeline, as seen from the Mora Drive trailhead, is shown Oct. 11. Los Altos Hills joins other local towns in protesting Lehigh Southwest Cement Co.’s proposal to lower the ridgeline by 100 feet for a distance of 3,000 feet. Doing so would improve geotechnical stability, according to Lehigh officials.

Los Altos Hills joins Los Altos and Cupertino as yet another objector to Lehigh Southwest Cement Co.’s request to amend its reclamation plan for Permanente Quarry in Cupertino.

Citing “significant changes” from the reclamation plan Santa Clara County officials approved in 2012, Los Altos Hills City Manager Carl Cahill lays out the town’s argument against the company’s May 22 application in a letter sent to the county Planning Department.

Ready or not, PG&E power shutoffs are coming

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Megan V. Winslow/Town Crier
Los Altos Hills emergency manager Marsha Hovey addresses questions and concerns at the Sept. 25 town hall meeting dedicated to discussing how to prepare in the event of a wildfire.

On a day last week when temperatures soared and PG&E cut power to nearly 50,000 customers in counties northeast of the Bay Area to reduce fire risk, a dozen Los Altos and Los Altos Hills residents assembled to learn what they can do to prepare for the same event locally.

“We’re going to see it happen somewhere,” Los Altos Hills emergency manager Marsha Hovey warned attendees of the Sept. 25 community meeting at Los Altos Hills Town Hall.

Prius owners: Do you know where your 'cat' is?

Catalytic converter theft is on the rise in the Bay Area, and there’s one vehicle model especially coveted by thieves: the Toyota Prius.

In Mountain View alone, residents have reported seven such thefts and one attempted theft during the past three months, according to Katie Nelson, Mountain View Police Department spokeswoman.

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