PENINSULA — A four-day holiday weekend with moderate temperatures brought thousands of visitors to the Pacific County seashore for Independence Day.
With a few exceptions — and not counting a lot of noise from fireworks and traffic — the holiday was without major incidents. Reports indicate that no lives were lost due to drowning or other causes.
Based on preliminary reports, exceptions included:
• A vehicle was destroyed by fire on the beach.
• A 7-year-old boy reportedly suffered a serious hand injury from an exploding fireworks mortar round that landed near him.
• A man who had only recently regained driving privileges was involved in a collision with a volunteer reserve sheriff’s deputy’s vehicle on July 3. The man allegedly rear-ended the deputy, who was stopped at the Sid Snyder-Sandridge intersection.
• Surf rescue volunteers were called to assist a 14-year-old boy in serious trouble in the water on July 5, but he managed to get back to shore shortly before they arrived.
On the positive side, many residents and visitors reported nearshore whale sightings. The presence of flocks of birds offshore suggests that salmon and humpbacks may be feeding on schools of small baitfish.
The Washington State Patrol didn’t have to make any arrests for driving under the influence in south Pacific County over the weekend. They’ve found in recent years that maintaining a strong visible presence appears to discourage lawbreaking of that kind.