News Briefs

SPH Foundation holds annual meeting at 3:30 p.m. Monday

The annual meeting of the South Peninsula Hospital Foundation Inc. is 3:30 p.m. Monday in the hospital’s conference room at 4300 Bartlett St. in Homer. The meeting is open to the public. The agenda will include an annual financial report, review of the year and election of officers. 

South Peninsula Hospital Foundation is a not-for-profit charitable institution designed to support the community health care mission of the hospital. Recent accomplishments include diabetes education for uninsured and under-insured patients, annual health related scholarships, the Homer Council on the Arts hospital gallery program and more. 

More information on the foundation can be found at or by contacting Phyllis Cooper, foundation board chair, at 235-8820.


Trooper injured, but OK,
after near head-on crash

An Alaska State Trooper suffered minor injuries in a near head-on crash on Saturday. Trooper John Probst, 54, of the Anchor Point Post, was taken to South Peninsula Hospital for non-life threatening injuries and later released. Probst should be able to return to duty this week, said trooper spokesperson Megan Peters.

According to a  trooper press release, at about 4:45 p.m. Jan. 19 Probst drove his 2013 Ford Explorer heading south near Mile 145 Sterling Highway when Anthony Larocca, 46, of Kenai, driving north in a 1995 Dodge pickup truck tried to pass a car in front of him and came into Probst’s lane. 

Probst tried to avoid Larocca’s truck, but the Dodge spun out of control and hit the driver’s side of the Ford. 

Probst had minor injuries while Larocca and his two passengers did not report any injuries.
All parties involved wore seatbelts. 

The crash caused significant damage to the trooper car. Impairment is not believed to be a factor in the crash, the press release said. The Alaska Bureau of Highway Patrol is investigating the crash.


Comments sought on oil spill risk reduction in Cook Inlet

The Cook Inlet Risk Assessment Advisory Team is asking for public comments and ideas on ways to reduce the chances of accidental oil spills or to reduce spills’ impact on the area’s waters.

The U.S. Coast Guard, Cook Inlet Regional Citizens Advisory Council and the Alaska Department of Environmental Conservation created the Cook Inlet Risk Assessment to look into spill risk reduction measures, like policies, rules, equipment, systems and services, among others, according to a press release.

“It can be something fairly obvious or traditional such as a vessel traffic system that monitors and controls the movement of vessels transiting Cook Inlet. Or, it may be something less obvious, such as a sub-sea pipeline that would take the place of tankers moving oil across Cook Inlet,” CIRCAC officials wrote in a release.

The risk assessment project is guided by a management team of the aforementioned agencies, a 14-member advisory panel including mariners, marine pilots, port directors, fishermen, subsistence users and others. 

The project previously completed three technical studies analyzing vessel traffic, accident frequencies and potential consequences from spills according to a release.

A list of risk reduction measures set to be considered can be found at 

All public suggestions will be considered by the advisory team at a late February meeting and comments on existing ideas are welcomed as well.

Comments may be submitted by Feb. 4 to, by mail to CIRA Comments, Nuka Research, PO Box 175, Seldovia, AK 99663, or by fax to (240) 394-4855.