State leaders discuss safety at Cape Kiwanda after series of fat - KPTV - FOX 12

State leaders discuss safety at Cape Kiwanda after series of fatal falls

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Saying that the existing cable barricades and signs are not effective, residents at a town hall Thursday suggested patrols better fencing or bigger signs as solutions to the danger near the coast at Cape Kiwanda. (KPTV) Saying that the existing cable barricades and signs are not effective, residents at a town hall Thursday suggested patrols better fencing or bigger signs as solutions to the danger near the coast at Cape Kiwanda. (KPTV)
PACIFIC CITY, OR (KPTV) -

After a series of six deadly falls into the ocean in two years at Cape Kiwanda, state officials say more needs to be done to keep people safe. 

A town hall meeting was held in Pacific City Thursday, to discuss solutions to the growing problem.

Officials said existing fences and warning signs don’t seem to keep people out, while also noting there are countless rescue operations that happen every day of which the public isn’t aware.

While our FOX 12 crew was out getting video of the area, our cameras caught numerous people crossing the cable fencing, including one group of teens who even posed next to the danger signs.

The room full of people at the town hall meeting fought to prevent anyone else from getting hurt at the cape. One woman at the meeting knew the danger all to well, as she had lost her daughter and her daughter's boyfriend there.

“My daughter Ellie drowned last summer. She was with the love of her life, Sean,” Jennifer Wright said. “It’s hard not knowing what happened to them. Did a strong gust of wind blow them off the cliff? Did they lose their footing? Did a huge wave knock them into the turbulent ocean below?”

“I do know that a wonderful summer day that started with blackberry picking, ended up horribly,” she added.

Some of the residents at the meeting said the park should be patrolled by police, others pushed for better fencing, bigger signs and even a memorial that shows just how many people have died crossing this fence.

The group all agreed, though, that something more must be done to express how dangerous the beautiful area can be.

“Clearly cable fences does not convey the risks,” Jennifer said. “It breaks my heart to know that two more people have died in Cape Kiwanda since Sean and Ellie. What can we do to prevent these further tragedies?”

Officials with Oregon State Parks said they will adjust some signs and temporary fencing in the next few days based on Thursday’s meeting, while they continue to work on a long term solution.

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