(this coverage concluded around 1 pm; click here to go to Wednesday afternoon weather coverage)
The 4 am forecast puts a Winter Weather Advisory into effect until 10 am tomorrow. Who — and where — will see the first flakes? Till they fall, here are some hopefully helpful links:
SchoolReport.org (for Seattle Public Schools status, among others, including Highline and Vashon)
WSB Traffic page with additional cameras/links relevant to West Seattle commuters
City info on snow/ice routes/procedures (including link to plowed-routes map)
County info on snow/ice routes/procedures (including Metro reroutes)
Metro “adverse weather” service status
King County road alerts
WSDOT trouble spots via Twitter
Washington State Ferries “service bulletins”
Live 911 log for Seattle fire/medic calls
Holy Rosary sent e-mail to say that their school is open and on time.
West Seattle Montessori is open and on time with the possibility of an early dismissal if it starts snowing.
West Seattle Christian Preschool is closed.
The Tilden School is open and on time.
9:12 AM UPDATE: In case you’re at work outside West Seattle now and wondering – no flakes yet. Up north – different story; just saw a snow total report go by on TV – one spot in Skagit County has already had half a foot. Meantime, SDOT has sent an update with a reminder that, as we reported yesterday, you can call in about an iced-over non-arterial:
The Seattle Department of Transportation (SDOT) proactively positioned crews around the city this morning, with light snow forecast, ready to respond to snow and ice on major arterial streets if needed. During the day, many crews will proceed with normal street maintenance activities while continuing to carefully monitor roadway conditions. Heavier snowfall is forecast for late this afternoon. A full contingent of crews and snow/ice equipment will be deployed in the field in advance of the evening commute.
CLICK AHEAD TO READ THE REST OF OUR AS-IT-HAPPENED COVERAGE:
Seattle was being called “the hole in the doughnut” earlier today as snowfall hit all around the region, but skipped over the city itself. SDOT crews are not letting down their guard, however, and remain available to quickly respond to weather developments.
Today crews continue to clear high priority non-arterial streets of lingering snow and ice, and also public stairways and walkways at critical locations, on a case-by-case basis, in response to requests. SDOT’s trucks are not able to access some of Seattle’s narrow side streets. To submit a request, call 206.386.1218.
9:28 AM UPDATE: Seattle Parks sent word that swim lessons are canceled for the day, though if you want to just go swimming at Southwest Pool, it’s still open:
Swim lessons at Seattle Parks and Recreation pools are canceled today. Pools are open for drop-in programs, and community centers, environmental learning centers, and the Amy Yee Tennis Center are open. Swim lessons will resume when Seattle Public Schools reopen.
The “hole in the doughnut” phrase seems to be applying even immediately westward – there’s a big hole in the clouds to the west, looking toward Bremerton, with a sunbreak. Meteorologist Cliff Mass writes about it – and shows an amazing radar image – on his site. Meantime, if your office closed and you’re home, look on the bright side – extra time for holiday shopping you might have skipped after the weather turned bad last weekend, for example. On the practical side, we’re going to check around to see if the salt/deicer ever showed up at area stores; let us know if you find any – we’re not out of the woods, or snowflakes, yet.
9:41 AM UPDATE: McLendon’s in White Center (map) DID get some salt and deicer this morning but “get there as soon as possible, it’s going fast.” TrueValue in The Junction tells us they may get some tomorrow morning, weather permitting. Home Depot still out (unless you’re looking for sand – that, they have). If you haven’t been outside today – it’s comparatively WARM, even with the wind kicking up a bit. Here’s that hole in the clouds, from outside WSB’s Upper Fauntleroy HQ:
10 AM UPDATE: Watching a briefing on live tv by local transportation authorities downtown – SDOT boss Grace Crunican is speaking, and basically said what’s in the news release above – they’re getting to the side streets while they can (she’s a West Seattleite, by the way). She’s getting asked about West Seattle, in fact, and saying they’ve gone out for some repeat treatments on certain streets, “retraced our tracks,” adding that they’ve also worked with Metro to take care of streets they report as trouble spots. Her part of the briefing just ended; they’re talking now to other city leaders. Meantime, we’re also working on non-weather West Seattle news, so if you’re refreshing this page to check for updates, also check the rest of the site from time to time – should have our next non-weather story up by 10:30, and more to come.
10:22 AM UPDATE: A couple other notes from the ongoing city briefing – Fire Chief Gregory Dean reminds you to keep items away from heaters and check your smoke and carbon-monoxide alarms; if you know someone in need of social services (such as shelter for homeless people), call the 211 hotline. This briefing, by the way, was scheduled yesterday (we got the media advisory – it’s at the city’s new Emergency Operations Center downtown), and no doubt they were expecting that by now they’d be sharing information on some kind of snow event – but instead, it’s taken on more of a preventive tone; you can get lots of that info directly from takewinterbystorm.org.
10:26 AM UPDATE: From Andy Ryan at Seattle Public Utilities — today’s trash pickups are on schedule, and as for the rest of the week:
Thursday and Friday – Customers should set out their materials on their collection day and leave the materials out for the following day if needed. If we do not service by end of the following day, then customers should bring in the materials and set-out on next scheduled collection day.
If you missed our update last night, everyone whose Monday collection was missed in West Seattle should bring it back in; they’ll pick up trash (with double allowance), recycling, and yard waste NEXT Monday, for those customers.
10:51 AM UPDATE: The new forecast is out from the National Weather Service. An excerpt:
REST OF TODAY…SNOW AND RAIN. SNOW ACCUMULATION UP TO 1 INCH…MAINLY FROM TACOMA SOUTH. HIGHS IN THE MID 30S. SOUTHWEST WIND 10 TO 15 MPH.
TONIGHT…RAIN EARLY IN THE EVENING…CHANGING TO SNOW SHOWERS DURING THE EVENING. SNOW ACCUMULATION OF 1 TO 3 INCHES…HEAVIEST ON HILLS AND NORTH OF SEATTLE. LOWS IN THE MID 20S TO LOWER 30S. SOUTHWEST WIND 10 TO 15 MPH.
“Chance of snow” is mentioned for Sunday/Monday.
11 AM UPDATE: Will post this separately too – Seattle Public Schools spokesperson Patti Spencer just confirmed, TONIGHT’S SCHOOL BOARD MEETING IS ON. Important for many West Seattleites going because there’ll be an update on the school-closure process; we’ll be there too.
11:30 AM UPDATE: Some precipitation is moving in – and it looks like RAIN right now – good news for street-clearing now, provided subfreezing temps don’t return later …
12:01 PM UPDATE: We’ll launch an afternoon post by 1 pm. Meantime, if you are home, and it’s raining where you are — co-publisher Patrick reports it seems to be strongest only as far north as Brandon (map) — the shoveling’s a lot easier, now that it’s becoming slush. (If you’re not home, it MIGHT just all be gone before you return.)
12:58 PM UPDATE: Bulletin – sunshine.