West Seattle, Washington
By Megan Sheppard
On the WSBeat, for West Seattle Blog
From reports on cases handled recently by Southwest Precinct officers:
*Thursday afternoon in Morgan Junction, the exhaust of one driver’s car was so thick that it seemed, to a passing officer, to be blinding the drivers who had the misfortune to be behind it. The officer made a U-turn to catch up to the driver, who simply hit the gas pedal (increasing the smoke) and refused to pull over until he reached his home on 47th SW. He was not carrying his license. A records check showed that he was wanted on three warrants: from Lynnwood ($5,100) for possessing drug paraphernalia), from Seattle for possession of cocaine, and from Seattle Municipal Court ($10,000) for assault. He was booked into King County Jail on the warrants and was cited for excessive smoke and for driving without a license.
(5 more summaries ahead:)Read More
Last night, we published a sort of a tribute to The Great Walk Home, endured by dozens, maybe hundreds, who just gave up on trying to navigate the roads via bus or car on Monday night. It’s also been pointed out that bicycles beat the gridlock too. West Seattleite Eric Shalit, above, has published a review of the gear that helped (including studded snow tires). You can read about it here.
And here’s a great tale of biking it home to West Seattle that snowy night, published at the Seattle Times (WSB partner) site, written by Times transportation reporter Mike Lindblom. His hook: The bike he used to beat the gridlock is a wide-tire model previously ridden only in Hawaii! (Mike also reported major chunks of the 5-section “Why Can’t Seattle Handle Snow?” story that’s been getting a lot of traction.)
It was the big harvest before the big freeze. Aviva Furman from Community Harvest of Southwest Seattle shares the photos, explaining that she was joined at one of their local food gardens last Friday by 12 students from Explorer West Middle School (WSB sponsor) and teachers Steve White and Kristin Moore, as they harvested vegetables before the temps dropped: 14 poujnds of kale, carrots, and rutabaga, subsequently donated to the White Center Food Bank. Aviva adds, “They also worked the soil to prepare it for future crops: turning in a cover crop of buckwheat, and composting sunflowers that were long past their prime. A special ingredient, coffee grounds, donated by the Westwood Village Starbucks, was added to the mix.”
As of this afternoon, West Seattle’s Joe McDermott is the newest member of the King County Council, representing District 8, which also includes White Center and Vashon/Maury Islands. In the county-provided photo above, he was sworn in by Clerk of the Council Anne Noris, hours after the November 2nd election results were certified. The official news release announcing his swearing-in quotes Councilmember McDermott as saying, “â€œI am honored the voters of the 8th Council District chose me to serve them in a position that has a long legacy of strong, effective leadership … We must work together to provide meaningful and efficient government services with an eye to the future. We cannot let today’s economic crisis keep us from meeting our commitments in regional planning, environmental stewardship and public safety.” McDermott spent the past decade in the State Legislature, in the State Senate since 2007, following seven years in the State House. On the nine-member County Council, he succeeds Jan Drago, appointed early this year after the November 2009 election moved Dow Constantine up to County Executive; this election was for the remaining year of Constantine’s unexpired term, so the position will be back on the ballot in November 2011. Final certified results of this election are here; McDermott had 68 percent of the vote, Diana Toledo – also a West Seattleite – 32 percent. They were the top two finishers from a field of four in the August primary.
Congratulations to 6 people associated with West Seattle programs/facilities who have been announced as nominees for the Seattle Parks and Recreation Department‘s annual Denny Awards for Outstanding Volunteer Stewardship. The Parks Department has just sent out a news release announcing nominees and that the awards will be revealed at a December 7th event on Lake Union – read on:Read More
(Refresh for latest pic of WS Bridge, looking eastbound, and 1st Ave. S. Bridge, more on the WSB Traffic cams page)
Starting this a little earlier than planned, as there are various things to note: South Seattle Community College is closing at 2 pm and canceling evening classes, for starters. This report will again be “stuck” to the top of the page, with newer news appearing below it for now. You can find the morning/midday/early-afternoon reader reports on road conditions by going here. If the clouds are worrying you, here’s the forecast as updated this morning:
MOSTLY CLOUDY WITH A CHANCE OF VERY LIGHT SNOW OR FLURRIES. NO ACCUMULATION EXPECTED.
2:34 PM: No road problems reported currently (or all day!), in case you were wondering. Also a reminder that both city libraries and community centers are closing at 5 pm.
4:48 PM UPDATE: No problems on the roads. Reminder that we have published our “who’s open Thanksgiving” list for restaurants, grocery stores, and coffee shops – find it here – and the West Seattle Holidays page has a few other Thanksgiving notes, such as holiday workouts. If you have to drive tomorrow morning to get to Grandma’s house (or anywhere else) for Thanksgiving, WSDOT warns that road ice is possible with temperatures still low and a “mix of rain or snow in the forecast.” (Since WSB is 24/7/365, if there’s anything you need to know in or around West Seattle, we’ll be here.)
5:01 PM UPDATE: There’s a new “winter weather advisory” in effect 6 pm tonight to 1 pm tomorrow, with that chance of light snow/flurries tonight/tomorrow morning, plus, once the temperatures warm tomorrow morning, “a chance of light freezing rain or light sleet.”
5:56 PM UPDATE: Metro will remain on snow routing through at least tomorrow morning. Tomorrow it’s on Sunday service; Friday it’s on “reduced weekday service.” And Thursday-Friday, there’s no King County Water Taxi (that goes for the shuttle buses too).
6:49 PM UPDATE: Via Facebook, Stacey reports some snowflakes in north West Seattle. Nothing down here so far.
Now that the weather’s easing a bit – not to trivialize the low temperature, but at least it’s not snowing/blowing, and the main roads have been trouble-free – a few Thanksgiving notes:
LIST OF ‘WHO’S OPEN IN WEST SEATTLE‘: Ace researcher Katie has been making the calls and we now have Version 1.0 of the list of which food stores, coffee shops, and restaurants are open tomorrow. A few places didn’t answer and are being checked today, but so far, here’s who reported they’re open, and when. (We expect to have this in map format later, and will add addresses but for your advance planning, we present the first-draft text list.) This also is linked from the WSB West Seattle Holidays page. (1:37 pm note: We’ve added several more establishments to the list, so it’s now version 1.1.)
FREE THANKSGIVING DINNERS: In addition to the traditional Tuxedos and Tennis Shoes Catering (WSB sponsor)-presented community meal tomorrow, noon-3 pm at The Hall at Fauntleroy (9131 California SW) in the old schoolhouse, there’s one more: The West Seattle Eagles (4426 California SW) invite one and all to their free Thanksgiving Dinner, even if you’re not a member, 2-5 pm tomorrow. These, too, are listed on the WSB West Seattle Holidays page, if you lose track later. P.S. The Hall at Fauntleroy will accept pie/cookie donations till 4 pm today, after 9 am tomorrow.
WHAT LOCAL FOOD BANKS NEED TODAY: We have checked with both. The West Seattle Food Bank (35th/Morgan) says they need BAKED GOODS – bread, rolls, pastries, that type of thing. They are open for donations right now and will be distributing food noon-3 pm; after that, they’re closed for the holiday weekends. The White Center Food Bank tells us they do NOT have any immediate needs, but if you or someone you know needs food, they will be open till 7 pm. (Both food banks, of course, can always use money – they have maximum bulk purchasing power with your donations – donate online to WS Food Bank here, WC Food Bank here.)
TWO BLOOD DRIVES IN WEST SEATTLE TODAY: Puget Sound Blood Center says two drives are happening right now, partly to make up for 20 canceled elsewhere because of the weather. Here’s the latest information – Jefferson Square till 3 pm, Westwood Village till 3 pm. Full details here.
For more holiday info – check the frequently updated WSB Holidays page – and if you have an event/activity/request for holiday help (we have a section on that too), please let us know.
An update from Puget Sound Blood Center – they’ve added a mobile drive in West Seattle today:
We are expecting a loss of 1200+ units this week due to the weather. Nearly 20 blood drives that have been canceled due to the icy weather. The majority of blood types are below operational levels with both O Negative and B Negative at Emergency Levels (less than a day supply). If at all possible, please donate today. Each and every donation really makes a huge difference when our community’s blood supply is this low. There are drives today near The Junction and Westwood:
When: Wednesday November 24th
Where: Jefferson Square- Bloodmobile on 42nd Ave SW at SW Alaska Intersection
Hours: 9:00 AM to 3:00 PM (closed 11:30-12:30)
When: Wednesday November 24th
Where: Westwood Shopping Center- Barton Entrance by Pier 1
Hours: 10:00 AM to 3:00 PM (closed 12-1pm)
For information about donating, contact Puget Sound Blood Center at 800-398-7888
From the Emergency Operations Center – publishing here till we find a link on the city website:
SDOT continues working to prevent freezing on snow routes:
Â· Currently the City has 17 trucks with salt spreaders and two flusher trucks deployed.
Â· Snow routes are in good condition.
Â· There was no significant re-freezing of cleared roadways during the past 24 hours.
Â· There are no significant problems on the snow route network.
Â· The Alaskan Way Viaduct and the West Seattle High Rise Bridge are bare and dry.
Â· Focus is on reopening closed roads. The Seattle Police Department and SDOT are working to review roads currently closed and will update the list online.
Â· The City will continue the same level of deployed vehicles for the morning commute; focus will be on efforts to prevent re-freezing, address trouble spots on Level 3 routes, and bring more roads off the closed list.
Â· Because of the possibility of precipitation today leading to the formation of black ice tonight, some roads will remain closed.
Â· 24 hour shifts will continue through Thursday, November 25.
SEATTLE PUBLIC UTILITIES
Â· Garbage, yard waste and recycling collection have been postponed in Seattle for a second day, due to dangerous road conditions; icy side streets prohibit safe collections. There will be no residential services on Wednesday, November 24.
Â· Collection services for commercial and multi-family accounts will be available on a limited basis Wednesday, November 24, where access allows.
Â· Customers whose containers were not collected on Monday, Tuesday or Wednesday of this week will have them collected next week on their regularly scheduled pick-up day, and will be allowed to set out double their normal amount of garbage, yard waste and recycling at no additional charge.
As a result of the traffic-related issues created by the snow and ice, the Seattle Police Department continues to manage snow-related incidents at the precinct level, reporting to the Emergency Operations Center. Staffing and call volume today have been comparable to normal operations. It is anticipated that SPD will return to normal operations tomorrow if conditions remain the same.
Several shelters will be available for people trying to avoid the cold overnight:
Â· The co-ed City Hall shelter, located at Fourth and James, 9 p.m. â€“ 6 a.m., capacity, 75 people;
Â· The Frye Hotel, for women only, at Third and Yesler, 8 p.m. to 8 a.m., capacity, 25 people.
Â· Starting today, the Seattle Center shelter building will be switched from the Pavilion to the Rainier Room (one of the Northwest rooms). Hours are 9 p.m. to 6 a.m.
The Seattle Center Centerhouse is open 7:00 a.m. â€“ 9:00 p.m. as a warming center.
Â· All locations of The Seattle Public Library, including the downtown Central Library, will be open from noon to 5 p.m., Wednesday, Nov. 24.
Â· The Green Lake Library was closed yesterday due to lack of staff availability because of the weather.
Â· Seattle Municipal Court will begin at 10 a.m. today.
â€¢ Parks and Recreation Community Centers, Discovery Park Environmental Learning Center, Camp Long Environmental Learning Center, and the Amy Yee Tennis Center will operate from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. today for drop-in activities.
Â· Pools will operate an adjusted schedule, please call the individual pool for programs and times, with the exception of Helene Madison Pool, which will be closed.
Â· Athletic fields will be closed Wednesday.
Â· School Age Care Programs cancelled
Â· Athletic programs are cancelled.
Â· Scheduled recreation programs and classes are cancelled.
Â· Swimming Lesson programs are cancelled.
Â· Langston Hughes Performing Arts Center is closed.
Â· Green Lake and Mt. Baker small craft centers are closed.
Â· Jefferson Golf Course is open for sledding.
Â· There are no outages. At the height of the storm, 1,500 customers were without power. Most were restored within eight hours. The remaining customers were restored before 8 p.m. Tuesday.
Â· The Fire Department added two aid cars to help out with an increased number of emergency medical responses over the past 48 hours.
Â· The department continues to increase staffing through Wednesday.
Â· Seattle Fire dispatched 507 emergency responses on Monday, approximately twice the normal number of calls received per day.
Â· All fire engines, trucks, medic units, and aid cars are chained up to allow access to emergencies.
Â· If Pipes Break or Freeze
Freezing weather is here. That means frozen and broken pipes are a possibility. If a water pipe breaks follow these steps:
o Immediately close the main shut-off valve to stop flooding. The shut-off valve can be indoors or outdoors â€“ usually in a basement, crawlspace or garage. If you cannot turn off the main shutoff valve, Seattle Public Utilities customers can call (206) 386-1800 and a crew will turn off the water at the meter for a standard service charge.
o Call a plumber to repair or replace the damaged section of pipe as soon as possible.
o Donâ€™t use hair dryers to thaw frozen pipes â€” you face the risk of electrocution!
Another holiday-help request – this is for Navos, the mental-health-care facility in West Seattle. From Alice Braverman:
The holidays can be a particularly difficult time for our clients and patients. All live at or near poverty level and many are estranged from their families. Both of these situations often occur as a result of having a serious mental illness. For those of you who want to help, we have created a list of items that would be very useful to our clients and patients, at this or any time of year.
For information about where to donate, or to host a drive at your place of employment or place of worship, please contact us at 206-933-7248 or firstname.lastname@example.org
HYGIENE KITS FOR ALL OF OUR LOW INCOME CLIENTS:
* Toothpaste, toothbrush and floss
* Feminine Hygiene Items
FOR RESIDENTS OF OUR SUPPORTED HOUSING PROGRAMS:
* Twin mattress
* New pillows
* New phone
* Kitchen stuff such as pots and pans, silverware
* Coffee maker
* Oven mitts and kitchen towels
* New shower curtains
* New twin sheet sets
* Boxes of tissue
* Canned and boxed goods
FOR OUR HOSPITALIZED PATIENTS:
* Wilson Evolution Basketballs(4 units are needed annually for Inpatient Services)
* Clay and Paint Supplies
* Used soft cover books (no romance)
* Hats and Gloves (for homeless discharge patients)
* New sweat pants and shirt sets (male and female)
* New L and XL women’s plain white underwear
* Women’s make up, finger nail polish, acetone, cotton swabs and q-tips
* Men’s face wash, deodorant, lotion
*The afternoon edition has just launched here*
(11:09 AM TOPLINE: No problems reported; bridge/Viaduct ‘bare/dry’ per city … Trash/recycling pickup is CANCELED … Most schools closed … Quick links below cams)
(Refresh for latest pic of WS Bridge, looking eastbound, and 1st Ave. S. Bridge, more on the WSB Traffic cams page)
One more icy commute before the holiday. Metro remains on snow routing; the West Seattle Water Taxi is back in service. Most schools are out; here’s the list. (By the way – the University of Washington changed its mind late last night and is now closed for the day.)
6:07 AM UPDATE: Just took a quick spin around online and so far no major problems reported in our area right now. 17 degrees at Sea-Tac at the top of the hour.
6:30 AM UPDATE: Thanks for again sharing road reports (and other updates) in the comments. We’re also monitoring, and posting updates to, Twitter and Facebook. The weather forecast looks the same as it did last night; the National Weather Service has renewed its “special weather statement,” warning of “sub-freezing” temperatures through Thanksgiving morning – again today, we won’t get past freezing, but tomorrow afternoon, the 40s should return.
6:39 AM UPDATE: Trash/recycling pickup POSTPONED again today – as it was yesterday – put out double next week; this just in from Seattle Public Utilities. (And if you have Thursday pickup, that’s already postponed till Friday, for the holiday.)
7:15 AM UPDATE: Starting to hear from some people with water trouble. Angela at 35th/112th has none. Someone on Twitter has frozen pipes. We’ll be checking with Seattle Public Utilities to see if they know of any major problems – if it’s just your house, though, the responsibility is yours. A few reminders originally posted yesterday: Today’s Rotary and Kiwanis meetings are canceled; Seattle Public Library branches will be open noon-5 pm. Also heard this morning from Allstar Fitness: Open regular hours but morning classes canceled, and SW Yancy is still very icy.
7:37 AM UPDATE: The city has just issued its latest roundup of service status. You can read the whole thing here; highlights – Viaduct/West Seattle Bridge “bare and dry”; roads considered “snow routes” are in “good” condition; community centers and Camp Long will be open 10 am-5 pm for drop-in activities but programs are canceled; the roundup also has advice about dealing with frozen/broken pipes!
8:04 AM UPDATE: Here’s that pipe advice, from SPU.
8:37 AM UPDATE: Still problem-free, roads and buses, per WSB commenters and the other streams we’re watching. Here’s our most-recent photos of nearby California/Thistle corner (both arterials) – typical, says the city, for major routes:
9:30 AM UPDATE: Still quiet!
11:09 AM UPDATE: From SDOT via Twitter: “SDOT has 12 pedestrian crews out clearing city owned sidewalks and landings right now.” We have “unstuck” this item so it’s no longer atop the page, but we will launch an evening-commute version after 3 pm, with other news higher up in the meantime. Once again, THANKS for sharing information photos, and for just being here.