(Top L, north of 1st Av. S. Bridge; top R, 1st @ Holgate; below L, I-5 on south end of downtown; below R, 12th headed for bridge to Beacon Hill, where there’s alternate WS Bridge access)
Back on commute patrol, one last time. It’s been raining seriously for a few hours now and very sloppy out there – so that will compound matters. The high bridge is backed up EASTBOUND right now, so if you have to leave West Seattle, consider an alternate (we’re checking how the alternates are doing). Updates to come!
4:10 PM UPDATE: The problem on the eastbound high bridge is described as a car fire. (a few minutes later) The fire trucks have now cleared, still a police car in the outside lane. … As for the “low bridge,” ADD says the traffic headed that way is “inching along” slowly.
4:27 PM UPDATE: Our roving crew confirms the low bridge is busy but moving. They have now moved onto 4th Ave. So., which is moving reasonably well right now.
4:54 PM UPDATE: Rain lifting, breeze kicking up. The eastbound bridge is still backed up. If you commute out of West Seattle, either wait or try a southern route like 1st Avenue South Bridge. Busy coming off the low bridge too – here’s a camera from its west end:
5:13 PM UPDATE: One WSB’er on a bus is about 12 minutes behind so far. Remember that Metro does have extra buses it can plug in here and there if a route gets backed up too far. If traffic kept you from making it to the West Seattle High School-Seattle Prep football postseason game at Memorial Stadium, we’re tweeting it live – @wsblive. If you are going to have to go over the “low bridge,” note that it’s opened just after 6 pm every day this week – the commitment was for openings to be avoided 3-6 pm.
5:26 PM: Multiple reports the Water Taxi is stalled. It was en route to Seacrest. Also word from Tracy Taylor at KING 5 that there’s a stall on Northbound I-5 near the West Seattle Bridge exit – not sure how close but it can’t make the slow eastbound WS Bridge any better… (added) Rachel Marie is said to be moving now (WS Water Taxi) but slowly. Checking with King County on what’ll be done about it for commuters.
5:36 PM: We don’t have this officially from the county but at least two people have said Water Taxi service from downtown to West Seattle is canceled till 7:30 pm. Let us know if you are at the dock and hearing anything. … update: Passengers tell us they are hearing this directly from crew. Rachel Marie IS proceeding slowly to the West Seattle side. But if you were going to take WT from downtown, we’d advise a bus home instead – though one West Seattleite says he’s going to try the WT to Vashon, and then WSF from Vashon back across to Fauntleroy…
5:43 PM: King County DOT confirms that there’ll be no West Seattle Water Taxi service till at least 7:15. Melissa Ann, the Vashon boat, will be moved over after that. You’ll recall that Melissa Ann handled the Monday morning commute as “Viadoom” week started, because Rachel Marie broke down sometime Sunday (apparently not with passengers aboard, the news came around midevening). Then Melissa Ann will be on the WS runs for the last weekend of the season (Vashon’s WT doesn’t run on weekends, anyway).
5:55 PM: The RM did make it back to the dock, so its passengers are now on the last leg of their trip home. Conflicting reports now on when service will resume. As for everything else – southbound I-5 is reported to be sludgy; the commute overall is just not going too well, so if you haven’t left yet, have patience, or maybe better yet, have dinner and leave MUCH later. (Added – photo by Katie Meyer for WSB, Rachel Marie after arrival at Seacrest)
6:03 PM: New estimate, 7:45 pm departure from Pier 50 downtown for the next WT. Meantime, some commenters say they ran from Pier 50 to go catch 37 bus home, and it’s half an hour late.
6:19 PM: Everything else is slow out there. Aside from the Water Taxi, no particular problems. … (minutes later) Except for a power outage on Alki. Will start a separate stry on that.
6:45 PM: One place REALLY not to be – southbound I-5. WSDOT says it’s backed up from the West Seattle Bridge to Shoreline.
7:11 PM: That stretch is getting a little faster, WSDOT says, but they just reported via Twitter that there’s a lane-blocking crash on NB I-5 at the West Seattle Bridge ramp.
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