9:38 AM: Between 2 and 5 am today, in below-freezing weather, 800 volunteers roamed King County for the annual One-Night Count of people sleeping outdoors. The results just announced: 2,594 men, women, and children were counted, “a small increase over those found without shelter last year,” according to the official post-count announcement, which explains that volunteers “counted people trying to survive in cars, tents, all night buses, select hospitals, or curled up in blankets under bridges or in doorways.” Guidelines for public discussion of the count do not allow specific locations to be reported, so we don’t know at this point if they visited the Nickelsville encampment in Highland Park, where one WSB Forums member who is a frequent visitor told us 90 people were staying as of a recent count. Last year’s countywide total was 2,442, and organizers also say it is perennially “an undercount of people without shelter on this night. Counters can reach only a portion of the geographic area of the county, and many homeless people sleep in hard-to-reach places.”
2:59 PM UPDATE: Here’s a breakdown of this morning’s count. There is no West Seattle category, but the list does mention 55 people counted in White Center.