(TOPLINE: Highland Park Way hill between SW Holden and West Marginal Way SW is closed because of a slide that happened around 5 am)
5:35 AM: A big Seattle Fire response is checking out a slide reported on the Highland Park Way hill near Holden. So far, they’re reporting no vehicles or structures involved, but some of the slide material is actually on the road. One texter reported a power outage; none has shown up on the Seattle City Light map yet. More to come.
5:42 AM: We have a crew headed that way. Meantime, more outage reports, mostly from Puget Ridge. And traffic is being kept off the hill. SFD crews are assessing the slide and whether it’s moving.
5:51 AM: Our crew has arrived and confirmed the road closure. Via scanner, we’ve heard that multiple power poles are “leaning” but intact. The slide is across most of HP Way at at least one point and though most of the SFD units are being dismissed because no rescuing is needed, the closure continues.
6 AM: City Light info for residents says 2,000 customers (homes and businesses) are out.
6:20 AM: SCL and SDOT are at the slide. If you are using Roxbury as an alternative, be aware that the 8th/Roxbury signal is reported to be out – and remember that intersections with nonfunctioning signals become all-way stops. Metro Route 131 is rerouted since it otherwise would use the HP Way hill. Some have reported their power’s back.
6:43 AM: Our crew at the scene has been told the closure will likely last at least through the entire morning commute – City Light is still working to locate the downed live wires, and until that’s done, engineers can’t assess the slide, which will have to be done before cleanup.
7:32 AM: City Light says via Twitter that the peak of the outage was 2,008 customers (homes/businesses) and that service has been restored to all but 380 customers. The hill remains closed.
7:49 AM: For those who asked about Sanislo Elementary on Puget Ridge, our crew went over to check. It does NOT have power but it IS open – the principal tells us that word of the outage didn’t get around in time for any other decisions to be made, and students started arriving. They’re hoping it won’t be too much longer. Now we’re headed back to HP Way hill to see if there’s an update on operations there.
8:26 AM: We’ll have some daylight photos shortly – the slide is out of cameraphone range but co-publisher Patrick Sand is headed back with images taken via long lens. He reports that it looks like a “tangled mess,” mostly across the uphill lanes, though somewhat obscured by fog. No update yet on how long it will take to clear – they’re still in assessing mode. Meantime, remember that having Highland Park Way hill unavailable is continuing to back up other outbound routes.
9 AM: Photos added – here’s how it looks from the top of the hill, with a long lens. (Note the streetlights at top left.)
We’ll continue to update here for now – if it looks like this is going to last for hours longer, we’ll switch to a midday update at some point.
10:03 AM: The power outage is finally on the SCL map. (Screengrab above)
10:23 AM: Thanks to commenters for reporting that most of the rest of the outage has ended – the SCL map confirms that. What we’re awaiting now is an update on how long the Highland Park Way hill is likely to remain closed.
11:59 AM: Still no new info from SDOT, only a reminder of the closure. We are headed back to the top of the hill to see what is (or isn’t) happening.
12:19 PM: Update from SDOT, which we’ll move to a new update soon as we get a new look at the slide zone:
SDOT continues to work with Seattle City Light at the site of the slide that occurred on Highland Park Way SW. A slide came down this morning above Highland Park Way SW, then a second slide came down, pushing material about 500 feet further, over Highland Park Way SW.
SDOT has cleared some of the material from the lower slide so SCL trucks can gain access. SCL is working to clear some trees that are pushing on some power poles. Geotech engineers are assessing the situation.
We expect Highland Park Way to remain closed through today and into tomorrow as more rain is expected to fall tonight into tomorrow.
1:15 PM: We’ve now launched a pm report and that’s where we’ll be updating this afternoon and into the pm commute.