day : 11/03/2017 10 results

UPDATE: Deadly motorcycle crash on NB 99; fifth rider killed in 5 years at Viaduct’s south end

(UPDATED 4:35 PM SUNDAY with new information from SPD)

10:30 PM: Seattle Police say they’re investigating a deadly motorcycle crash on the NB Alaskan Way Viaduct. Exactly where, we don’t know yet, but the eastbound bridge exit to NB 99 is reported to be closed. More information when we get it.

10:52 PM: SDOT confirms that the NB 99 closure starts at the West Seattle Bridge. A traffic camera indicates the crash happened on the rise to the elevated section of the Viaduct, in the stadium zone.

(Added: Traffic-camera image showing SPD investigator working at crash scene on NB Viaduct)
11:16 PM: This is at least the fifth deadly motorbike crash in that area of 99 in five years. From our archives, a crash killed a 34-year-old man in 2014, also on the northbound side, where 30-year-old Nathaniel Hammer died in 2013; less than 24 hours after that crash, a 52-year-old motor-scooter rider was killed in a crash. On the southbound curve at that end, 48-year-old West Seattle musician/therapist Lisa Mills was killed in 2012.

1:50 AM The highway has reopened.

ADDED 4:35 PM SUNDAY: From SPD Blotter:

Police were called to investigate a fatality collision on the Alaskan Way Viaduct around 9:40 p.m. last night. Preliminary indications are that speed played a factor in the collision.

According to witnesses, a 22-year-old man was traveling in the northbound lanes of the viaduct when he lost control of his motorcycle, struck a concrete barrier, and fell to the surface streets below.

Seattle Fire Department medics provided emergency care at the scene, but were unable to revive the man.

Traffic Collision Investigation detectives responded to the scene, processed the collision site and collected evidence.

This is an active and ongoing investigation. Information is subject to change as the investigation proceeds.

ADDED: The rider has been identified as 21-year-old Isaac Barajas.

In case you missed it: WSDOT’s 360-degree video of tunnel & machine

We didn’t get a chance to write about this back on Thursday when WSDOT made it public, but here on a quiet Saturday night, we’re mentioning it in case you missed it: A 360-degree video tour of the Highway 99 tunneling machine and the in-progress tunnel. The 5-minute tour is narrated/hosted by Joe Hedges, current Alaskan Way Viaduct Program Administrator. Here’s the update that accompanied the video (including a reminder of how to watch/interact with 360-degree videos, if you haven’t tried it before).

The machine now has less than two blocks left to dig; here’s the page with the latest stats and map. When digging’s done, of course, there will still be a lot left to do – as the machine is broken into what WSDOT describes as “small pieces” over the course of several months, construction will continue in the tunnel, including road-deck-building (part of that, and some preparation, is shown in the video above).

Also yet to be settled before the tunnel opens – currently projected as early 2019 – is what the tunnel toll will be. That remains in the hands of the Washington State Transportation Commission, whose tolling plans for the year ahead are in this report. No date yet for them to make a decision; they meet monthly – next meeting March 21-22, though the agenda’s not up yet.

P.S. The summary of last weekend’s Alaskan Way Viaduct inspection isn’t out yet but should appear soon on this page, where other results are listed.

Gathering on March 18th to remember Esther Bath, 1920-2017

Family and friends will gather next Saturday to remember Esther Bath on what would have been her 97th birthday. Here’s the remembrance being shared with the community:

ESTHER HANNAH BATH – March 18, 1920 – January 25, 2017

Esther Daniel, the youngest of six children, was born in Detroit, Michigan. Her parents, Edward and Christine Daniel, had farmed their land and built a beautiful home using timber from the property they cleared. The entire family worked hard together and enjoyed each other’s company. Esther’s mother had only been able to attend school for a short time, but would recite long poems while she and her daughter cooked.

Esther attended Cass Technical High School in Detroit during the 1930s. It provided a rigorous study of fashion illustration and design, which remained a special interest throughout Esther’s life. She then continued her education at Wayne State University, where she met Russ Bath, another Detroit native. Russ dropped out of medical school in hopes of becoming a naval aviator. While he went through flight training in Pensacola, Florida, Esther finished her Bachelor of Fine Arts Degree. They were married in June of 1942.

Since the country was at war, Russ was stationed first in Pensacola, then Kansas City, and finally San Francisco. Russ was gone for long periods of time, but Esther kept busy gardening, sewing, volunteering with the Red Cross, exploring her new surroundings, and by 1944, taking care of son David. In 1946, daughter Chris was born, and Russ moved the family to Seattle, where he flew for the newly formed West Coast Airlines. Over the next four years Mary and Rusty completed the family, which had made West Seattle its permanent home.

Raising four children was a full-time job, but Esther managed to participate in the Arboretum Foundation, the Catherine B. Baker Art Club, the West Seattle Garden Club, and other organizations. When Esther first arrived in Seattle, she was fascinated by the native plants of the Northwest, so different from those in Michigan. Rhododendrons were of special interest and she grew many from cuttings, using them in the landscape of her Fauntleroy home. Bonsai trees, both in pots and in the ground, were another way she expanded her agricultural interest. Once the children were grown, Russ and Esther had the opportunity to travel throughout the world, which they both thoroughly enjoyed.

Esther was a remarkable woman who stayed active until the end of her life. She was a devoted wife to Russ (deceased); a beloved Mother to David (deceased), Chris, Mary (Frank), and Russ (Christine); an adoring Grandma to Christine (Brian), Ken (Carol), Jeanette, and David (Carmen); and an extraordinary Great-Grandma to Braxas and Connor.

Remembrances may be sent to:
The Arboretum Foundation
2300 Arboretum Drive E
Seattle, WA 98112-2300

A time to remember Esther Bath will be Saturday, March 18th, from 12-2 pm at The Kenney, 7125 Fauntleroy Way SW.

(WSB publishes West Seattle obituaries by request, free of charge. Please e-mail the text, and a photo if available, to editor@westseattleblog.com)

West Seattle Troop 282’s Saturday service

Thanks to Kevin McMahan for the photos and report:

Scouts from West Seattle’s Troop 282 were working in the rain for seven hours today on a conservation service project at the Van Asselt Community Center. Their efforts count toward the prestigious 50 Miler Award which they are working toward. Special thanks to the Seattle Parks Department and Mr. Paul Smith for his mentorship.


The troop is in its seventh decade, according to its online history.

TRAFFIC ALERT UPDATE: Highland Park Way open again after tree trouble


(Added 4:22 pm – reader photo – thank you!)

3:50 PM: Avoid Highland Park Way hill (between West Marginal Way SW and SW Holden) for a while – we have multiple reports (thank you!) of at least one tree down across part of the road. Heading out for a look and will update.

3:58 PM: More messages, and the scanner, confirm that the road is currently fully closed northbound (downhill).

4:22 PM: Added a reader photo, which confirms, in case you wondered, this is NOT the same spot as last month’s slide – it’s on the south side of the road, just southwest of SW Othello. The slide was on the northeast side of the road.

6:12 PM: SDOT says Highland Park Way has fully reopened.

Local students march in St. Patrick’s Day Parade 2017

Despite the downpour, today’s St. Patrick’s Day Parade participants marched, rode, and rolled down 4th Avenue downtown at midday today. Thanks to Bill Schrier for the photos above – the West Seattle High School Marching Band – and below – the Denny International Middle School Band, behind a couple paraders from a galaxy far, far away:

According to the parade marching order, two Star Wars groups were scheduled! So was the Chief Sealth International High School Marching Band, but we don’t have a photo of them yet (editor@westseattleblog.com if you do – thank you!).

Off West Seattle shores: USS Independence, scrapyard-bound


(Reader photo – thanks! – from Upper Alki, added 1:34 pm)

1:05 PM: Thanks to everyone who’s messaging us that an aircraft carrier, under tow, is visible right now from Beach Drive, even through the murk. It’s the decommissioned-since-1998 USS Independence, headed for the scrapyard. We’re off to try for a photo.

1:30 PM: It’s now passing south Bainbridge, more clearly in view from Constellation Park south of Alki Point. Just over two and a half years ago, another decommissioned carrier, the USS Constellation, passed West Seattle shores while also on its way to a Texas scrapyard.

1:40 PM: According to MarineTraffic.com, the orange tug is the 348-foot Dino Chouest. The Lindsey Foss is also shown as being with the Independence (which itself does not show on MT). Visible from Alki Beach now, and picking up speed.


(WSB photo from west end of Alki Beach Park)

According to the Kitsap Sun, the USS Kitty Hawk is now the only inactive aircraft carrier remaining in Bremerton, and it’s being kept in reserve until the USS Gerald R. Ford is in service (likely later this year).

White Center Warriors: New wrestling club in West Seattle


(Photos by Colleen Huynh)

Heard about the White Center Warriors? It’s a new wrestling club that just started twice-weekly practices in West Seattle, and Joey Richards e-mailed to share the news:

Our club welcomes warriors of all ages, male and female, experienced or not.

The purpose of the club is to help introduce the sport of wrestling to the community, as well as train our youth self-control, respect, and discipline.

There is a 2-week free trial; after that, there is a one time $35 club fee. We practice from 6-8 pm every Tuesday and Thursday at Chief Sealth International High School.

No advance signup is required – if you’re interested, just show up for practice. The school is at 2600 SW Thistle; the gym is on the southeast side of the campus, north of the parking lot.

Live/work in Admiral? Join your neighborhood group’s conversation with police

(WSB photo from March 2016, ANA president Larry Wymer at left, CPT Officer Jon Flores at right)

Just in, the plan for next Tuesday night’s Admiral Neighborhood Association meeting. In the spotlight, your local Southwest Precinct Community Police Team officer. Here’s the announcement from ANA president Larry Wymer:

COMMUNITY POLICING UPDATE

7:00 pm Tuesday, March 14, 2017

Officer Jon Flores – Community Police Team (CPT) Officer with the Seattle Police Department – returns to update the neighborhood on the state of policing in Admiral, with an open Q&A session to listen to any of our concerns, and answer any questions we might have.

We will also address and discuss a number of issues of interest to Admiral, and some interesting suggestions for consideration, including:

Admiral Urban Village Upzone – Follow up community input including potentially a collective letter from ANA.
Expansion of ‘Sphere of Influence’ for Admiral neighborhood (as our Association recognizes it) towards the southeast (35th & 34th Streets).
Pedestrian Safety in Admiral – signage/flashing signage, painted or perhaps lighted crosswalks.
King County Chelan CSO (Combined Sewer Overflow) Control Project

The ANA meets at The Sanctuary at Admiral, at 2656 42nd Ave SW. Our monthly meetings are held the 2nd Tuesday of each month at 7:00 pm. Everyone is welcome to attend.

Here’s our coverage of the meeting a year ago which also spotlighted the CPT and local crime/safety.

Morning to night, what’s happening on your West Seattle Saturday


(Alki Statue of Liberty, photographed Friday evening by Greg Snyder)

Happy Saturday! First, a transit note:

METRO SERVICE CHANGE: This starts today. Here’s our story from earlier this month about what’s scheduled to change in West Seattle.

Now, highlights for today and tonight, from the WSB West Seattle Event Calendar:

CUB SCOUTS GOING DOOR TO DOOR: Arbor Heights Cub Scout Pack 799 is going around with doorhangers today, explaining that they will return next Saturday (March 18th) to pick up food donations.

WEST SIDE PRESBYTERIAN GARAGE SALE: Second and final day of the big garage sale at West Side Presbyterian Church, 9 am-2 pm. Bake sale too! (3601 California SW)

SOUTH DELRIDGE COMMUNITY GROUP CLEANUP: Just one hour can make a big difference. Join the South Delridge Community Group 10 am-11 am for their monthly community cleanup. (Alley between 16th and 17th, Henderson to Barton)

HIGH-SCHOOL BASEBALL: Noon at Southwest Athletic Complex, the Chief Sealth International High School Seahawks – who won their home opener on Friday – play Eisenhower. (2801 SW Thistle)

FREE SATURDAY AFTERNOON KINDERMUSIK: Bring your kid(s) to My Three Little Birds (WSB sponsor) for the return of free Saturday afternoon Kindermusik, 12:30 pm. (6959 California SW)

LOCAL BANDS IN ST. PATRICK’S DAY PARADE: As previewed here earlier this week, the marching bands from West Seattle HS, Chief Sealth IHS, and Denny International Middle School are listed among the participants in today’s St. Patrick’s Day Parade downtown. (NB on 4th Ave. from James)

WELCOME ROAD WINERY: Tasting room for Welcome Road Winery (WSB sponsor) is open 1-7 pm on Saturdays. (3804 California SW)

VISCON CELLARS: Tasting room for Viscon Cellars (WSB sponsor) is open 2-7 pm on Saturdays. (5910 California SW)

PRINCESS BALL: 3:30-5:30 pm at the VFW Hall in The Triangle – details including ticket info here. (3601 SW Alaska)

LIONS CLUB ST. PATRICK’S DAY DINNER: 5:30 pm at the Senior Center/Sisson Building, the West Seattle Lions Club‘s annual dinner/karaoke event. More info here – call to RSVP if you can! (4217 SW Oregon)

THE SLAGS WITH EEK-A-MARK & FRIENDS: 8 pm at Poggie Tavern. No cover. 21+. (4717 California SW)

THREE BANDS: Pilot to Bombardier, The Problem, Ben Mohr in a night of rock at Parliament Tavern. 9 pm. $5 cover. 21+. (4210 SW Admiral Way)

And remember to spring forward …

DAYLIGHT SAVING TIME BEGINS: 2 am Sunday, it will suddenly be 3 am Sunday.

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