West Seattle power-outage update: 116 homes/businesses

July 31, 2015 at 8:11 am | In Utilities, West Seattle news | 6 Comments

8:11 AM: Thanks to the texter who just pointed this out: Seattle City Light‘s outage map shows 121 homes/businesses without power right now in the Seacrest Park vicinity and along Harbor Avenue for a stretch eastward. They’re hoping to have it back by 10:30 am or so, but as always, that’s just a guesstimate. We’re headed that way to check on effects.

8:39 AM: While the outage map shows Seacrest, we checked at Marination – no problem there. Still checking elsewhere. No cause listed yet; we’ve seen at least one City Light crew in the area:

9:01 AM: Moondrop Coffee and Tea across from Seacrest has a note on its door saying it’s closed because of the outage. The City Light map now says “bird/animal” as the cause (and commenter Wes C. Addle backs that up), with an 11:45 am guesstimate for restoration, and a slight downgrade of affected customers to 116.

FOLLOWUP: City hearing examiner upholds decision approving cell antennas on Alki apartment building

July 30, 2015 at 5:04 am | In Utilities, West Seattle news | 11 Comments

The decision is in for a citizens-vs.-city case we reported here in May, the appeal of a Department of Planning and Development decision allowing 12 new Verizon antennas on the roof of an Alki apartment building. As reported here in May, a group of neighbors voicing health and aesthetic concerns banded together as “Stop Alki Cell Towers” and challenged the approval, also launching a publicity campaign that included a protest.

Last week, they argued their case before city Hearing Examiner Sue Tanner in a daylong hearing downtown (you can read the minutes and listen to audio of the hearing by going into the case file on the city website). Tanner published her decision yesterday (Wednesday, July 29th).

She noted that “Stop Alki Cell Towers” withdrew all but one issue at the appeal hearing, the issue alleging that the project would break city rules by being “substantially detrimental” to the “residential character” of the neighborhood and that was not the “least intrusive” potential location. In her ruling, Tanner went over the reasons why Verizon wound up with this building and also said the group presented no evidence proving the claim that the antennas would be “detrimental,” so she upheld the city’s decision approving the installation. Read her decision in its entirety here. If the group wants to continue its challenge, it will have to take the city to court.

Emergency repair work this weekend at Murray CSO Control Project

July 17, 2015 at 6:31 pm | In Utilities, West Seattle news | No Comments

The biggest piece of equipment at the site of the Murray Combined Sewer Overflow Control Project across from Lowman Beach needs emergency repairs, according to King County, so they’re going to work on it this weekend. That’s explained in the alert notice you can see above (or here, if you can’t see the Scribd embed). It means the site will be “busier and noisier” than it usually is on weekends, with work starting at 9 am tomorrow. The project involves a million-gallon storage tank that’ll reduce combined-sewer overflows into Puget Sound and is scheduled to be finished next year.

UPDATE: Cellular equipment work planned on utility poles in West Seattle neighborhoods

July 9, 2015 at 4:06 pm | In Utilities, West Seattle news | 11 Comments

4:06 PM THURSDAY: Just in from the city:

Seattle City Light will be supporting enhanced cellular and data services in various Seattle neighborhoods by upgrading electronic equipment on 49 existing network sites on utility poles. …

Highlights from the flier:

· The project is an expansion of existing communications networks and the equipment modifications will increase public safety and enhanced-911 capabilities. The work will also improve wireless services to areas, allowing for enhanced connectivity and faster 4G service. See the maps on the fliers for approximate construction work areas.

· Construction will begin during the week of July 13, 2015 and will last approximately seven weeks. Daily work hours are planned from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

· During this project, City Light crews will also have the opportunity to upgrade its infrastructure and replace poles that are in poor condition.

· There are no maintenance power outages planned.

· Some traffic and parking impacts are expected in the immediate work areas. Crews will be careful to try and maintain access to driveways.

From separate notification flyers you can see in this 20-page PDF – interspersed with other parts of the city (we’ll try to separate out the West Seattle flyers later if we get time) – here are the three groups of areas where City Light says crews will be working in West Seattle:

 16th Ave SW near SW Brandon St
 16th Ave SW near SW Morgan St
 SW Holden St near 12th Ave SW
 9th Ave SW near SW Cloverdale St
 8th Ave SW between SW Barton St and SW Cambridge St
 The intersection of 4th & 6th Ave S at Myers Way S

 Fauntleroy Pl SW near SW Cloverdale St
 SW Barton St near SW Henderson St
 45th Ave SW near Kilbourne Ct SW
 Marine View Dr SW near SW 101st St
 Marine View Dr SW near SW 104th St

 55th Ave SW near SW Andover St
 48th Ave SW near SW Genesee St
 SW Snoqualmie St near 57th Ave SW
 SW Edmunds St near 48th Ave SW
 SW Hudson St near SW Jacobsen Rd
 46th Ave SW near SW Findlay St
 Atlas Place SW near Beach Dr SW

We’ve sent some followup questions to City Light and will add any additional information we get.

ADDED FRIDAY: We asked City Light a few followup questions. SCL’s Scott Thomsen replied, “These 49 locations have existing cellular antennas on them. The project will replace those existing antennas, which are about 10 years old, with new, upgraded equipment. In most instances, this will not add any height to the pole. A few that are located on streetlights will add 4 feet of height. In each of those cases, the provider must get a conditional use permit from the Department of Planning and Development. The antennas on utility poles are being mounted on the sides of the poles. The old antennas stick out about a foot from the pole. The new ones stick out about 4 inches.”

Less rain, more use leads city to downgrade ‘water-supply outlook’

July 8, 2015 at 3:44 pm | In Utilities, West Seattle news | 14 Comments

(ADDED: WSB photo, dried-out slopes beneath Myrtle Reservoir water towers)
Please use water “wisely,” the city is imploring you, as it downgrades the official “water-supply outlook” because of high temperatures, low rainfall, and increased water use. It’s **not** calling for restrictions, yet, but Seattle Public Utilities is making some water-management changes – read on:

Click to read the rest of Less rain, more use leads city to downgrade ‘water-supply outlook’…

West Seattle power outages: 2 small ones right now

July 2, 2015 at 9:05 pm | In Utilities, West Seattle news | Comments Off

9:05 PM: Seattle City Light is working on two small outages in West Seattle right now – a texter tipped us to the one affecting nine households in the 11th/12th/Cambridge/Roxbury vicinity; no cause yet, but our tipster says they heard a loud noise just before the power went out on their block. Looking at the SCL outage map, we also note one in the 20th/Kenyon area, affecting three customers, blamed on “bird/animal.”

12:34 PM: Just checked the map – both outages are over.

Murray CSO Control Project entering next phase: Pipe replacement under Beach Drive

June 30, 2015 at 6:30 pm | In Utilities, West Seattle news, West Seattle traffic alerts | Comments Off

Another update from King County, whose reps warn that Lowman Beach access is going to get even tougher in the weeks ahead:

King County contractors for the Murray CSO Control project will begin replacing an eight-inch water pipe in Beach Drive SW this week. The work requires excavators, trucks, and a crane to work in Beach Drive SW for about a month.

The work will create traffic congestion and delays, especially south of the Lincoln Park Way SW intersection on Beach Dr. SW. Flaggers will guide traffic around the work site. Emergency and local access on Beach Dr. SW will be maintained. All parking will be closed along Beach Drive SW south of Lincoln Park Way SW. Steel plates will cover the work area in the road outside of work hours. The road will be patched after the pipe is installed and fully restored at the end of the project.

Installing the new pipe will not affect water service to neighbors. Connecting the new pipe will require a service outage later this summer for Beach Drive SW residents south of the Lincoln Park Way intersection. More information will be provided before that work occurs.

Crews will continue building the underground storage tank while the water pipe installation occurs.

Thank you for your ongoing patience during construction. Please direct any concerns or inquiries to the project hotline: 206-205-9186.

TRAFFIC ALERT: Murray CSO project moves out into the streets

June 12, 2015 at 9:08 pm | In Utilities, West Seattle news, West Seattle traffic alerts | 2 Comments

That’s an official alert that you should read if you are likely to travel through or near Lowman Beach, the north end of Lincoln Park, or 48th SW/Lincoln Park Way/Beach Drive SW in that area any time in the next few weeks. It’s about the Murray Combined Sewer Overflow Project‘s next phase, starting Monday, which includes work in the streets as well as work on the million-gallon tank across the street from Lowman Beach Park. Please note that the alert includes words of warning for bicycle riders and bus riders, as well as drivers.

Use Seattle City Light’s eBilling system? ‘Technical error’ alert

May 31, 2015 at 2:38 pm | In Utilities, West Seattle news | 15 Comments

Sent this afternoon by Seattle City Light:

On Thursday, May 28, Seattle City Light discovered that certain customers who were billed on May 27 accidentally received incorrect billing statements through the eBilling online payment service. No Social Security number, bank account, credit card, or debit card information was involved, and this will not result in any disruption of service to customers. Any payments customers made were applied to the correct accounts.

The problem was caused by an internal, technical error. We are investigating and working with a team of specialists to determine what happened. We will provide an update when further information is available.

Until this technical error has been resolved, the eBilling system has been taken offline. However, customers may still make an online payment through the “one-time payment” system on our website, which has not been affected. Our call center staff will be available to answer questions on Sunday from noon to 5 p.m., and during normal operating hours Monday through Friday.

We sincerely apologize for any inconvenience this might cause our customers. We appreciate our customers’ patience as we work to resolve this issue.

We asked SCL spokesperson Scott Thomsen how many people were affected; he says they don’t know yet, but “It was limited to some customers within the May 27 billing run” – (added) an average daily billing run could have 30,000 customers – and if they determine your bill was involved, you should get e-mail (updated) OR postal mail from City Light – depending on what kind of contact info they have for you.

West Seattle road work: SW Orchard lane closure continuing

May 24, 2015 at 12:17 pm | In Delridge, Utilities, West Seattle news | 5 Comments

Looking ahead to next week, and a few weeks beyond: Seattle Public UtilitiesEmily Reardon sent word going into the holiday weekend that its work at Delridge/Orchard isn’t over yet:

Quick update re. SPU’s ongoing sewer improvement project near Delridge Way SW and SW Orchard St. The daytime single lane restriction on SW Orchard Street (east of Delridge Way SW) will remain in place off-and-on through mid-June as crews complete sidewalk work and paving. The lane will remain closed Monday through Saturday, 7:30 a.m. – 4 p.m., and will be opened to traffic during non-work hours. During the closure, all westbound traffic will be diverted to the eastbound lane with the assistance of a traffic flagger.

The project page for this site, upgrading the combined-sewer-overflow-reducing facilities, ” target=”_blank”>is here.

Drought declaration statewide; city says Seattle water supply OK

May 15, 2015 at 1:52 pm | In Utilities, West Seattle news | 11 Comments

(State-provided map, obtained via Flickr. Pink counties [all of WA] = drought)
You might be wondering how Governor Inslee‘s statewide drought declaration will affect you. Not much in terms of routine water use, according to the city. Here’s what Seattle Public Utilities is saying:

Seattle Public Utilities (SPU) said today there are no plans at this time to raise drinking water rates in the event conservation efforts, prompted by a statewide drought, cause a decline in Utility revenues.

Earlier this year, Seattle City Council adopted a two-year plan that holds water rate increases to 1.7 percent for 2016 and 2.7 percent for 2017. SPU Director Ray Hoffman said that unless there is a gigantic drop in water usage, that rate plan will not change.

“Unlike much of the rest of the state, Seattle has been able to hold lots of water in our mountain reservoirs, and we have told our customers they can expect a normal water summer,” Hoffman said.

“As always, we are asking people to use water wisely, but even if our revenues decline dramatically as a result of conservation efforts, the rates adopted for the next two years are protected by a $28 million contingency fund designed to bring predictability and stability to water bills,” Hoffman said.

Seattleites already use less water than most cities in the country. In the unlikely event of a large decline in water usage, SPU’s first action would be to tap into its rate stabilization fund. Beyond that, options for meeting that long-term fixed revenue requirement could include canceling capital improvement projects or raising rates.

Nonetheless, that doesn’t mean you should just use water with abandon. Here are some easy ways to use less.

FOLLOWUP: Date changes, comment responses for Delridge/Orchard CSO project

April 26, 2015 at 8:39 pm | In Delridge, Utilities | 2 Comments

New information for traffic effects related to the ongoing Delridge/Orchard Combined Sewer Overflow (CSO) 2 facility project. Seattle Public Utilities says the SW Myrtle daytime westbound lane closure at 24th SW announced for this week have moved up a day and will be happening on Tuesday/Wednesday (April 28-29) instead. (Flow-monitoring equipment is being installed.) SPU spokesperson Emily Reardon also had answers for two topics that came up in comments on the previous report – first, resulting road changes:

this project narrowed the roadway to two standard-width east-west lanes on SW Orchard, and extended the curb bulb at Orchard and Dumar. These changes allow for new sidewalks and ADA curb ramps along Orchard. The intersection of Delridge Way SW and SW Orchard St. remains largely unchanged. Crews have not yet completed the lanes or added roadway striping. This new roadway configuration is an SDOT-approved design.

The project overview flyer mentions that work.

Another commenter had wondered about an odd color in Longfellow Creek and whether it was related to the CSO work. From Reardon: “I checked with our construction crew and confirmed that no sediment from this project has been released into Longfellow Creek. Sometimes, different colors in creeks in the area can be naturally occurring, but they can also be a sign of a problem upstream … If residents are concerned about something they’re seeing in the creek, they are encouraged to call SPU’s 24-hour emergency line at: 206-386-1800.”

Seattle Public Utilities project updates: Delridge/Orchard, 22nd/Henderson

April 23, 2015 at 11:51 am | In Delridge, Utilities, West Seattle news | 6 Comments

Updates today from Seattle Public Utilities on two sewer/drainage projects under way along Delridge. First, the project at Delridge/Orchard:

The daytime westbound lane restriction on SW Orchard St. just east of Delridge Way SW will continue through mid-May as crews complete demolition, paving and landscaping work. Over the next couple of weeks, crews are also working on SW Myrtle at 24th Avenue SW, where they are installing a flow monitoring cabinet in the right-of-way. On Wednesday, April 29 and Thursday, April 30, between 7:30 a.m. – 4 p.m., the westbound lane on SW Myrtle St. at 24th Ave. SW will be closed to traffic. During the closure, all westbound traffic will be diverted to the eastbound lane with the assistance of a traffic flagger.

Work also continues at CSO 3, located at SW Henderson St. and 22nd Ave. SW. (map) Crews recently completed the underground diversion structure at SW Barton Place and SW Barton St. and are currently working on the CSO 3 facility.

Crews are on schedule to reach substantial completion of both projects in the fall of this year.

Questions/concerns about either project? SPU’s Emily Reardon also tells WSB they’ll be at the next Westwood/Roxhill/Arbor Heights Neighborhood Council meeting for a briefing (May 5, 6:15 pm, Southwest Branch Library).

Faster way to get the power back? Seattle City Light testing one

April 11, 2015 at 8:53 pm | In Utilities, West Seattle news | 3 Comments

While West Seattle was spared power outages during this afternoon’s blustery weather (areas north and west of downtown got hit instead), we often aren’t so lucky. And this brings to mind new outage-response technology that Seattle City Light announced earlier this week. While WS isn’t part of the first round of testing, it might not be far behind if the pilot project works out. Ahead, the SCL news release, and what we found out on followup:

Click to read the rest of Faster way to get the power back? Seattle City Light testing one…

How much will your water bill go up? Here’s what Seattle Public Utilities is proposing

April 10, 2015 at 12:49 pm | In Utilities, West Seattle news | 23 Comments

That’s the slide deck the Seattle City Council‘s Public Utilities and Neighborhoods Committee will see during its meeting at 2 pm next Tuesday (April 14th), as it begins reviewing a water-rate increase proposed by Seattle Public Utilities, which just sent this preview:

In keeping with a strategic business plan approved by City Council last year, Seattle Public Utilities (SPU) is proposing drinking water rate increases of 1.7 percent for 2016 and 2.7 percent for 2017. The business plan aims at capping average rates for all SPU services — drinking water, sewer, drainage, garbage and recycling — to an annual average of 4.6 percent through the year 2020.

A drainage and wastewater rate proposal will be considered by Council later this year. That proposal also is expected to fit within the 4.6 percent average annual rate cap.

Click to read the rest of How much will your water bill go up? Here’s what Seattle Public Utilities is proposing…

What’s up down in the pit? Murray CSO project update

April 4, 2015 at 6:56 pm | In Environment, Utilities, West Seattle news | Comments Off

A little over one year into major work at the site of the Murray Combined Sewer Overflow Control Project‘s million-gallon storage tank, another phase has begun, according to a notice from King County: The outer wall and floor of the tank are done, and crews are now building its inner walls. That’s what you see in the photo above, which we took this afternoon through the fence along Lincoln Park Way over the northeast side of the site. The inner-wall work will mean “small concrete pours every week” through June, says the county, and possibly some Saturday work. Then this summer, according to the update, “the contractor expects to begin work to connect to the tank to the existing sewer system. This work will affect traffic on Beach Drive SW. King County will provide more information to the community before work begins.”

The Morgan Community Association has had Murray project updates at its quarterly meetings for quite a while now, so you’ll probably see one on the agenda for the April 15th MoCA meeting (7 pm, The Kenney), in case you have questions, which you can also take to the 24-hour project hotline – 206-205-9186. The project is supposed to be finished by fall of next year.

Barton Pump Station Upgrade traffic alert for tomorrow; project ‘very close to being done’

March 25, 2015 at 5:07 pm | In Fauntleroy, Utilities, West Seattle news | Comments Off

(WSB photo, taken today)
With another traffic advisory from King County Wastewater Treatment Division related to the Barton Pump Station Upgrade Project next to the Fauntleroy ferry dock, we asked for an overall update. First – the traffic advisory:

The northern ferry lane entrance and toll booth will be closed for up to two hours starting at 9:30 a.m. tomorrow morning, March 26. The closure is necessary to allow Seattle City Light crews to remove the temporary electrical system that has served the Barton Pump Station during construction. This work is part of construction wrap up for the Barton Pump Station Upgrade. Flaggers will be on hand to keep ferry and Fauntleroy traffic moving. Please call the project hotline with any questions or concerns: 206-296-2999.

Now the overall update: County spokesperson Annie Kolb-Nelson tells WSB that “the project is very close to being done. The art work is scheduled to come in in April, and landscaping and restoration is ongoing through spring. WTD is working with Friends of Cove Park to plan a June celebration for the public. We’ll offer pump station tours, and Friends of Cove Park will host a celebratory re-opening of the beach.” Cove Park closed in June 2012, as the construction got under way.

Myrtle Reservoir retrofitting going out to bid, likely to start in fall

March 22, 2015 at 8:23 pm | In Gatewood, Utilities, West Seattle news | 2 Comments

(West side of Myrtle Reservoir site, where work is likely to be staged)
By Tracy Record
West Seattle Blog editor

Nine months after Seattle Public Utilities discussed the earthquake-resistance retrofit needed for West Seattle Reservoir in Highland Park, we know what’s in store for our area’s other underground water facility, Myrtle Reservoir.

Myrtle was covered in 2008, West Seattle in 2010. Then in 2012, their designer, MWH, told the city about “possible seismic deficiencies” in their work – not potentially catastrophic, but not something that could be ignored, either. Analysis and testing ensued, and in June of last year, we reported on the retrofit/strengthening plan for WS Reservoir, interviewing reps from SPU and its consultants.

At the time, they didn’t know exactly what would need to be done to Myrtle Reservoir, a relatively small reservoir (5 million gallons) at the city’s highest point on the east side of the Gatewood neighborhood. Now they do.

Click to read the rest of Myrtle Reservoir retrofitting going out to bid, likely to start in fall…

Traffic alert: 2-week lane closure ahead at Fauntleroy terminal

February 24, 2015 at 4:00 pm | In Utilities, West Seattle news, West Seattle traffic alerts | 3 Comments

Heads up for Fauntleroy ferry-terminal users and people who drive/ride/walk in the area: The wrapping-up-soon Barton Pump Station Upgrade Project just north of the terminal will close the north lane at the terminal for two weeks around the clock, starting next Monday (March 2nd). It’s “to enable construction on a retaining wall,” says Annie Kolb-Nelson from King County, adding: “Flaggers will be onsite during busy commute times to guide traffic.” P.S. Full details are on the newest flyer.

Heads up for the week ahead: More new utility poles; SFD drills at the Murray CSO pit

February 22, 2015 at 6:08 pm | In Utilities, West Seattle news | Comments Off

In addition to the Admiral Way road work on Tuesday/Wednesday (thanks again to Mike for the tip; we noticed today that the no-parking signs are up, confirming it), two more FYIs for the week ahead:

UTILITY POLE REPLACEMENT: This work has been under way for months and Shauna says her neighborhood, SW Kenyon between 39th and 41st in Gatewood, appears to be next, with no-parking signs up and new poles already delivered. Outages often accompany pole replacement work; Shauna hadn’t received any such notice, but we’ll be checking with SCL tomorrow. Checking around the City Light website, by the way, we noticed something interesting – an explanation of why new utility poles tend to, well, stink for a while.

SFD AT MURRAY CSO: Doug Marsano from King County says the Seattle Fire Department will use the million-gallon-tank construction site across from Lowman Beach for drills next Saturday:

Please be aware that the Seattle Fire Department plans to conduct drills at the project site for 3-4 hours on Saturday, February 28. You can expect to see fire trucks and personnel working at the site that day, but no project work is currently scheduled. More information about the Fire Department’s plans will be provided next week. Please contact the project hotline: 206-205-9186 with any questions or concerns.

Followup: Repairs finished, early, at Lowman Beach Park

February 9, 2015 at 3:31 pm | In Utilities, West Seattle beaches, West Seattle news | Comments Off

(Photo courtesy SPU)
Update from Seattle Public Utilities: Repair work has finished early for the culvert that carries Pelly Creek and storm drainage to the outfall in the north section of the Lowman Beach Park seawall. The work started last Wednesday, was projected to last up to 10 working days, but was complete by this morning, according to Elaine Leung of SPU. Engineers will continue to survey the seawall weekly for the next few months.

West Seattle utility-work alert: Early warning of possible waterlessness for a day or two or three next month

February 7, 2015 at 10:17 am | In Utilities, West Seattle news | 4 Comments

If you live along 36th or 37th SW between SW Brandon and SW Morgan, you should get that alert in your postal mail today or Monday, says Seattle Public Utilities, which wants to make sure you know about a big but relatively brief project that might affect your water service at some point March 11th, 12th, and/or 13th, and mailed the notice to “the project area” on Friday. Depending on what they find, it might just be a prelude to something even bigger. But at least you have five weeks now to plan ahead. (If you can’t see/scroll through the notice above, here’s the PDF version.)

West Seattle power-outage update: Underground cable to blame

February 4, 2015 at 10:57 am | In Utilities, West Seattle news | 8 Comments

10:57 AM: The power outage affecting more than 60 homes on western Charlestown Hill is in its 10th hour and the estimated time of restoration has been pushed back again until after 1 pm. We’re waiting to hear back from Seattle City Light on details regarding the “equipment failure” listed on the outage map as its cause, and we’ll add an update here when that information is available.

1:33 PM: Still out, according to SCL map, which now describes restoration as “pending.” SCL spokesperson Scott Thomsen tells WSB, “The crew working on this outage is still trying to determine what piece of equipment failed. This can be a challenge with underground facilities where you can’t just look at the cable and see whether it is intact or damaged. They work through a progression to identify the section of line where the problem exists, including checks on transformers and connections. In some cases, it can require digging up the last section of cable to find the damaged spot and make the repair.”

3:37 PM: Just checked the outage map, and this is no longer listed – if you don’t have your power back, though, be sure City Light knows!

4:46 PM: Update from SCL’s Thomsen – an underground-cable failure caused this outage, as was also the case in an early-morning outage in southwest West Seattle about two weeks ago.

Another early-morning power outage: 81 customers affected

January 24, 2015 at 3:33 am | In Utilities, West Seattle news | 3 Comments

Thanks to the person who texted to let us know about this: Another early-morning power outage. This one is affecting 81 customers, according to Seattle City Light‘s outage map (desktop version here, mobile version here), in three spots – Roxhill and south of northeast Arbor Heights. SCL’s map says the cause is under investigation and estimates restoration time by 6 am, though we always caution, that’s a guess – could be sooner or later.

Update: ‘Underground cable failure’ blamed for early-morning power outage in Arbor Heights/Fauntleroy

January 22, 2015 at 6:24 am | In Utilities, West Seattle news | 8 Comments

6:24 AM: We’ll be asking Seattle City Light this morning about the hourlong early-morning power outage that affected about 4,700 customers in southwest West Seattle. Our apologies for missing it in real time; looks unofficially like it started sometime after 3 am, and ended by 4:20 am, and it appears to have been in what was the primary area of the windstorm outage last weekend (see the screengrab in this tweet from @kjkjal). Whatever we learn from SCL, we’ll add here.

8:44 AM: Though the power was back relatively quickly, SCL’s Scott Thomsen tells WSB, crews are still working on it: “The first thing they did was to isolate the area where they believe the problem exists and re-route power from other circuits. That put all our customers back in service. The crews are still patrolling the line to find out what caused the outage and make repairs.”

5:16 PM: We checked back with Thomsen to see what the crews had found. He replied: “Crews determined that the outage was caused by an underground cable failure. This underground cable is near the substation and feeds the overhead lines in the area that experienced the outage. The damaged area has been isolated and power continues to be routed into the area from an alternate path until permanent repairs can be made.”

Scam alert, again: Fake City Light calls @ West Seattle biz, home

January 21, 2015 at 8:55 am | In Crime, Utilities, West Seattle news | 3 Comments

Two new reports of the scam phone callers who claim to be from Seattle City Light, alleging you owe money and are at risk of imminent shutoff if you don’t pay them. This came in last night from Dan at Peel and Press in Morgan Junction:

My employees at Peel and Press just got a call from someone claiming to be Seattle City Light stating that they were going to shut off our power in one hour and that they needed to confirm our billing info. My employees took down the name and number and then called me. I called back “Mr. Allan Grey” and he went on about how my last two payments weren’t cleared and they would be shutting off my power in the next few minutes. He wanted me to confirm my card number and exp date. I asked him to reference the last 4 numbers of my SCL account because something didn’t seem right and I had a feeling this was a scam. He assured me I could wait for my power to get shut off so I would know it was real. I again asked for the last 4 digits and he hung up. I called Seattle City Light and just as I expected my power bill was up to date and no issues with my service. Claimed to be Allan Grey – Ph. 1-800-237-3081

At least one local residence also just got this kind of call – see this post in the WSB Forums. And as noted here a month ago, utility-bill scammers are showing up in person, too.

WHAT YOU CAN DO ABOUT IT: City Light has scam-protection advice for you here.

West Seattle windstorm update: Power back on to all but a handful as of midafternoon

January 18, 2015 at 1:40 am | In Utilities, West Seattle news, West Seattle weather | 140 Comments

(SCROLL DOWN FOR NEWEST INFO! And in case you need these, City Light outage hotline 206-684-3000 **** Click for mobile version of SCL outage map)

(Updated City Light map screengrab, as of 2:10 am)
1:40 AM: After midnight, the wind kicked up, as the National Weather Service had warned it was likely to do. There’s word of a tree down at a house in the 1300 block of Alki SW and possibly a slide too. (Added: Photo from Suzanne, showing one of the firefighters who were working on the downed trees in that area:)

And power’s starting to go out around the city – including the first West Seattle power outage report, in the Fauntleroy/Lincoln Park area. We’re watching the map. (added) Just got texts from Arbor Heights and north White Center about power woes there too. Let us know in comments or via text (206-293-6302) what’s up where you are.

1:45 AM: The southwest-end outages are now on the City Light map. We’ll add a screengrab – or, wait, maybe not yet; just got a text from Admiral.

1:56 AM: The Admiral outage is on the map as a small pocket, 9 customers; from Gatewood through Fauntleroy and into Arbor Heights/Arroyos, more than 4,700 customers (homes/businesses) are out.

2:07 AM: Map has now added a pocket of 100+ customers out in The Junction, and the Admiral pocket has grown to about that same number. We’ll change the screengrab. Note we have added the City Light outage hotline AND link to mobile version of the outage map, atop this story.

2:26 AM: The National Weather Service upgraded the alert to a “high wind warning” (see it here) as of about 20 minutes ago, in effect through 8 am. Our area’s holding at about 5,000 customers without power, just under half the SCL total. The “estimated time” for restoration is 8 am but keep in mind, that’s always just a guesstimate, could be earlier or later.

3:17 AM: SCL now blames a tree, somewhere, for the biggest West Seattle outage, the 4,700-customer outage in Morgan/Gatewood/Fauntleroy/Arbor Heights/beyond. The wind’s been much calmer the past hour or so, at least from our listening spot.

3:37 AM: About a quarter of those in the biggest outage zone apparently have their power back – the count has dropped from 4,700 to 3,600. By the way, no reports of any injuries so far into all this.

5:57 AM: Checking on SCL’s progress – the big West Seattle outage (now attributed to equipment failure) has halved again, now fewer than 2,000 (looks like the latest chunk of restored customers happened around 5 am). The Admiral and Junction pockets (~100 each, now blamed on trees) are still out. If you are out and don’t see your area included on the map, be sure to notify SCL at 206-684-3000 to make sure they know.

7:24 AM: Looks like no additional West Seattle restoration in the past hour and a half – still just over 2,000 customers out, and the estimate is now “pending.” Via Twitter, SCL says the main problem with which they’re dealing now, here and elsewhere in the city, is downed lines, including one near 44th/Roxbury.

8:32 AM: In terms of businesses affected, looking at the current outage map, it doesn’t look like many are still out BUT the Endolyne/Fauntleroy mini-business district appears to be in the outage zone. We are off to check and will add whatever we find. Meantime, Ocean View has lost power again, according to a text. And we’re sticking this story to the top of the site, but if you scroll BENEATH it, you’ll see our list of “what’s up today” including game-related changes and places to watch – or, click here.

8:37 AM: In all, 5,000 **more** homes/businesses just lost power, so we have 7,000 total in West Seattle. ***UPDATE*** Within minutes, that area (southeast West Seattle, White Center) got it back, though the SCL map doesn’t reflect yet.

9:17 AM: Now out and about. Went to Fauntleroy/Endolyne first, spotted City Light crews:

Power in that area JUST came back on but Endolyne Joe’s (WSB sponsor) tells us they won’t be ready for customers until about 11. Next door, The Original Bakery is closed because of the outage – they can’t simply reopen now because as the sign says, they lost their early-morning baking time:

9:49 AM: Spotted City Light at the Junction outage scene too, on SW Oregon:

According to commenters, both the Junction and Admiral outage pockets (less than 200 customers each) were caused by trees taking out wires/lines in alleys. (Added below: Photo from Gina, showing the Admiral scene. Thanks also to Sarah for sending one.)

10:42 AM: The entire southwest area is now back on, according to the map, texters, and commenters. Now it’s down to the 300 or so residences in the Junction and Admiral pockets, neither of which appears to be affecting businesses.

12:04 PM: Game time, and the number of West Seattle customers still out after 11+ hours is down to 114, per City Light.

3:36 PM: Just a handful still out, per SCL. The weather is continuing to calm, according to the forecast, but there was a bit of thunder about half an hour ago. (No, it was NOT from the stadium, but might as well have been, given what was happening in the game right about then!)

Next Page »

All contents copyright 2005-2015, A Drink of Water and a Story Interactive. Here's how to contact us.
Entries and comments feeds. ^Top^