West Seattle Blog... » Utilities http://westseattleblog.com West Seattle news, 24/7 Mon, 30 Nov 2015 09:32:50 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=3.4.2 Comcast outage: Readers report trouble in Gatewood http://westseattleblog.com/2015/11/comcast-outage-readers-report-trouble-in-gatewood/ http://westseattleblog.com/2015/11/comcast-outage-readers-report-trouble-in-gatewood/#comments Sat, 28 Nov 2015 16:51:12 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=330460 Multiple reports this morning of Comcast being out in Gatewood. They’re reporting the company hopes to have service back by 11 am.

Side note: Checking the city’s Office of Cable Communications page, we note it’s still taking comments on the proposed Comcast renewal through Monday.

http://westseattleblog.com/2015/11/comcast-outage-readers-report-trouble-in-gatewood/feed/ 4
FOLLOWUP: 47th SW water-line repair should be done by mid-afternoon http://westseattleblog.com/2015/11/followup-47th-sw-water-line-repair-should-be-done-by-mid-afternoon/ http://westseattleblog.com/2015/11/followup-47th-sw-water-line-repair-should-be-done-by-mid-afternoon/#comments Mon, 23 Nov 2015 20:01:19 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=330022

The water-main repair work that’s closed 47th SW south of Fauntleroy – previously mentioned in our daily traffic watch – will take a few more hours, according to Seattle Public Utilities. Rachel Garrett at SPU tells WSB, “The break is affecting about 20 residential customers along 47th Ave. SW, between SW Brace Point and SW Roxbury Street. SPU crews are onsite and have begun repair work, which we estimate will be completed this afternoon by around 3 p.m. The water line is currently throttled, and customers along SW 47th Ave. upstream of the break will likely have service impacts while repairs are completed.” She says it’s an 8-inch line and they’re still investigating the cause of the break.

http://westseattleblog.com/2015/11/followup-47th-sw-water-line-repair-should-be-done-by-mid-afternoon/feed/ 5
West Seattle windstorm updates: 2 major power outages so far, both fixed fast http://westseattleblog.com/2015/11/west-seattle-storm-updates-alki-area-power-outage/ http://westseattleblog.com/2015/11/west-seattle-storm-updates-alki-area-power-outage/#comments Tue, 17 Nov 2015 16:41:28 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=329413 (SCROLL DOWN for updates … ROAD HAZARD? 206-386-1218 … POWER OUT? 206-684-3000)

(Added: WSB photo, wind-swept waves at Constellation Park)

FIRST POWER OUTAGE REPORT, 8:41 AM: Thanks to those who texted – the power’s out for more than 4,800 homes and businesses:

Seattle City Light‘s map says the cause is under investigation. While you’ll see “estimated restoration” times there, PLEASE remember that those are only guesstimates and almost always, the actual time is something completely different – could be much earlier or much later.

9 AM: Commenters report Alki Elementary and Pathfinder K-8 are without power. We are checking with Seattle Public Schools.

9:17 AM: About a third of those who lost power have it back – thanks to Tony in Seaview for first word on that.

9:20 AM: Our crew just stopped by Alki Elementary. Aside from the lack of electricity, it’s “business as usual,” and classes continue.

9:40 AM: City Light says a tree is to blame for the outage. Don’t know exactly where. Meantime, thanks for the texted photo of this tree down by Sanislo Elementary:

The texter says it’s *not* blocking the road. Sanislo DOES have power. Alki and Pathfinder remain the only schools that lost power, but district spokesperson Stacy Howard tells WSB that they have enough natural light to keep classes going.

9:52 AM: Photojournalist Erika Schultz says Pathfinder’s back on – it was a pocket outage all along, on Pigeon Point:

10:06 AM: Thanks for the texts and comments about more power restoration – Alki, Beach Drive, Genesee Hill. Waiting for City Light map to update. (1 minute later) Looks like everyone’s back on – if you’re NOT, please be sure to call SCL – 206-684-3000.

SECOND POWER OUTAGE, 10:17 AM: Almost immediately after that outage was resolved, a new one has hit – Puget Ridge, Riverside, points south, 2,100+ customers per City Light map:

10:25 AM: Just got a texted report of wires down on Beach Drive near Cormorant Cove Park (3700 block).

11:02 AM: Thanks for the updates – the SCL map verifies that the SECOND outage is now over, in less than an hour. That includes Sanislo. Again, if you are still without power somewhere, please call to be sure SCL knows – there might be pocket outages here and there.

11:26 AM: While the power’s back for all except a spot here and there (here’s the “live” map), the storm is still going full strength – we’ve just been down and around a few spots including Constellation Park south of Alki Point, adding photo (top).

11:57 AM: We’ll be launching an afternoon edition of storm coverage soon. Meantime, latest trouble spot we’ve heard about is south of West Seattle – trees down on the north lanes of 1st Avenue South near 116th, in Top Hat.

http://westseattleblog.com/2015/11/west-seattle-storm-updates-alki-area-power-outage/feed/ 91
FOLLOWUP: Delridge/Orchard overflow blamed on non-watertight covers http://westseattleblog.com/2015/11/followup-delridgeorchard-overflow-blamed-on-non-watertight-covers/ http://westseattleblog.com/2015/11/followup-delridgeorchard-overflow-blamed-on-non-watertight-covers/#comments Tue, 17 Nov 2015 05:45:49 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=329381

(WSB photo from Sunday)

Seattle Public Utilities has figured out part of what went wrong before a sewer overflow flooded Orchard just north of Delridge on Sunday (here’s our original report). From SPU’s Andy Ryan:

Crews were in the vicinity again today investigating the cause of the sewer discharge in the right of way near Delridge Way SW and SW Orchard Street. They determined that the overflow was caused by two maintenance-hole covers that were not watertight. We are exploring ways of sealing the holes to prevent future overflows at the location.

Crews also found that the new Delridge combined-sewer-overflow (CSO) project construction is working as designed.

By Sunday evening (11/15), crews responded to and contained the sewage overflow. They removed warning signs once the area had been cleared, and the road was reopened to traffic. We will let you know when we have figured out how, and when, we seal the maintenance holes that caused the overflow.

http://westseattleblog.com/2015/11/followup-delridgeorchard-overflow-blamed-on-non-watertight-covers/feed/ 0
Saw the flash? Heard the boom? Big power outage south of here http://westseattleblog.com/2015/11/saw-the-flash-heard-the-boom-big-power-outage-south-of-here/ http://westseattleblog.com/2015/11/saw-the-flash-heard-the-boom-big-power-outage-south-of-here/#comments Sun, 15 Nov 2015 10:23:17 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=329177

2:23 AM: Some West Seattleites saw one or more flashes and heard booms about the time more than 4,300 homes and businesses lost power south of here – parts of White Center, Shorewood, Boulevard Park, also a pocket of the southeastern edge of WS at Olson/Myers. We’re covering it on partner site White Center Now but thought we’d mention it here too, because of the sights and sounds. No official word on the cause yet but Seattle City Light says crews are headed toward its Duwamish Substation.

3:39 PM: Most have been back on for some time but City Light spokesperson Scott Thomsen says about 10 percent of those originally affected remain out – he also updated us on the cause: “A tree fell into wires, which caused a fault current that was big enough that it damaged some of the wire. So crews have been working to replace the damaged wire. There are about 450 customers still out. We estimate having them back in service around 4:15 pm.”

http://westseattleblog.com/2015/11/saw-the-flash-heard-the-boom-big-power-outage-south-of-here/feed/ 4
FOLLOWUP: Discolored-water problem should be easing, Seattle Public Utilities says http://westseattleblog.com/2015/11/followup-discolored-water-problem-should-be-easing-seattle-public-utilities-says/ http://westseattleblog.com/2015/11/followup-discolored-water-problem-should-be-easing-seattle-public-utilities-says/#comments Sat, 14 Nov 2015 03:33:03 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=329054 Going back to September, we’ve been reporting on sporadic problems with discolored water around West Seattle. Usually, such problems are localized to a specific neighborhood that can trace them to a specific incident – water-line break, fire-hydrant use, etc. But in this case, the problems have been geographically scattered, and in most cases, Seattle Public Utilities says, related to two things: Routing changes in the water system while the Myrtle Reservoir was out of service for earthquake-resistance work, and activation of a wellfield to supplement supply during the recent dry months. Tonight, two weeks after the most-recent update, Ingrid Goodwin at SPU tells us neither of those situations is a factor any more:

Seattle’s water supply conditions have improved, which enabled SPU to completely turn off the wells on November 10. The wells may have been a secondary cause of the discoloration problems that residents were experiencing. Customers should expect that it will take a few weeks for the well water to circulate out of the system.

Myrtle Reservoir has been back in service since October 30 and water configuration operations have returned to normal.

SPU will continue to monitor the system and modify operations as needed to minimize stirring up sediment that can lead to temporary discoloration.
From November 3 through November 13, SPU received 39 customer calls indicating yellow, brown, or rust colored water in the general West Seattle and Georgetown/SODO area. We expect the number of customer calls to go down now that operations are returning to normal.

If you do see this problem at your residence, here’s the number SPU’s been asking customers to call: 206-386-1800.

http://westseattleblog.com/2015/11/followup-discolored-water-problem-should-be-easing-seattle-public-utilities-says/feed/ 3
WATER-SUPPLY UPDATE: Almost back to normal. New request for you – ‘don’t waste water’ http://westseattleblog.com/2015/11/water-supply-update-almost-back-to-normal-new-request-for-you-dont-waste-water/ http://westseattleblog.com/2015/11/water-supply-update-almost-back-to-normal-new-request-for-you-dont-waste-water/#comments Tue, 10 Nov 2015 19:23:59 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=328726 The region’s water supply is now almost back to normal. So the request for you has changed to “don’t waste water.” Here’s the latest, from Seattle Public Utilities and its regional counterparts:

Recent rains have improved our region’s water supply. Now cautiously optimistic about water supply conditions, Everett, Seattle and Tacoma are moving to the lowest stage of their Water Shortage Response Plans, the advisory stage.

Conditions no longer warrant being in the “voluntary” stage, in which customers were asked to reduce water use by 10 percent. The advisory stage means that a potential water supply problem may exist. This is still the case due to an ongoing strong El Nino that is expected to bring warm weather through the spring. While in the advisory stage, the cities ask customers to use water wisely by not wasting it.

The three cities thank their customers for helping the region stretch its water supplies to meet the needs of people and fish in this unprecedented year. … “We live in a region where our customers truly understand and value drinking water as a precious resource,” said Seattle Mayor Ed Murray. “When we asked them to partner with us by reducing their water use, they stepped up and responded. I want to personally thank the residents and businesses of Seattle for doing their part.”

… With rain from the Halloween storm, supply reservoirs on the Cedar and South Fork Tolt rivers rose 12 and 14 feet, respectively, and are now at 92 percent of normal for this time of year. The utility continues to provide beneficial flows for spawning salmon in both the Cedar and South Fork Tolt rivers.

The full regional update, and water-saving advice, can be found at savingwater.org.

http://westseattleblog.com/2015/11/water-supply-update-almost-back-to-normal-new-request-for-you-dont-waste-water/feed/ 4
UTILITY-WORK ALERT: About the work on Beach Drive http://westseattleblog.com/2015/11/utility-work-alert-about-the-work-on-beach-drive/ http://westseattleblog.com/2015/11/utility-work-alert-about-the-work-on-beach-drive/#comments Mon, 09 Nov 2015 22:08:10 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=328643 If you’ve noticed work on, and just off, Beach Drive just south of Constellation Park – here’s what’s going on. From the King County Wastewater Treatment District:

Construction has begun across the street from King County’s 63rd Avenue Pump Station. The pump station is located on the waterfront at the intersection of Beach Dr. Southwest, Southwest Spokane Street, and 63rd Ave. Southwest, in West Seattle.

The work will include upgrading the existing connections from three private homes to the county’s pipeline.
What to expect:
· The sidewalks in front of the three homes will not be passable while the work is ongoing.
· There should only be minimal impact to traffic.
· All work will be done from 8:00am to 5:00pm M-F.
· The work is expected to take up to 2 weeks.

http://westseattleblog.com/2015/11/utility-work-alert-about-the-work-on-beach-drive/feed/ 0
FOLLOWUP: Why power lines aren’t, and won’t be, undergrounded along falling-tree-prone Highland Park Way hill http://westseattleblog.com/2015/11/followup-why-power-lines-arent-and-wont-be-undergrounded-along-falling-tree-prone-highland-park-way-hill/ http://westseattleblog.com/2015/11/followup-why-power-lines-arent-and-wont-be-undergrounded-along-falling-tree-prone-highland-park-way-hill/#comments Fri, 06 Nov 2015 17:36:23 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=328333

(WSB photo: City Light truck on Highland Park Way during Sunday night’s outage)

The question came up again after Sunday night’s 2,100+-customer power outage from Puget Ridge to White Center: Since the line along the Highland Park Way hill seems to be particularly vulnerable, wouldn’t it make sense to put that line underground? We took the question to Seattle City Light.

Short answer: No.

Long answer, via SCL spokesperson Connie McDougall:

I’m told that the utility is aware of that area’s outages, and of course regrets the inconvenience, but City Light does not consider an underground system to be a viable solution for that area.

As one person told me, these kinds of projects are not only enormously expensive, but also very complex. Some folks might think it’s just a matter of digging a trench and then installing power lines but it’s not that simple. There’s a lot to consider.

Part of it is environmental. Crews would have to remove hundreds of healthy trees in the greenbelt area to make way for such a system, which in turn would damage roots of nearby trees. Also, by mayoral executive order, when crews remove one tree, they must replace with two suitable trees. Just making room for that scope of planting would mean thinning out hundreds of additional trees, adding to the cost to say nothing of aesthetic issues. Also, there are protected wetlands in the area, which further complicates it.

The other reason City Light would not consider an underground system viable for that area is our commitment to cost effectiveness. Even if you could somehow overcome all of the environmental issues, this would be a multi-million dollar job, using funds the utility simply does not have. Like everyone else, City Light has to stick to a budget and must make decisions and choices that are fiscally responsible.

To reduce tree-related outages, City Light’s vegetation management folks did trim the trees immediately around the wires in that area in May of this year. They trim about 10-feet around the powerlines, perhaps a few feet more depending on the situation. They try not to cut any more than is necessary for both practical and aesthetic reasons. The tree that caused your recent outage last weekend was not in that trim zone, but had a large reach, so when it went down, it went into the lines. This is just the nature of a greenbelt. And again, for practical and aesthetic reason, crews never trim trees deep into an area, but only around the wires.

This may not be any consolation, but you may also want to tell readers that when there’s an outage underground, it takes much longer to find it and repair it. Crews literally have to look into all the vaults in the area until they find the one with the problem. Overhead outages are a lot easier to find and repair, so customers get their power back sooner.

In newer construction of course, developers and contractors can plan for underground systems and build it into the cost and scope of the project.

Other tree-linked outages traced to that stretch include last August and March 2014; in November 2013, a car-vs.-pole crash there caused an outage with the same basic footprint. Those are just the ones we found easily in our archive, which also includes the signature sign of the 2006 Hanukkah Eve windstorm aftermath,

http://westseattleblog.com/2015/11/followup-why-power-lines-arent-and-wont-be-undergrounded-along-falling-tree-prone-highland-park-way-hill/feed/ 10
UPDATE: 2,100+ get power back after tree takes out wires in parts of Puget Ridge, Highland Park, Riverview, South Park, White Center http://westseattleblog.com/2015/11/west-seattle-power-outage-more-than-2100-customers-out/ http://westseattleblog.com/2015/11/west-seattle-power-outage-more-than-2100-customers-out/#comments Mon, 02 Nov 2015 02:50:54 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=327857 6:50 PM: 6:50 PM: Thanks for the texted tip – more than 2,100 Seattle City Light customers are out in eastern West Seattle, from Puget Ridge southward, as well as South Park and parts of unincorporated North Highline.

6:57 PM: 911 log says wires are down at Highland Park Way and Othello, which could indicate that’s the epicenter of the outage. We’re off to check. Meantime, at right, we’ve added a screen grab of the outage one according to the City Light map (which is linked in the first paragraph above). Some areas flickered about the time this outage hit, but did not lose power (ours, east of south Lincoln Park, among them).

7:04 PM: City Light says a tree is likely to blame:

Texters are also telling us that signals are out in some of the outage zones – remember, that means, treat the intersection like a 4-way stop. (And if you have any other info to share – text 206-293-6302 – thanks!)

7:26 PM UPDATE: As Kelly points out in comments, some already have it back – outage now down to 600+ homes/businesses.

We just checked out the Highland Park Way hill, and City Light crews are working quickly – one tree is visible in pieces off the road on the uphill (south/westbound) side, and the crew has moved further up the hill.

7:59 PM: Everyone else just got theirs back, per commenters and the SCL map.

http://westseattleblog.com/2015/11/west-seattle-power-outage-more-than-2100-customers-out/feed/ 29
WEIRD-LOOKING WATER: New info from Seattle Public Utilities http://westseattleblog.com/2015/10/weird-looking-water-new-info-from-seattle-public-utilities/ http://westseattleblog.com/2015/10/weird-looking-water-new-info-from-seattle-public-utilities/#comments Thu, 29 Oct 2015 22:41:22 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=327521 More than a month after our first reports about discolored water at different points around West Seattle, it’s still being reported here and there, so we have an update this afternoon from Seattle Public Utilities.

(WSB September photo, Myrtle Reservoir)
First, regarding Myrtle Reservoir, considered indirectly to blame because it had been emptied for earthquake-resistance upgrades, and that led to some rerouting in the Seattle Public Utilities System, which was suspected of “stirring up sediment that can lead to temporary discoloration,” according to SPU’s Ingrid Goodwin, who tells WSB today, “Myrtle Reservoir has been cleaned, disinfected and refilled with water. We are now waiting on the results of the water quality samples taken from the reservoir yesterday. Assuming the samples come back satisfactory, the reservoir will be back in service tomorrow (10/30). Bringing Myrtle back on line may help solve the problem of discolored water for some customers. But we’ll know more after the reservoir has been back in operation for a few weeks.”

In our most-recent update, SPU also had confirmed that because of the drought, it’s been drawing water from its well field north of Sea-Tac Airport, a different water source from the Cedar River Watershed. Overall, Goodwin continues: “Regular bacteriological samples in the area continue to come back satisfactory – indicating that the water remains safe to drink. Since the end of September, we have been taking water quality samples and analyzing for metals, pH, chlorine, conductivity, dissolved oxygen, temperature and color at the wells and at eight additional sites in West Seattle and Georgetown. Results from this supplemental water quality sampling in West Seattle continue to show the water is safe and meets drinking water standards.” (Those wells will be turned off “when Seattle’s water supply conditions return to normal,” but that doesn’t seem close yet.)

So what to do if you get odd-colored water? SPU says 39 customers reported it from October 20th to 27th “in the general West Seattle and Georgetown/SODO area.” Here’s what to do if it happens: “We encourage customers to continue to report problems with their drinking water to SPU by calling the 24/7 Operations Response Center at 206-386-1800. Reporting the problem as soon as it is noticed helps our water quality inspectors in their investigation to pinpoint the cause.” Goodwin also reiterates that discolored water has other causes, including when the fire department operates hydrants (this may have been the case with the recent fires in W. Seattle) or contractors open hydrants on construction projects. Leaks and breaks in water lines can also cause temporary discolored water.”

http://westseattleblog.com/2015/10/weird-looking-water-new-info-from-seattle-public-utilities/feed/ 11
TRAFFIC/SAFETY ALERT: Orchard closed north of Dumar http://westseattleblog.com/2015/10/trafficsafety-alert-orchard-closed-north-of-dumar/ http://westseattleblog.com/2015/10/trafficsafety-alert-orchard-closed-north-of-dumar/#comments Thu, 22 Oct 2015 21:47:50 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=326836

A tree-vs.-power-line situation has led to Seattle Police and City Light blocking off SW Orchard north of Dumar (map) until crews can get there to take care of the problem. They’re not sure how long that’ll take – could be a few hours. No crash involved, just a spontaneous problem, but we recall from past storms that this can be a trouble spot during wind and rain, so damage might have lingered.

http://westseattleblog.com/2015/10/trafficsafety-alert-orchard-closed-north-of-dumar/feed/ 3
FOLLOWUP: Why some West Seattle homes are still seeing discolored water: It might not just be the reservoir reroute http://westseattleblog.com/2015/10/followup-why-some-west-seattle-homes-are-still-seeing-discolored-water-it-might-not-just-be-the-reservoir-reroute/ http://westseattleblog.com/2015/10/followup-why-some-west-seattle-homes-are-still-seeing-discolored-water-it-might-not-just-be-the-reservoir-reroute/#comments Tue, 20 Oct 2015 18:16:56 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=326584 By Tracy Record
West Seattle Blog editor

After more reports of yellow or brown water in West Seattle homes in recent days, we have followed up again with Seattle Public Utilities, as promised.

Discolored-water reports are usually specific to one neighborhood and one situation – maybe fire-hydrant use, or a pipe break. This page on the SPU website usually covers those short-lived situations. We first checked with SPU, which provides the city’s water supply, when we started getting reports almost a month ago from neighborhoods scattered around the peninsula. (Our first report from September 25th is here; our second, on September 30th, is here.)

Three weeks later, we’ve continued to get questions – and comments like this one, where a West Seattleite was startled by discolored bath water – so we inquired again. As this comment pointed out at the end of last week, there’s a new bit of information, which we’ve confirmed with SPU:

SPU spokesperson Ingrid Goodwin reiterates that the main cause “is believed to be sediment that was stirred up due to a temporary change in the water system configuration,” with Myrtle Reservoir out of service for seismic upgrades, there’s a new twist, related to the drought: “A secondary cause may be the running of the City’s wells that have been in operation since July 17, 2015 due to the water shortage in our region. Well water, blended with Cedar River Watershed water, is running in areas of the City that include the SODO district and West Seattle, and is used to supplement the City’s water supply. When Seattle’s water supply returns to normal, the wells will be turned off.”

Those wells are north of Sea-Tac Airport, and were activated three months ago as part of SPU’s drought response (mentioned here).

So what’s different about the well water? Minerals, for one thing. “Well water is different from river water and does contain higher levels of naturally occurring iron and manganese than Cedar water, but these levels are still well within the range of health regulations and aesthetic limits. Thus far, the water quality samples that have been taken from the wells do not show levels of iron or manganese that would result in discoloration, and we’ve not experienced customer calls for discolored water in past years when the wells were operated. We will continue to take weekly samples to help us determine the cause of the discoloration and to ensure the water remains safe to drink.”

The reservoir reroute, meantime, is almost over – Goodwin says Myrtle is expected to be back in service next week. “SPU continues to monitor the system and modify the way we pump water to minimize stirring up sediment that can lead to temporary discoloration. We have also added more water sampling and analysis in West Seattle. All water samples collected in West Seattle continue to indicate that the water is safe to drink. The best way customers can help SPU investigate and resolve the problem is by contacting us as soon as they detect any change in color with their water. Please call SPU at 206-386-1800 to report the problem.”

As of Monday, SPU had received calls from 59 customers. Goodwin reiterates, “Although the water is temporarily discolored, it is safe to drink. In most cases, the discoloration will clear by running the water for a few minutes.” If it doesn’t – give them a call.

http://westseattleblog.com/2015/10/followup-why-some-west-seattle-homes-are-still-seeing-discolored-water-it-might-not-just-be-the-reservoir-reroute/feed/ 15
Don’t let the rain change your ways: Water-saving still urged http://westseattleblog.com/2015/10/dont-let-the-rain-change-your-ways-water-saving-still-urged/ http://westseattleblog.com/2015/10/dont-let-the-rain-change-your-ways-water-saving-still-urged/#comments Wed, 07 Oct 2015 17:44:44 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=325208 We’ve had (and are having) some rain, and water-saving has topped the city’s request, but don’t stop now, the regional water utilities are imploring you in this update:

Fall has arrived, but consistent fall rains have not. Everett, Seattle, and Tacoma remain in the second stage of their drought response plans. The water systems rely on fall rains to fill the reservoirs so there is enough water for people and fish. Customers in the region have reduced their use over the past eight weeks by a total of 14 percent. The cities are asking their customers to continue to reduce their water use.

This time of year is critical in the salmon life cycle, as they migrate back from the ocean and travel up their native rivers to spawn. Both the amount and temperature of water in rivers affect their ability to conserve energy, avoid predators and successfully spawn.

… The total water level in SPU’s reservoirs is at 74 percent of what would be typical for this time of year.

In addition to assuring drinking water for people, Seattle Public Utilities continues to provide beneficial flows for salmon, steelhead and trout to supplement lower-than-normal natural conditions in the Cedar and South Fork Tolt rivers, the water sources for Seattle’s regional water system. Chinook and sockeye salmon are spawning in the Cedar, and adult chinook salmon are spawning in the Tolt River. Juvenile steelhead and coho continue to rear in both rivers.

Over the last eight weeks, the region has collectively cut back water use by 14 percent. The water system managers appreciate what people have done to cut back and thank them for their efforts. Continued water use reductions are needed until fall rains return in earnest and fill our reservoirs to normal levels.

Here are steps that customers can take to reduce water use as the weather continues to cool:

Outdoor water-saving tips:

· If you haven’t already, stop watering: As temperatures cool and days get shorter, lawns and plants enter the initial phase of dormancy when no water is needed.
· Weed and mulch: Add 2-3 inches of mulch to the soil surface.

Indoor water-saving tips for residents:

· Reduce showering time
· Check for and fix leaks
· Wash only full loads of laundry and dishes
· Turn off the tap while brushing teeth or shaving
· Don’t pre-rinse dishes
· If purchasing fixtures/equipment, choose water-efficient models

Indoor water-saving tips for businesses:

· Encourage reduced showering times at your facilities
· Serve water only on request
· Check for and fix leaks
· Wash only full loads of laundry and dishes
· Provide new towels only on request
· Check cooling towers for overflow and excessive blowdown
· If purchasing fixtures/equipment, choose water-efficient models

The next round of regional water use reduction results will be released the week of Oct. 19. Find a graph illustrating the savings and more water saving tips at www.savingwater.org.

And if you want the deep-dive details on where Seattle’s water supply stands now – check out these graphs.

http://westseattleblog.com/2015/10/dont-let-the-rain-change-your-ways-water-saving-still-urged/feed/ 1
Big Seattle City Light project on the way for Delridge: Mile-long streetlight-system replacement, plus stairway lighting http://westseattleblog.com/2015/10/big-seattle-city-light-project-on-the-way-for-delridge-mile-long-streetlight-system-replacement-plus-stairway-lighting/ http://westseattleblog.com/2015/10/big-seattle-city-light-project-on-the-way-for-delridge-mile-long-streetlight-system-replacement-plus-stairway-lighting/#comments Mon, 05 Oct 2015 19:49:51 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=325048

(Part of the stretch of Delridge where the upgrading will happen)

By Tracy Record
West Seattle Blog editor

Another big city project is headed this way.

We got first word of this while talking with one of the many city department reps who came to West Seattle on Saturday for the mayor-led Find It, Fix It walk in Delridge (WSB coverage here). It isn’t in the area on which the walk focused, but it’s in an area where many people will be affected by the work as well as by its results. Here’s what’s up:

Next year, Seattle City Light plans to replace and upgrade the Delridge Way SW streetlights and their infrastructure between SW Myrtle and SW Henderson. That’s a 1.1-mile-long stretch (see it on this map).

The Delridge Way SW Streetlight Infrastructure Upgrade Project entails much more than changing to LEDs (which won’t happen on other West Seattle arterials until 2017) – SCL says the light installations themselves have issues with wiring, grounding, and even siting/spacing, so the entire streetlight system along that stretch is being redesigned and replaced.

Along with new streetlights along Delridge, the project also will include lighting improvements on the SW Holden stairway between Delridge and 20th SW, the focus of safety concerns after robberies earlier in the year (yes, this is the same stairway where goats did some cleanup work last spring).

And, SCL says, some power-cable work will be done in areas where “injection” repair work failed.

Here’s the city overview of the type of work that’s expected to happen during this project:

City Light contractors will be trenching within the right-of-way. They will work within planting strips whenever possible, but will be demolishing sidewalks in some locations. New sidewalks and curb cuts will be installed as necessary and trenching across streets will be required in some areas. Sections of sidewalk will be closed while work is taking place. Roadways may be redirected for short periods of time when trenching across streets is taking place. Residents will be notified if driveways will be blocked.

SCL says the work is not expected to require or cause power outages.

The full scope of the project is still being planned, with its design not expected to be complete until March of next year, and bidding to follow in April; construction is expected to happen June 2016-January 2017. We’re checking on the estimated cost, as the SCL budget proposal for next year doesn’t list this (or other) specific projects.

http://westseattleblog.com/2015/10/big-seattle-city-light-project-on-the-way-for-delridge-mile-long-streetlight-system-replacement-plus-stairway-lighting/feed/ 12