West Seattle, Washington
(Photo by Christopher Boffoli)
ORIGINAL 9:19 PM REPORT: Police are closing the West Seattle Bridge westbound right now at the scene of a one-car rollover, according to initial scanner reports. Via e-mail, Debra, who just drove past, says the rolled vehicle looked like an SUV: “Debris was strewn far … ended up on wheels.” No word yet on injuries – some of the initial responding units have been canceled – but again, the (high-rise) bridge is closed westbound right now.
9:30 PM UPDATE: Medics on the scanner have reported a 25-to-30-year-old woman with a suspected head injury, being rushed to Harborview Medical Center right now via Medic 10. Though the final determination will be up to Seattle Police investigators, the medic discussion included a description of the crash as “high-speed.”
9:49 PM UPDATE: Police have called for help to impound the wrecked car and also for an SDOT crew to come cleanup what was described as a 10′ x 10′ spill at the scene. As Diane points out on Facebook, the westbound side is actually open till everyone heading that way is detoured off onto the Admiral offramp. Via Twitter, Brad notes that the Mariners’ game just got out, which means more drivers heading this way.
10:22 PM UPDATE: Per the scanner, the bridge is now open again. Adding a photo atop the story, taken by Christopher Boffoli. He says the vehicle appears to be a Mercedes SUV. No word on the victim’s condition – according to one witness, it appears she was the driver.
Thanks to Jennifer and Heather for the tip – a crash has closed the Admiral exit from the westbound West Seattle Bridge. Jennifer reports seeing one person on a stretcher and says it appears to be a one-car crash. No word how long it’ll be closed. 8:44 PM UPDATE: Eryka sent an eyewitness report:
My husband and I were right in front of the car that crashed. We didn’t actually see the crash but we heard a loud crash behind us and thought at first it was a loose grate in the road. But as we looked back for the grate we would have driven over we saw that a silver car had crashed head on into the triangular barrier that separates the bridge from the Admiral exit. Two cars that must have been behind the car stopped and were already climbing out of their cars by the time we had looked back and it was impossible for us to stop and help.
We’ll be checking with police to see if we can find out more.
Thanks to Julie for the tip (which we just verified with a late-night drive) that 16th SW is now fully open again, after two months of a northbound detour for the latest round of road-rebuilding work. The original projected completion date was September 27th, and SDOT had reconfirmed for us this past week that they expected to be done “by the end of the month” – but it’s all open again now, a bit ahead of schedule. (We’ll check with SDOT Monday to see if there are still any final touches ahead.)
Starting to catch up on some of the other stories that have come in since mid-afternoon: SDOT has issued a traffic alert that takes effect in a few days – this is part of the Spokane Street Viaduct Widening Project (that’s the section of the West Seattle Bridge between 99 and I-5):
One northbound lane of E Marginal Way S will be closed at Spokane St for three weeks starting Monday morning, Sept 27. The restriction is necessary in order for crews to install column jackets for the seismic retrofit. During this work there will be three lanes northbound on E Marginal just north of westbound Spokane Street. No turning movements will be restricted.
Thanks to Brian Presser of TouchTech Systems in The Junction for sending along that photo of the crew that’s working on the crosswalk at California/Oregon right now. That’s not the only new paint you’ll see along local roads – we also got a weekend tip from WSB’er “Jack Loblaw” that the West Seattle Bridge was getting some stripe-painting attention too. Typical for this time of year, as crews try to get work like this done before the weather turns for the worse.
ORIGINAL REPORT: If you were heading downtown this evening you might want to be sure to take the high bridge. We’re just now hearing reports that the low bridge is stuck in the open position. SPD is barricading and cars have been turned away. We’re going to check it out and will post updates as we learn more.
7:26 PM UPDATE: The low bridge is back in service now.
Traffic in both directions on Admiral Way will be impacted tomorrow, according to this SDOT notice:
Lane Closures on Admiral Way Bridge Wednesday
Wednesday, September 1, the Seattle Department of Transportation will close lanes on the Admiral Way Bridge between Walnut Avenue SW and 39th Avenue SW while they inspect and make drain repairs on the structure. The work will take place from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. The right lane eastbound will be closed first, then the westbound right lane will be closed. There will be no impact to the bridge sidewalks.
(Photos by Christopher Boffoli)
Original report 11:42 am: Just checking on reports of a car fire in the westbound lanes of the West Seattle bridge. We’ll post more details as we have them.
Update 12:11 pm: SFD has the fire out. Westbound lanes of the bridge are now open, though moving slowly as the right lane is restricted at the West Seattle end of the bridge (just before the intersection of 35th) while police wait for removal of the burned vehicle. It appears the fire was in a commercial van which burned completely. There are no reports of injuries.
Update 2:46 pm: Thanks to those who e-mailed us earlier this afternoon to report that traffic was again moving smoothly. Also, thanks to WSB’er Chris for the cameraphone video of smoke billowing from the van:
ORIGINAL 5:20 PM REPORT: Police and fire are heading to a reported crash involving a Metro bus and SUV at Delridge and Myrtle (just north of the Home Depot/Arco/Shell intersection). No word yet if anyone is hurt, but given the location and the fact it’s evening commute time, we’re posting this as a heads-up. 5:30 PM UPDATE: 2 more fire units are being sent – seven people are reported to have minor injuries. Per the scanner, police are closing northbound Delridge at Orchard.
(Photo added 6:27 pm, originally posted to our Twitter account @westseattleblog)
5:55 PM UPDATE: We are here, road just reopened both ways. Will add photo shortly. SUV was towed; bus drove a short way north and is still in outside SB lane with a supervisor vehicle in front of it. (And yes, that was a TV chopper over the scene for a while – channel 7.)
David DeSiga just shared that photo of Air Force One taxiing at Boeing Field (and spectators – they don’t just turn out for those six blue F/A-18s!) – and we got a phone tip with the reminder that motorcade shutdowns of I-5 can lead to West Seattle Bridge backups too (as is apparently the case right now). Per KING5, President Obama‘s quick visit is scheduled to end some time after 3 pm today.
If you will be heading home southbound/westbound on Fauntleroy Way past Morgan Junction en route toward Lincoln Park, note that ferry backups are worse than usual this afternoon because of what Washington State Ferries describes as earlier fog delays – the biggest boat on the run, Issaquah, is still running late. All this backed up southbound Fauntleroy, the main travel lane, way past even Gatewood Elementary up till just a few minutes ago (we are near there now and can see it’s cleared a bit). Thanks to Anne from longtime WSB sponsor Ventana Construction for the tip!
(SDOT aerial photo of new ramp, July 31st)
Since the final touches are in progress – namely, concrete curing – on the new 4th Avenue South offramp from the eastbound Spokane Street Viaduct (aka the West Seattle Bridge between 99 and I-5), we checked today with SDOT to see if they have an opening date for the ramp, which in turn would be reopening day for the eastbound lane that’s been closed for 3 weeks. SDOT’s Marybeth Turner confirms the big day “may” be next week – but the exact date isn’t set yet. (If it does happen next week, that’s one-third shorter than the “up to 6 weeks” lane-closure timetable first projected.) P.S. A reminder that we have area traffic cameras – including the closest ones to that area – “live” on the WSB Traffic page, including the city’s semi-new Junction and Lincoln Park-area cams, along with links to traffic alerts from a variety of sources.
“The tunnel’s going to be closed for quite a while.” That’s what we just heard on the scanner, as police call in the major-incident investigators for a crash on northbound Highway 99 at the Battery Street Tunnel. We don’t have details of the crash, but in case you drive the Alaskan Way Viaduct northbound overnight, you should be aware. (“Quite a while” translates to “at least two hours,” according to more scanner traffic heard as we wrote this.) FRIDAY AFTERNOON UPDATE: SPD Blotter has the story of what happened – motorcycle crash with two people hurt.
Thanks to Kindree for the photo and this traffic report: “The onramp to bridge from Avalon is blocked by a lumber truck. He took the corner too tight and got stuck.” The photos and note were sent half an hour ago but just came through – so we’ll be heading that way to see if this is cleared yet. (P.S. If you’re trying to recall “hasn’t this happened before?” – here’s the previous stuck truck in our archives, last October.) 11:48 AM UPDATE: Ramp clear, truck gone.
Time for SDOT’s weekly roundup of weekend traffic alerts. Some biggies this time, particularly the Seafair Torchlight Run and Parade – the run will close the Alaskan Way Viaduct‘s northbound lanes from about 5:30-7 pm on Saturday, as well as the downtown route that then will stay closed for the parade till late evening. (Here’s our story on the West Seattleites in the parade.) And that’s not the only big weekend event. Here’s the full SDOT rundown.
ORIGINAL 4:38 PM REPORT: This is on the South Park section of West Marginal Way (map), by Northwest Center and other large industrial buildings – a rollover crash has blocked the northbound lanes of West Marginal. This is in the South Park area but in case you take that route to get back to West Seattle, here’s the traffic alert. No details on the crash cause or injuries, but tow crews are there so it shouldn’t be blocked too much longer. 4:46 PM UPDATE: A little further down the road, the Marginal/Holden intersection is still under police control and overall, says our reporter, “it’s a mess” – so avoid the area for a while.
With the latest commute challenges this week, planned and unplanned, we noticed more people than usual were consulting the WSB Traffic page. Then we noticed some broken links, and some newer cameras that needed to be added. So we’ve added those cameras, fixed the links, and enhanced the infolinks atop the page. Check it out and let us know if there’s something else that might help.
(“Live” eastbound West Seattle Bridge camera moved up from earlier stories)
As you know if you’ve already gone to work – it was even more of a mess this morning and not just because of the Spokane Street Viaduct lane closure: A crash on Highway 99 in the 4 o’clock hour shut down all northbound lanes for a while. One lane was open again by 7 am, and the whole thing was reopened as of about 20 minutes ago. If you haven’t left yet, here’s the eastbound West Seattle Bridge (high-rise, looking toward 99 and beyond) “live” camera for reference. ADDED 8:34 AM: Here’s the KING 5 story about the crash that caused the 99 trouble:
According to SPD Blotter, the 70-year-old man driving the overturned car is in the hospital with injuries described as “serious.”
Many of the traffic-alert signboards that are now up in and around West Seattle say simply “Lane closing 9 pm Monday on the West Seattle Bridge” – and since that doesn’t tell the whole story, as evidenced by a couple notes on our Facebook wall, here’s another reminder: Starting at 9 pm next Monday, and continuing for up to six weeks, the outside lane on the eastbound side of the Spokane Street Viaduct – aka the West Seattle Bridge between Highway 99 and I-5 – will close, roughly between 1st and 4th Ave. South, so that work can be done to connect the new 4th Ave. offramp. But the eastbound lower roadway will reopen along that stretch – so you potentially can skip the whole thing by getting off at 1st Avenue South. It’s all explained here. 3:15 PM NOTE: We told SDOT many of the notes we’d received indicated some confusion with the signs’ terminology; they indicate it’ll be changed to say “Upper Spokane” rather than “West Seattle Bridge.”
The weekly roundup of all the major traffic-affecting closures and changes around the area is out – and it’s worth a look tonight more than ever, since it includes this weekend’s Alaskan Way Viaduct and 1st Avenue South Bridge closures, next Wednesday’s South Park Bridge forever shutdown, as well as other things that might affect your mobility – here’s the link. (Traffic P.S. – We haven’t been by to see it yet, but SDOT tells us the Genesee Hill paving work is done.)
Checking out multiple reports that the eastbound West Seattle Bridge is closed right now because of at least one crash. Witnesses say they’re seeing a vehicle on its side. 6:45 PM UPDATE: Witnesses say this crash is near the Walking on Logs curve. The fire/medic response for it already has closed; there was an earlier one further along the eastbound lanes, about an hour ago, and that call also has closed. City traffic cameras are not currently showing the bridge beyond the Fauntleroy entrance, so they’re not of use right now in determining its status. 7:04 PM UPDATE: The crash scene is cleared; police are reopening the bridge.
(Photo added 12:46 pm – SFD units that were there till it turned out the diver wasn’t missing after all)
We are on our way to the scene of a water-rescue call in the 1600 block of Harbor SW. Traffic in the area is snarled and police have it blocked right at The Bridge, so if you are trying to get to Alki, approach from the west – don’t go from Avalon, Spokane, bottom of Admiral, etc. Still working to get details of what the rescue call’s all about. 12:24 PM UPDATE: Thanks to Katie for word that this call went out as a diver missing near Salty’s. 12:32 PM: Christopher Boffoli is there and reports that what was reported as a missing diver, turned out to be a diver that got separated from their companion/s and has been found. All this should clear up soon. (But traffic lags – and it’s already a busy, sunny day at the beach – so we still advise approaching Alki from the west, for a while.)
As noted here about 24 hours ago, SDOT plans to close the 1st Avenue South/South Spokane Street intersection at 8:30 tonight, continuing till about 6 am Monday. But the eastbound West Seattle Bridge offramp remains open. So a few have asked – how’s that going to work? We asked SDOT, whose LeAnne Nelson replied:
The intersection will be blocked off and closed to all northbound and southbound through traffic, with drivers south of the intersection directed from 1st Ave S to Dawson to 4th Ave S. Drivers north of the intersection will be directed to Lander St and then to 4th Ave S. Five police officers will be on site to help guide traffic. Drivers from West Seattle will still be able to turn left off the ramp to go north to downtown on a lane dedicated to that traffic.
Hope that helps, in case you were wondering.