West Seattle, Washington
The National Weather Service is warning that Saturday might bring strong wind to our area and much of Western Washington. It’s issued a “special weather statement” saying southerly wind is possible on Saturday “in the 20-30 mph range, with gusts 40 to 45 mph.” Read the full alert here. And keep everything charged!
10:02 AM: Thanks for the texts – we’re seeing it too: Some snow here on the hills. Today’s colder weather has been anticipated for some days, though the official forecast doesn’t mention flakes – it does mention a chance of thunderstorms, and accompanying hail, starting later.
10:34 AM: Continuing to snow off and on – turned to rain for a few minutes, now back to flakes. Not too photogenic so far.
11:11 AM: And in case you’re off-peninsula and wondering … no, it’s not sticking. Too warm. (“Warm” being a relative term here …)
Before the day went gray … three colorful views:
Above – thanks to Frank S.! Below – thanks to Chris Frankovich:
And thanks to Jim Borrow for this view, as fog rolled in:
If you have lost track — spring is just three days away! It arrives at 9:15 am Tuesday.
That’s what the Friday night sunset looked like to us. @WestSeaWx explained it as “debris clouds” left over from terrain-based thunderstorms (we had tweeted an afternoon view). Thanks for the photos! Above, from Dan Ciske; below, from James Bratsanos:
And the wider view of that colorful phase, from Kersti Muul:
Photos are always welcome – 206-293-6302 for phone photos of breaking news, email@example.com is best if non-breaking.
Thanks to James Bratsanos for the view from Seacrest at the end of a day that set a weather record – a high temperature of 73 degrees, 20 years after the previous record, 68, was set. The National Weather Service adds via Twitter, “73° is the normal high for June 29th through July 2nd.” Rain is expected tomorrow; some sunshine is expected to return by midweek – but with highs in the 50s.
P.S. The orange-hulled ship in the bay toward the right side of the image is not the Zhen Hua 28, which left Puget Sound over the weekend after dropping off those big cranes in Tacoma, but one of its sibling heavy-lift vessels, the Zhen Hua 33. According to this item we found, it a floating drydock for Vigor – (confirmed) it’s this one announced last year.
James Bratsanos‘s panorama shows the perfect end to this beautiful day. Looks like a car carrier in his photo. It was a busy day on the water – Chris Frankovich caught US Coast Cuard Cutter Midgett out in the area again:
We reported earlier this week (with more Coast Guard info added the next day) on the Midgett and two other USCG vessels seen off West Seattle, including training close to shore off Alki Beach.
Also today, Jim Borrow spotted the Zhen Hua 28 – covered here as it took those four huge cranes to Tacoma two weeks ago – headed back outbound:
MarineTraffic.com shows it just now exiting the Strait of Juan de Fuca, headed back across the Pacific to Shanghai. At midday today, we were in the Lowman Beach Park area when two more-ordinary container ships passed, southbound and northbound:
The next two days should be even better for water-watching – more sunshine, with highs expected in the 60s tomorrow, maybe even the 70s Monday.
Thanks to James Bratsanos for the view of tonight’s sunset, following an almost-springlike day. Spring is close – two weeks from Tuesday; it starts when the vernal equinox arrives at 9:15 am (our time) on March 20th. Even closer is Daylight Saving Time, which is one week away – 2 am Sunday, March 11th, we “spring forward” an hour.
(We appreciate photos, whatever the season, cool views as well as breaking news – firstname.lastname@example.org or texted to our hotline, 206-293-6302 – thank you!)
3:42 PM: There’s a small Seattle City Light outage in Riverview right now after what a tipster texted us was a boom that they suspect involved a transformer. The SCL map notation attributes the outage to “equipment failure.” Meantime, we want to remind you that the forecast calls for things to get windy tonight and early tomorrow, possibly gusting up to 33 mph – no official alert, but there wasn’t one last Sunday either, when gusts took down trees and took out power, so you’d be wise to be ready just in case.
10:05 PM: Jen says in a comment that the power was restored around 9:15.
P.S. Forecasters are still predicting a windy night and early morning – keep everything charged!
2:52 PM: Light snow has started to fall in West Seattle. The National Weather Service is predicting less than an inch – we’ll see how it goes.
3:28 PM: Still snowing – as HelperMonkey describes it in a comment, sideways, mixed with sunshine. We’ll be tracking it throughout the pm commute, and watching traffic too.
4:34 PM: The snow’s intensified, though after an hour and a half, still not sticking. If you’re looking for traffic cams, here’s our page with 15 local views (we’re adding a couple atop this story for reference).
4:55 PM: And now it’s starting to stick – on cars, greenery, etc.
5:35 PM: First crash to report – 35th/Othello.
5:42 AM: Good morning! No snow yet but the forecast says it’s likely this afternoon. Temperatures are in the mid-20s now so watch out for lingering ice on sidewalks and streets. No incidents reported in/from West Seattle so far this morning.
8:31 AM: It’s been a very quiet morning. Still no incidents. Reminder that school will be back in session for everyone on Monday – this is the last day of mid-winter break for Seattle Public Schools (and independent schools that follow its schedule).
6:01 PM: Thanks to the texter who sent that beautiful panoramic view of the Olympics at the height of today’s sunshine. Much of the snow that fell last night is gone, and aside from the shadiest spots, roads are dry. But the National Weather Service‘s newest forecast says snow is likely Friday afternoon, and possibly Friday night too. SDOT, meantime, says it’s ready: “With a goal of achieving wet and bare street conditions on arterials for residents and travelers, SDOT snow crews are prepared to deploy this evening to pretreat arterials with additional emphasis on public transit routes before Friday’s morning commute.” And its media advisory says the “SDOT snow team is on standby for Saturday and Sunday” just in case. We of course are always on standby too and appreciate the heads-up (206-293-6302) when you see snow start to fall (and other newsworthy sights).
8:51 PM: Just in from Metro:
While transit is currently operating normally throughout Metro’s service area, Metro Transit and other agencies are monitoring weather forecasts and conditions in the event that a predicted midday Friday snowfall could cause traffic or travel challenges in Metro’s service area.
Metro encourages all riders to be prepared in case of a weather event.
Snow & ice
If there are significant or widespread transit reroutes or other service impacts due to weather or road conditions, information will be posted on the ‘Snow, ice & flood alerts’ page on Metro’s website, and Transit Alerts will be sent to subscribers of affected service.
If there are just a few minor or scattered impacts, Metro will send Transit Alerts to subscribers of affected routes.
Transit riders are encouraged to sign up for Transit Alerts for the routes they ride, however, it is also easy to see recent alerts by visiting Metro’s RSS page and selecting the desired route.
We will again launch the morning traffic/transit/weather watch earlier – by 5:30 – even if it isn’t snowing (yet), just so you can check in, whatever the conditions.
5:22 AM: Good morning! It’s cold enough that most of last night’s snow is still around, though the next round isn’t due until tomorrow. This morning, your sidewalks and side streets will be the biggest challenges. Some links to check:
Metro – on regular routes
SDOT – winter-weather-response map shows where crews have been working
More traffic cameras – here
SCHOOL CHANGES (updated 8:05 am)
Highline Public Schools – 2 hours late
Holy Family School – 1 hour late, BASS available at 8, school starts at 9
Holy Rosary School – 10:30 start, no am BASE, no am preschool
Hope Lutheran School – 2 hours late, doors open 10:15, school begins 10:30
Kennedy Catholic HS – closed today; freshman retreat activities postponed to Friday
Our Lady of Guadalupe – 2 hours late
Seattle Lutheran High School – will start at 10:30 am
Tilden School – Open as usual for families and staff who can get there safely
Info to add? Text or call our 24/7 hotline – 206-293-6302
7:03 AM: Still no official trouble reports or transit alerts, but in comments below, Steven reports, “Route 56 is stuck on Admiral Way coming out of Alki” and Sam reports, “The 37 that runs by Alki Beach around 6:35 never showed.”
7:20 AM: Thanks for the updates on what you’re seeing, once you get to where you’re going (or if you’re a passenger – bus or otherwise). As for us, here’s the video view from a few minutes ago at California/Thistle:
Our two-arterial look around. Breezy now too and a bit of blowing snow. pic.twitter.com/BFI5JH8EWV
— West Seattle Blog (@westseattleblog) February 22, 2018
8:27 AM: If you drive surface Spokane St., be advised there’s a vehicle-fire response at Colorado, which is just west of 1st Ave. S. Haven’t heard which direction. (update) Per scanner, it’s a “small RV fire” partially extinguished by the RV’s occupant.
8:41 AM: 2-car crash reported at 30th/Brandon.
10:19 AM: Police are responding to a downed-wire report at SW Raymond and High Point Drive.
10:25 AM: Also from the scanner, reports of debris on the eastbound bridge from 35th SW – wood on the road.
10:30 AM: Thanks again to everyone who has provided info via comments this morning, in longstanding WSB tradition. Sarah reports, “The police have taped off 30th Ave just North of Juneau all the way to Brandon due to road conditions and the earlier accident at 30th and Brandon.”
THURSDAY AFTERNOON NOTE: Except for side streets in the shade, roads have cleared up – first the snow melted, then it dried in the breeze. No new snow expected for the remainder of today – but stand by for a forecast update later, and SDOT’s plans.
(SCROLL DOWN FOR NEW PHOTOS, UPDATED INFO)
7:19 PM: Looked outside lately? Steady light snow is sticking on cars and planting strips – at least as of our drive a short time ago from Upper Fauntleroy to Highland Park (the photo above was taken outside the HP Improvement Club, where we are covering the Delridge Neighborhood District Council. No advisory, and the National Weather Service thinks it’s not likely to top an inch, but let us know how it’s going where you are!
8:35 PM: Thanks for the photo above, sent from Beach Drive. And David Nyro tweeted this one from Alki:
Tweeted from the Admiral District:
— i8iphone (@i8ipod) February 22, 2018
From Jana in Morgan Junction, via Instagram:
No transportation alerts yet. We’ll add anything that does come up. If SDOT’s winter-weather-response map is up to date, they haven’t been over here yet either.
10:18 PM: Thanks to Timothy Harris for the photo of snowy soccer at Hiawatha tonight:
11:08 PM: Top-of-the-hour check at our nearest intersection – still lightly snowing:
11 pm. California/Thistle. Still lightly snowing. pic.twitter.com/l1mhJ5hkie
— West Seattle Blog (@westseattleblog) February 22, 2018
That’s 340+ feet above sea level. Highest point in the city is near 35th SW/SW Myrtle, above 500′.
12:22 AM: The SDOT map shows crews have finally made it over the bridge and into West Seattle in the past hour. No incidents reported so far; if you see or hear of anything, please let us know (when you can do so safely/legally), text or call 206-293-6302. We’ll start morning traffic coverage extra-early because of the snow.
If you haven’t been to West Seattle’s forested parks since Sunday’s windstorm, be aware you might encounter toppled trees. Kersti Muul shared these views of a big grand fir downed at Lincoln Park, “west across the field from the bluff trail, just next to the beech grove.”
Thanks also to Hallidie for word of a big Douglas fir down along the path uphill from Colman Pool, with several alders taken down too. And a commenter mentioned trees downed in Schmitz Park as well. We have a message out to Seattle Parks to ask if their arborists have yet assessed tree damage/loss citywide as a result of the storm.
6:55 AM: Good morning. No incidents in/from West Seattle so far this morning.
WATER TAXI: Spirit of Kingston on the West Seattle run, with Doc Maynard on the Vashon Island run, while Sally Fox is out for repairs.
WEATHER: Below freezing again right now – it isn’t expected to warm up past the mid-30s – and there’s chance of a little snow tonight.
SCHOOL’S OUT: Mid-winter break week continues for Seattle Public Schools.
For the past two-plus hours, light snow has been falling off and on, and the National Weather Service has finally just issued an alert about it – a “short-term forecast” alert:
… A very light dusting of snow on grassy or cold surfaces may occur, especially along the west side of Puget Sound from Bremerton to Hood Canal, south of Tacoma in Pierce county, and hilltops around the Seattle metro area. Most spots will just have passing flurries with no accumulation.
The longer-term forecast suggests more chances of snow as the week goes on.
6:55 AM: Good morning. One incident so far this morning – a stalled vehicle is partly blocking the HOV lane on the NB 1st Avenue South Bridge.
WATER TAXI: Back in service but with a vessel change – Spirit of Kingston on the West Seattle run, Doc Maynard on the Vashon Island run.
WEATHER: Below freezing this morning – so watch out for icy spots – and a chance of a little snow.
SCHOOL’S OUT: Mid-winter break week continues for Seattle Public Schools.
LIGHT-RAIL OPEN HOUSE: Missed last Tuesday’s Sound Transit open house in West Seattle? Or, have something more to say? Tonight is the third and final event in this early round – 5:30-7:30 pm at Union Station downtown (401 S. Jackson).
The storm’s gone – but not forgotten. Some scenes to share:
That photo is from today at Alki Beach, by David Hutchinson, who explains:
Lots of Alki Beach sand in motion yesterday. The wind blew a bunch off the surface to the south – including across Alki Ave, while the wave action removed about 2-3 feet beginning at the high-tide line. Assume that this will reinforce the offshore sandbars that are visible at low tides.
If you missed the north-wind-fueled wave action that caused it, here are reader videos showing what happened, starting with this one at sunset by Marie:
A little earlier, Bridget also caught the wind and waves:
Hours before that, Rachael recorded gulls in windsurfing mode:
And as wild as things got on Sunday, you might have forgotten that the morning weather was all about snow showers. Along Beach Drive, Lura recorded a great blue heron standing strong in the windblown snow – for a bit:
Thanks again to everyone sharing photos and videos; e-mail is always best – email@example.com – but if it’s easier, you can text to our hotline, too – 206-293-6302 – thank you!
(SCROLL DOWN for updates)
4:16 PM: Though the “wind advisory” expired hours ago, big gusts are causing big trouble right now.
We’ve been covering:
And now we’re getting word of other problems, including:
-Tree down on California north of Hamilton Viewpoint
Signal Light pole down on 35th at Brandon
Updates to come. And if something is happening where you are and we’re not on it yet, tips/photos appreciated (as always!) at 206-293-6302 – thank you! And stay safe.
4:27 PM: This appears to be the light pole a texter mentioned, down on the west side of 35th SW just north of Brandon:
No traffic effects (but be careful in general because branches are down on some streets).
4:44 PM: And here’s a really BIG blockage:
That’s on California just uphill from Harbor. If you are turning uphill, you can see the problem AND you can detour to Ferry, but if you are coming downhill, right now there’s no warning until you are almost all the way to the blockage – hopefully there will be police and/or signage soon by Hamilton Viewpoint. No crew on scene yet working to clear the trees, either. We tagged SDOT when tweeting this photo in case they hadn’t heard, and they say they’re alerting their Safety Response Team.
4:57 PM: Just in via text, a tree down in North Delridge.
The texter says the tree came down on private property, from the 4th hole of West Seattle Golf Course, and damaged “decks, fences, and a hot tub.”
5:49 PM: Thanks to Colby for the tip that there’s another outage, a little over an hour old, along part of Roxbury near 28th/26th – that’s affecting Roxbury Safeway. We’ll check there in a bit. Not far from there – not wind-related but in case you wondered – 15th SW in White Center is blocked just north of SW 100th because of a driver-vs.-pedestrian incident.
6:34 PM: Roxbury Safeway has some power but exterior lighting is off and cold cases are draped over. Meantime, the outage affecting our HQ and other areas east of Lincoln Park – in Gatewood and Upper Fauntleroy – is now up to 371 customers, per the City Light map. And yet more tree trouble:
Marc near 46th SW/SW Hanford tweeted the photo and reported, “Half the neighbors’ big leaf maple just fell in our yard!”
8:33 PM: Yet more tree trouble. Eileen reports this scene along Glenn Way:
She says, “Not blocking the road – just the sidewalk. Partially covering a couple of parked cars.”
9:52 PM: 8th hour without power. But there’s progress – we saw City Light crews nearby. Also saw crews at the California blockage just up from Harbor Avenue. The tree trouble isn’t over, though – we’ve also heard of one down near 44th and Admiral, and another one in Sunrise Heights. (Added Monday morning – reader photo of the 44th/Admiral tree)
No reports of injuries so far. Meantime, just checked the real-time 911 log and a transformer fire is reported in the 3200 block of Walnut.
10:07 PM: … and the transformer-fire call is already closed. The forecast, meantime, is now for the wind to diminish after midnight. And the next three nights are still projected to have lows in the 20s.
10:16 PM: SDOT says the trees blocking California just up from Harbor are now cleared and the road is open again.
10:53 PM: Tree trouble on Pigeon Point – N. James says this one fell along 22nd SW north of Andover:
N. James sent that – they called 911, but it was determined that the road is not blocked and while some wires are hanging over the street, they’re “high enough for a normal-height vehicle to pass, but trucks may not.”
6:29 AM: We updated the power-outages report overnight but just to note here as well, no major outages remain – a couple small pockets. (The biggest outage was in our area, Upper Fauntleroy/west Gatewood/east of Lincoln Park, 371 customers, restored after 11 hours, around 1:30 am.)
Resurgent snow shower. pic.twitter.com/VCxMAlRa8n
— West Seattle Blog (@westseattleblog) February 18, 2018
(Snow-shower video recorded just after 12:30 pm)
8:26 AM: Thanks for the texts! We’ve heard from Highland Park, The Junction, and Jacobsen Road so far, as very light snow falls around West Seattle – seeing it here in Upper Fauntleroy too. As noted in weather updates earlier in the weekend, forecasters don’t expect much accumulation. But SDOT was out treating roads last night just in case – lots of salt on our hill, which is at 300′. No current alerts for our area; the forecast mentions “scattered snow showers (this) morning.”
9:21 AM: Over for now, and some sunshine has emerged.
12:02 PM: Now another shower – more ice pellet/graupel-like than snowflakes.
12:37 PM: The National Weather Service now thinks the snow showers won’t go past 4 pm.
7:01 PM: The wind alert is an hour away from expiring – but it’ll still be breezy, and that’s brought another weather alert: A Coastal Flood Advisory for 4 am-8 am. From the alert:
Minor flooding along the beaches is possible early Sunday morning–mostly because of the action of wind waves around the time of high tide which is around daybreak on Sunday.
High tide will be about one foot below the typical highest tide but windy weather and waves could cause some minor flooding along the beaches because of the waves.
High tide in this area will be 12 feet at 6:46 am Sunday. Meantime, you might have heard some talk of snow. In Seattle, it’s possible after midnight, according to the newest forecast, but not expected to total more than an inch.
11:11 PM: Just back from basketball coverage in Bellevue, and noticed the streets have been salted up here at 300 feet. It’s 10 degrees above freezing, still, so quite a ways to go before we are anywhere near snow mode. But whenever you see some, please let us know – text/call our hotline, 206-293-6302, 24/7 – thank you!
8:15 AM: Thanks for the texts! Light flurry here in Upper Fauntleroy, and texters are seeing a bit in The Junction and Highland Park too. If it goes on for a bit longer we’ll start a separate story.
The National Weather Service has made some changes to the Wind Advisory alert for today, first issued Friday morning. See the new version here. It’s now in effect 9 am-6 pm, and at the heart of it, “Southerly winds will increase to 20 to 35 mph with gusts near 45 mph about midday.” Strongest winds are expected this afternoon, and power outages are possible, so keep everything charged, and look around outside for anything that could cause a problem if blown around.