(This post covered morning/afternoon/early evening; go here for the rest of the night – SATURDAY CLOSURES/CHANGES: Libraries closed at 4, Community centers/pools closed at 4 – Both YMCAs closing at 5 – Kenyon Hall show postponed to 1/3 – SUNDAY CLOSURES/CHANGES: Farmers’ Market canceled – No church at Westside Unitarian – Admiral Sings Christmas postponed to 12/28 – No mule rides in The Junction BUT as of right now Santa pix ARE still on – POWER OUTAGE SAFETY INFO AND READER TIPS HERE)
(latest image from West Seattle Bridge – refresh to update it)
ORIGINALLY POSTED AT 10:31 AM (post itself is retimestamped so it’s at the top of the home page): Had a request to start another post with road info etc. — so here we go. More to come; we’re back on live-update watch. Here’s some info from Seattle Parks:
Seattle Parks and Recreation’s facilities, including community centers, pools, environmental learning centers, Amy Yee Tennis Center and Langston Hughes Performing Arts Center are open until 4 p.m. today, but all regular programming has been canceled.
Public golf courses, including Jackson Park, Interbay, West Seattle and Jefferson Park are closed for golf, but are open for sledding.
Parks cautions visitors to Green Lake Park that while there is ice on the lake, it will not bear weight, and is not safe to walk on.
For more information about the center near you, please call that facility directly.
From Josh at the West Seattle Family YMCA (Triangle and Fauntleroy branches; WSB sponsor): “Both facilites are open, but Youth Basketball games are cancelled this weekend.”
11:11 AM UPDATE: The National Weather Service updated the forecast last hour. Mostly the same – snow not expected before sunset, so far, so you should have the whole day to get shopping and preparations (our “power outage advice/precautions” thread continues here) done. Here’s the NWS forecast discussion (note it pegs Sea-Tac as the northernmost point for the “heaviest snow” – since we’re not too far north of there, brace yourself).
(latest image from Fauntleroy/Alaska looking NE – refresh to update)
11:37 AM UPDATE: Minoru posts a comment from “a looooooong line” at the grocery store, and notes some items are out. If you see a delivery truck at any local supermarket, please advise!
12:53 PM UPDATE: Speaking of long lines – Arlene Carter from The Mount just called (206-293-6302, if you can’t get to e-mail, call us with tips or questions any time, it’s a mobile so we answer 24/7) — she says the line TO GET TO A CASHIER in Westwood Village Target STRETCHES ALL THE WAY DOWN THE STORE TO ELECTRONICS — Arlene says, “I have never seen anything like it in my life.” Via Twitter, Rhonda Porter (WSB sponsor) reports “QFC is a zoo.”
1 PM UPDATE: City of Seattle has posted a new news release (dated 4 pm today! may be why we haven’t received word of it by e-mail yet). Mostly recaps pre-possible-outage reminders and says in part:
“We are concerned about the possibility of some high winds hitting our service area late this afternoon,” (City Light) Superintendent Jorge Carrasco said. “We are holding some crews to be ready for what may hit us later today. Our fleet is chained up and fully equipped in order to respond to possible outages. We are prepared for the storm that will pass through the area later today. Snow is generally not a problem for power delivery, however, severe cold, ice and wind can become a problem for us.”
1:12 PM UPDATE: Hometown Holidays status for SUNDAY AFTERNOON from Susan Melrose at the West Seattle Junction Association:
For starters, the mule trolley rides are off! The commute from Port Angeles and they’re expecting a blizzard. However, the Pathfinder volunteers (wreath selling by KeyBank) couldn’t be more enthusiastic! And (musician) Patrick is eager to spin disks as long as his equipment doesn’t get damaged. We’re considering creating more of a shelter/den where people can come in from the cold and wind for coffee and a quick snuggle with the electric blanket or warm their feet by the heater.
And I just spoke with Mrs. Claus. Santa can’t wait to meet all the children who might walk, sled or ski to the Junction for a last minute visit.
As of now, our plans are to continue to host a cheery Holiday Headquarters in the midst of a snow storm, but if conditions turn to severe, we might back out early or altogether.
That’s tomorrow, noon-4 pm in The Junction (WSB sponsor). Updates as we get them (and thanks for sharing updates on other events – including church services for tomorrow – if any are canceled, let us know – email@example.com).
1:41 PM UPDATE: In comments, it’s pointed out that the snow has started in the South Sound. Sure LOOKS impending-snow-like out the window. Even more ominously, Scott C sent this link to KOMO radar animation (wow!) with the subject line “It’s coming.” Also, a tip from Meredith via Facebook: “If you are planning on stocking up lines at Admiral Safeway are crazy… hint, if you only have a few items, enjoy a latte and buy your few items at the Starbucks register.”
1:54 PM UPDATE: Speaking of Admiral, thanks to Cathy M. Woo for this road report:
From Admiral, up 59th to Genesee Hill is still a sheet of ice. Drivers are coming down 59th SW waaaayyy too fast and sliding into the Admiral Way intersection. Some doing 360’s at the bottom. See attached photo. Closest car has crashed into a fence. Fortunately that’s all it was. And you can see across Admiral where someone missed the right hand turn onto 59th and hit the car parked there.
Also – via Twitter, mcneight reports Les Schwab on 4th (South Seattle) “just got a load of tire chains in from Portland.”
2:26 PM UPDATE: SNOW HAS STARTED TO FALL AT WSB HQ IN UPPER FAUNTLEROY …
2:37 PM UPDATE: Latest from Skylark Club and Cafe (WSB sponsor):
“Skylark is open until 7 pm tonight. Bands will be rescheduled. We have a few plans in place for Brunch tomorrow, I’ll update our myspace.com/skylarkcafe status with the latest news. Thanks to everyone who has been valiantly braving the threat of icy roads to get here for the last two days…our wonderful and attractive staff and our fabulous and discerning customers. You rock West Seattle.”
Getting more reports from all over West Seattle (and beyond) of Return of the Flakes ’08. Hope it stays light so folks can finish shopping etc. before nightfall. Should have a new forecast in an hour or so to give us some idea of when wind will be added to this – although it’s still expected to be worse in Cascades foothills, Eastside, wind-wise, than here in the central metro area, though 30 mph would be bad enough.
3:16 PM UPDATE: Field report from walk around the block. Snowing harder now. Breezy. Every single little grain is sticking, since it’s so cold. Junction TrueValue out of Ice Melt, says Alice in comments. Hope you don’t have to drive, but if you do, WSDOT tweets this advice: “If stranded tonight, move vehicle out of travel lane and use emergency flashers. Stay in car and if running, keep the tailpipe area clear.” California north from Thistle looked like this a few minutes ago, but there’s no doubt the road surface won’t be visible for long, now that it’s really coming down:
Scott C sends the crowd shot from inside Thriftway at Morgan Junction:
And he notes the slippery dangers of snow getting tracked into Rite-Aid (the one on California):
And just north of Thriftway, looking east to Fauntleroy/Morgan:
Cliff Mass notes on his site that the wind’s not here yet because this hasn’t switched over to easterly yet – that’s running later than expected, though the snow ran a bit early.
Site note: We are now re-timestamping this entry to 11:22 am so that it appears at the top of the home page. The original time, 10:31 am, is now noted at the start of this post’s text.
3:40 PM UPDATE: RealLowVibe tweeted moments ago: “plenty of candles, batteries remain at Admiral Junction Bartell’s, and a delivery guy was bringing in milk and eggs at Met Market.” You can watch citywide reports of the snow via Twitter on the Web here (if you use Twitter, send a storm-related note with the “hashtag” #seatst – for Seattle TwitterStormTeam – and the search will pick it up). Also, a road report from Scott C (who sent various photos above): “Morgan Street going east is open, had NO problems getting up the hill. Morgan Street going west has a road closed sign at 35th in front of U-Haul.”
3:57 PM UPDATE: National Weather Service midafternoon briefing called this storm “life-threatening” in some regions of Western Washington — briefing slides are posted here (highlights – temps warming tomorrow, maybe even into low 40s, but new lowland snow threat tomorrow night!).
4:06 PM UPDATE: Just got a call from Alice – library branches all closed at 4. Community centers, as we reported earlier, all closed early too. Any other reports of closures and changes welcome – firstname.lastname@example.org or 206-293-6302. ALSO – Both YMCA’s closing at 5 tonight – AND CLOSED TOMORROW. Says Josh from the Y, “Stay home and stay warm.” On the STILL HAPPENING side, we have a note that the West Seattle High School girls’ basketball game vs. Vashon at 5 pm IS STILL HAPPENING – Kim suggests “it would be a nice late-afternoon activity for those within walking distance.”
4:23 PM UPDATE: Kari at Westside Unitarian says church is canceled for tomorrow (including the solstice play) but “folks who live close by will be there with hot coffee and good conversation for anyone who wants to show up.” Website’s at www.wsuu.org. Also, from comments: Thriftway closing early, at 7 pm. We will start a list of closures/changes at the very TOP of this post so you can access them any time. No wind trouble yet BUT a reminder that King County Public Health has sent out an important info list, including how to avoid carbon-monoxide poisoning (which killed people in the 2006 power outage), with infosheets in multiple languages – here’s the link again — adding to top of post too.
4:41 PM UPDATE: Snow VERY light right now – just stepped outside for a photo of the road before it’s completely dark – this is Thistle looking east from California, you can assume any previously cleared road is now frosted from the snow that started 2 hours ago:
4:53 PM UPDATE: Just in from the city, which says this briefing will be shown live on Cable Channel 21 (we’ll watch to take notes):
As a winter storm moves in, the City of Seattle has activated its Emergency Operations Center and will provide regular updates on its storm response beginning at 5:00 p.m. today.
At 5:00, Seattle Mayor Greg Nickels will be joined by representatives from the Seattle Department of Transportation and Seattle City Light with the latest information on road conditions and power systems.
A report from WSB’er Olivia downtown: “Snow falling fast downtown. The Seattle symphony 8pm performance of The Messiah still is on, but they will let you exchange tickets for other performances – very nice and understanding. Photo from 3rd and spring.”
TO SEE THE REST OF THIS AS-IT-HAPPENED COVERAGE, WITH PHOTOS ETC., CLICK AHEAD:
5:07 PM UPDATE: Running updates from mayor’s briefing: Whatever wind we get is expected to peak early tomorrow morning (1 am-ish). SDOT crews being called in, 2 trucks to be dedicated to West Seattle Bridge and Viaduct (as has been SOP much of the past week). Call 684-3000 IF you have a power outage – none reported so far. Cover exterior faucets/wrap pipes if you haven’t done it already. No trash pickup happened today and that’s likely to be the case TFN; as mentioned previously, when your trash finally is picked up, you’ll be able to put out double the usual amount. Re: street clearing, mayor reiterates they just can’t get to most side streets. Libraries and community centers would likely be warming center if power goes out (we have checked and Delridge/Southwest appear to be the ones most likely to have generator power for that). Briefing over, mayor promises to be back at 7 pm with the latest.
5:18 PM UPDATE: A few road pix from earlier – Daniel sent this one looking at SW Morgan from Morgan Junction, just before dusk:
Remember, that’s the same spot with the closure sign for WESTBOUND – downhill – reported a couple hours ago. Also, Darren’s photo from Arbor Heights shows 35th/105th was still icy even before the new snow:
If you’re going to the South Sound, the News Tribune newspaper is trying this kind of frequent-update format tonight on what’s otherwise their “crime blog” – see their updates here.
5:33 PM UPDATE: The fabulous Alice Enevoldsen has made an updated version of the Google Map she created last night based on WSB’er road reports. Keep in mind, conditions will keep changing, but as of very early evening:
View Larger Map
SDOT tweet just in: “With snow falling, SDOT bringing all 27 plows/sanders out to clear streets. Unless the trip is essential, please consider not driving.”
6:03 PM UPDATE: News from outside WS – Colorado TV is reporting that a 737 has
crashed near Denver International Airport. No further details. Continental Flight 1404 from Houston, says KIRO TV. Also tracking on Twitter search. Looking for a streaming source of info from CO. This link says ‘went off runway,’ not crash. Anyway, we won’t continuously update this here – just wanted to alert you to a big story happening outside WS.
6:17 PM UPDATE: Wind’s picking up here at WSB HQ. Cliff Mass updated his site and seems to be posting more frequent notes about storm developments.
6:25 PM UPDATE: Official city news release, mostly based on the aforementioned 5 pm briefing, with a 7 pm briefing coming up next. We will start the evening snow post with the 7 pm briefing. Here’s the news release text:
At a briefing this evening at the Emergency Operations
Center, Mayor Greg Nickels announced that a fleet of 27 snow plows are
clearing Seattle roads and seven utility repair crews stand ready to
respond as a winter storm hits the region.
The city of Seattle activated its Emergency Operations Center at 2 pm
on Saturday, coordinating responses by the Department of Transportation,
Seattle City Light, Seattle Public Utilities, Human Services, Police,
Fire and Parks departments.
Snow and ice removal crews will continue clearing arterial roads
through the night. Road conditions may become icy tonight as
temperatures drop. Two trucks will be dedicated to the West Seattle
Bridge and the Alaskan Way Viaduct. The Seattle Department of
Transportation is urging residents only to drive if necessary.
A primary concern tonight is expected to be high winds, particular in
east King County. At this hour, there are no power outages within the
city of Seattle, but City Light is prepared to call in as many crews as
needed if conditions change.
Three severe weather shelters remain open at least through Monday
night: City Hall, Frye Hotel, and Seattle Center Pavilion B. Shelter
beds are still available. Last night, 143 people stayed at the three
shelters. During the day, Seattle residents can find warm, public space
at Parks Department community centers and the Seattle Center. The
following community centers will be open on Sunday from noon to 5 p.m.:
Garfield Community Center, Rainier Beach Community Center, South Park
Community Center, Rainier Community Center and Hiawatha Community
Seattle’s recycling and garbage transfer stations will be closed
tomorrow. Solid waste customers who were missed for pickup today should
bring in their containers until next week.
Seattle Public Utilities reminds residents to prepare water pipes for
cold weather. Shut off outside faucets, drain the water and protect them
by insulating them with rags or foam covers. Pipes in exposed or
unheated areas (attics, basements and garages) should be wrapped with
tape and insulating materials, available at local hardware stores.
Drain and remove all outdoor hoses, and shut off and drain in-ground
Residents are also urged to protect indoor sink pipes that are against
exterior walls, by opening under-sink cabinet doors, allowing heat to
circulate. During severe cold, allow the faucet farthest from your front
door to slowly drip cold water. Set your thermostat no lower than 55
degrees Fahrenheit, day or night (even if you are away).
If a water pipe breaks, immediately close the main shut-off valve to
stop excessive flooding. If you cannot turn off the main shut-off valve,
SPU customers can call (206) 386-1800 and a crew will turn off the water
at the meter for a standard service charge.
Safety advice: Since the snow is blowing around somewhat already, even if you have a covered porch, it may be slick. Just stepped outside for a second to check conditions, almost fell on the slick concrete stoop, because snow had blown onto it. Looks like a new inch or so since this started @ 2:20 pm. Been almost exactly a week now since those first flakes LAST Saturday night.
6:34 PM UPDATE: Tom F has sent pix from along the road, after a trip to Holy Rosary Tree Lot in Admiral to buy a tree. Here’s one, more to come:
This one’s from Morgan Junction, looking at the north end of Thriftway:
7 PM: Launching an evening post for all updates and comments from here on out. Find it here. Thanks!