day : 22/10/2012 13 results

Update: Plumbing work blamed for starting South Delridge fire

10:35 PM: In South Delridge, crews are at a house fire in the 9000 block of 21st SW, just reported as under control and almost out.

10:39 PM: According to SFD, the fire started “in a wall,” according to the first report they got. They’re still checking on some possible hot spots in the attic. SFD says no injuries have been reported.

TUESDAY MORNING UPDATE: SFD public-information officer Kyle Moore says they’ve determined the fire was accidental:

The occupant of the home was working on plumbing when the heat from the plumbing work ignited the wall and extended into the attic space.

At 10:10 p.m., a call came in the Fire Alarm Center reporting flames coming from the wall of a home in the 9000 block of 21st Avenue SW. Engine Company 11 arrived to find smoke coming from the roof of the two-story home. The firefighters used an attack hose line to knock down the flames while the first in Ladder Company searched the residence for occupants and then headed to the roof to cut holes in order to vent the smoke and heat.

Firefighters discovered the fire inside the walls of the home. The flames extended up the walls into the attic. Crews removed two walls and brought down ceilings in order to completely extinguish the flames. It took approximately 30 minutes to completely knock down this fire.

Three occupants safely evacuated the home and there were no reported injuries. The damage estimate is $65,000 to the structure and $5,000 to the contents.

Video: 1st episode of West Seattleite-directed film with Duff McKagan’s Loaded

Two months ago, we heard from West Seattle filmmaker Jamie Burton Chamberlin as his film with Duff McKagan’s Loaded, “The Taking,” neared completion. Tonight, its first episode has debuted online- see the 8-minute clip above. As explained in the description on its YouTube page, “the series explores the lyrical content of Loaded’s studio album of the same title, which was released last year. The project will be released telling a tale of totally bizarre adventures, imprisoned band members, and kids’-size ice cream cones.” Nine more episodes – including West Seattle-filmed scenes – are promised in the weeks ahead (Chamberlin hinted at their content in our August story); watch for announcements here (among other places).

Soup’s on, and game on! 3rd annual Great Soup-Off announced

October 22, 2012 8:06 pm
|    Comments Off on Soup’s on, and game on! 3rd annual Great Soup-Off announced
 |   Fun stuff to do | West Seattle news | White Center

Soup weather has arrived. And so has news of a chance to show your soupiest stuff. Just out of the WSB inbox:

The 3rd Annual Great Soup-Off of West Seattle

Saturday, November 3rd at 6 pm
Big Al Brewing
9832 14th Ave SW

Prepare your finest soup for a friendly competition with friends, family & neighbors!

Please bring:
…a soup to serve 10
…your own serving and eating ware
…and a friend

Children/youth are welcome! RSVP to

Monday miscellany: Three notes, West Seattle & vicinity

SCHMITZ PARK ELEMENTARY MENTIONED IN BOSTON GLOBE: One of the East Coast’s best-known news organizations has published a story looking at Seattle Public Schools in comparison to Boston’s system, and one of the Seattle schools featured is Schmitz Park Elementary. Read the story here. (Thanks to Jameson for the tip!)

FRUITFUL YEAR: City Fruit harvested trees in West Seattle this year as well as elsewhere – and reports the West Seattle harvest alone totaled more than 6,700 pounds of fruit, going to dozens of organizations helping fight hunger. City Fruit is raising money for its 2013 harvesting work with a hard-cider tasting 5-8 pm November 1st at Olson Kundig Architects, 406 Occidental Ave. in Pioneer Square (a central location since besides WS, City Fruit also serves South Seattle and Phinney Ridge). Tickets are available online.

SPACE NEEDLE GOING GREEN – well, the top is, anyway. The online voting is over and a tree design is the winner to replace the “Galaxy Gold” (looks orange to us) that’s been atop the Space Needle, visible from here.

West Seattle businesses: Thunder Road Guitars finds a home

The 3916 California SW storefront recently vacated by Olivia’s Consignment for Kids (now at 4140 California SW) won’t be empty for long. Frank Gross of Thunder Road Guitars (left) just announced he’s chosen it for the first showroom of his till-now online-only vintage/used-guitars business. Just last month, when Thunder Road co-presented a guitar show/sale at Feedback Lounge (WSB sponsor), we mentioned he was looking for a storefront – and now he’s found it. Frank tells WSB he’s hoping to be open at 3916 California by mid-November; hours will be Wednesdays-Saturdays, 10 am-6 pm, by appointment Sundays-Tuesdays. Find out more on the Thunder Road website, here.

How Wednesday’s BEX IV levy comment session will work

For everyone with something to say about the Seattle Public Schools BEX IV levy before the project list is finalized at the School Board’s November 7th meeting – this Wednesday’s public-comment session may be pivotal. We contacted the district today to ask exactly how it’ll work, in case you’re thinking about attending and/or speaking. From district spokesperson Tom Redman:

The BEX IV Capital Levy public comment session (not a public hearing) will be held from 4:00-5:00 pm on Wednesday, October 24th in the John Stanford Center auditorium.

Those who wish to speak may sign up at the meeting: a sign-up sheet will be located on a table just inside the auditorium.

Each speaker has up to two minutes to provide his/her comments to the Board.

The Board is taking comments from 4:00-5:00 pm.

The Board will not be responding to comments provided.

At last week’s board meeting (WSB coverage here), School Board president Michael DeBell had said he expected at least 20 speakers to have a chance. In the meantime, is the address you can use to e-mail comments on the plan, which currently includes, for West Seattle, an expanded/renovated Fairmount Park Elementary to reopen in 2014, rebuilt Schmitz Park Elementary to open in 2015 at the current (closed) Genesee Hill school site, and a rebuilt Arbor Heights Elementary to open in 2018 – a date that local public-school advocates want to see moved up.

West Seattle restaurants: JC’s Deli to open Tuesday

It’s been seven weeks since we first reported on JC’s Deli, in the works to bring “classic hoagies,” meats, and cheeses to 9007 35th SW, next to West Seattle Fish House and Stuffed Cakes. We noticed recently that signage had turned up in the window – and now, we’ve confirmed the door’s about to open to customers. Cynthia Cummings – the “C” in JC’s Deli along with mom Jeanette Cummings (“J”), well-known for her work in nearby delis – tells WSB the deli will open tomorrow (Tuesday, October 23). They had been awaiting Health Department inspections, and now that those are over and done with, they’re ready to go. JC’s Deli will be closed Mondays, so that’s why they are opening tomorrow, with regular days/hours Tuesdays-Saturdays, 10 am-8 pm, Sundays 11 am-7 pm. (Dine-in as well as take-out, as mentioned in our original story.)

State alert: Wednesday drill to test oil-spill-response readiness

October 22, 2012 9:45 am
|    Comments Off on State alert: Wednesday drill to test oil-spill-response readiness
 |   Environment | Preparedness | West Seattle news

The state Ecology Department just sent advance word about a drill planned for this Wednesday, off Blake Island on the other side of Puget Sound from West Seattle’s west-facing shores. While Ecology says it’ll be happening on the west side of the island – which would mean, facing Kitsap County – we’re publishing the alert in case unusual boat/aircraft traffic and other sightings catch your eye while participants are heading to and from the site:

Anyone spotting oil skimming vessels, containment boom and other response equipment on the west side of Blake Island in Puget Sound Wednesday Oct. 24 shouldn’t be alarmed.

The Washington Department of Ecology (Ecology) is testing the ability of six area oil companies to mount a rapid, aggressive and well-coordinated response to a major oil spill in central Puget Sound.

No oil will be discharged during the drill.

Harley Marine Services is sponsoring the multi-party oil spill preparedness drill with its cleanup contractor Marine Spill Response Corp. MSRC is a private, non-profit company supported by oil terminal and shipping company members.

More details, including “who’s participating,” ahead:Read More

West Seattle Monday: Art; food; networking; more…

October 22, 2012 9:18 am
|    Comments Off on West Seattle Monday: Art; food; networking; more…
 |   West Seattle news | WS miscellaneous

(Saturday morning photo looking toward The Olympics, by Nick Adams for WSB)
Welcome to the final full week of October (already)! Showers are expected later today.

MONDAY ARTISTS: Watercolorists are invited to join this established group, 9:30 am Mondays at Island View Apartments across from West Seattle High School.

LA LECHE LEAGUE: The breastfeeding-support group meets on fourth Mondays (that means today) at 10:30 am, Westside Unitarian Universalist Congregation church @ 7141 California SW.

WEST SEATTLE COOKING CLUB: 3 pm at Beveridge Place Pub – the rules are, use the weekly theme to make something and bring it to share. This week’s theme: African.

WEST SEATTLE WOMEN IN CHARGE: The business-networking group will meet in the evening for the first time – 6 pm, Freshy’s in The Admiral District. Details and map here.

SEATTLE LUTHERAN OPEN HOUSE: The high school at 40th and Genesee north of The Junction welcomes prospective families to an open house at 6:30 pm tonight.

ANTI-INFLAMMATORY DIET: The popular class by Kathy Abascal starts a new series at The Kenney (WSB sponsor) tonight at 7.

FAMILY STORY TIME: At High Point Library, 7 pm.

And as always, there’s MORE on our calendar – for today, tonight, and beyond! Plus, check the WSB Halloween page for special events this week and next.

Update: New wave of ‘Hum’ reports overnight; CalPortland response

ORIGINAL REPORT, 9:15 AM: After starting the day with an inbox full of reports regarding the recurring noise that’s come to be known as “The Hum,” we’ve been checking around. You’ll recall that the last time this happened, the distinctive sound was traced to vacuum-type equipment from an offloading operation at the CalPortland terminal on the Duwamish River, and as reported here last week, they have been working on figuring out ways to muffle it. Is this the same sound? Hard to tell. Our early watch headed in that direction and couldn’t determine conclusively. We checked with Highland Park Action Committee leadership, which has been in frequent contact with CalPortland; they say management e-mailed them over the weekend to say said they have placed more noise blankets around the machine while awaiting a new muffler, and they are working on more interim measures. We have an inquiry out to them too to see if there’s even an offloading operation currently under way. So no conclusions, but wanted to let you know we’re checking on it. The city remains your official contact for noise concerns – find info on that here.

1:08 PM UPDATE: From Pete Stoltz at CalPortland, one of the people we met with at the facility last week along with HPAC leadership:

We are in the process of offloading a vessel that arrived at our Cement Terminal on Saturday Morning October 20th. The schedule for offloading is weather dependent because we cannot offload when it is raining. This ship requires about 84 more hours of offloading operations. We currently predict offloading will be complete on October 25th, weather permitting.

We have been monitoring the posts on the West Seattle blog and read the latest posts from your readers regarding the noise this morning. We recognize their concerns and take them seriously. We also understand that recent noise measurements showing that the equipment technically complies with noise code requirements does not resolve those concerns. That is why we have continued our effort to muffle the noise from the machine since we first learned it might be the source of the “hum” on September 26th.

As you reported in your recent update we replaced one of the two silencers on the machine and ordered a replacement for the second silencer. Unfortunately, the new silencer has to be custom made for the machine, but it is on order and scheduled to arrive and be installed before the next ship arrives for offloading during the first week of December. Due to the physical properties of noise, our noise consultant expects that installation of the second silencer should result in a more substantial reduction in noise than can be achieved with replacement of only one silencer.

In addition to the installation of the new silencer, we fashioned an additional baffle and attached it to the air discharge port and wrapped the old silencer in sound blankets. We also installed additional sound proofing material on other parts of the machine. On Saturday, the crew constructed and installed additional panels around the silencers made of plywood and foam insulation (photo attached), and are continuing to construct and install additional panels in an effort to enclose that area of the machine in an effort to improve the situation.

We appreciate our neighbors’ patience and recognize and understand the frustration expressed in the comments on the blog. We are continuing to take steps to reduce the noise from the machine, both short- and long-term, and will continue to provide additional updates on the status of our progress on this effort.

TRAFFIC/TRANSIT TODAY: Monday updates on getting around

(Live view from the only WS Bridge camera currently in operation; see other cameras on the WSB Traffic page)
6:58 AM: Good morning! Starting a new week – and here’s today’s place for your traffic/transit (all modes, land or sea) updates, as well as anything we have to report, updated throughout the day. So far, nothing out of the ordinary.

8:11 AM: We’re watching all the usual sources, from Twitter to cameras, and still nothing unusual on the bridges/roads. One reminder: This is the last week before the West Seattle Water Taxi switches to its fall/winter 5-day-a-week, commute-times-only schedule NEXT Monday. Also, while we’ve had a few comments about bus capacity being OK in the early going, an 8:10 am rider has weighed in via Twitter with capacity concern – adding that to the comment thread.

West Seattle Bike Connections: Bicyclists, get connected!


(Bicyclists on the low bridge; September 2012 photo by Don Brubeck)
Whether you are a daily commuter, a weekend rider, or somewhere inbetween, a brand-new group called West Seattle Bike Connections invites you to pedal on over and join in. You might have seen the announcement and discussion in the WSB Forums, or maybe on Facebook. And this week, you can check out WSBC in person. The announcement shared by Don Brubeck:

Thursday, October 25 from 6:45 – 9:45 am, rain or shine

West Seattle Bike Connections will be meeting, greeting and treating bike commuters at the West Seattle lower bridge where the Alki, Duwamish, and West Seattle Bridge Trails converge. Homemade cookies, Halloween treats, and information about how to get involved in our mission to Provide advocacy and assistance for those traveling by bicycle to, from, and around West Seattle. We want to give West Seattle a strong voice in the 2012-13 Seattle Bike Master Plan Update.

More info about that – including a WSBC meeting next Saturday – is here.

West Seattle businesses: Allstar Fitness says operations ‘strong,’ unchanged by Chapter 11 filing

Management at Allstar Fitness says it plans to send a letter to its members explaining that its recent Chapter 11 filing is not affecting and will not change membership services and operations. We sought out Allstar management/ownership after receiving inquiries from members who said the filing was the subject of rumors; we also have reviewed court documents. The filing in the Western Washington division of United States Bankruptcy Court, under the company’s official name West Seattle Fitness LLC, actually happened in late August, as Allstar general manager Ramon Velasquez pointed out in a conversation with WSB researcher/editorial assistant Katie Meyer. He says the club’s daily operations, including hours, classes, and staff, have not and will not be affected by the proceedings, and that the forthcoming letter to members will include that information. Velasquez told WSB that memberships will not be affected and that there has been no interruption in employee wages, health coverage, vacations, etc. He says the club’s operations are strong and that last month was their best September ever for memberships. (Chapter 11 is a bankruptcy filing for reorganization, as explained on this federal-government page.) Photo: King County Assessor website