day : 23/03/2016 12 results

UPDATE: Power outage, road closure after driver hits pole in north West Seattle

(UPDATE: Power came back for almost everyone at 2:20, after 3 1/2 hours; Admiral reported open again at 5:50 am)

FIRST REPORT, 10:52 PM: It isn’t on the Seattle City Light map yet but we’re getting multiple reports of a power outage. Some reporting it say they’re near The Junction, some are south of Admiral. We have a photographer checking out a crash on Admiral Way that might have taken out lines.

(WSB photos by Christopher Boffoli)

10:54 PM: WSB’s Christopher Boffoli is at the crash scene on Admiral Way between 49th and Garlough [map] and confirms “City Light just cut the power.”


10:56 PM: The power outage is still NOT on the City Light map. We’re hearing from folks all over Admiral and points south. Southernmost report so far is Fauntleroy/Dawson.

11 PM: Now we’re hearing it’s back, at least for some. City Light finally shows the extent that it at least had – more than 4,400 customers.

Meantime, Christopher says Admiral might be closed for some hours at the crash scene because of the pole’s condition. He also reports, “No injuries. SFD tells me that the driver said he was texting. Also claimed he didn’t have insurance. Car appears to be a large SUV of some kind.”

11:12 PM: Those still without power number 1,500+ homes and businesses, per the City Light map.


11:18 PM: While headed back to his HQ to process images, Christopher tells us, he observed: “Traffic lights out at Admiral and 47th, but on and functioning normally at California and Admiral. And the entire Admiral District retail area seems to have power.” Thanks to Ted for the updated outage map image in comments – here it is if you haven’t seen it there:

SCL says via Twitter that repairs could take “4 to 6 hours.” They had to de-energize the lines because the leaning pole sent wires into tree(s) that started catching fire.

11:35 PM: Commenter asked about food safety in multi-hour outages. Here’s advice from the feds. Meantime, we’re adding a few more images from the crash scene. Also, a request – if you’re up when the power goes back on, please text us – 206-293-6302 – we’re not in the outage zone and the City Light maps don’t show when power is restored, only the time it went out. Thanks!

12:09 AM: No change in the City Light map info. We’ll be checking back periodically.

2:25 AM: Just received two texts from people in North Admiral saying their power’s back on.

5:27 AM: According to SDOT, Admiral Way has not yet reopened. This is affecting bus routes too:

5:52 AM: Metro just sent an alert that the road is open again and buses are back to normal.

‘It takes all of us to make a change’: First-ever Equity Day at WSHS

By Tracy Record
West Seattle Blog editor

“It takes all of us to make a change.”

So declared a student toward the start of the all-school assembly that concluded today’s first-ever Equity Day at West Seattle High School.

The assembly’s guest speaker, Erin Jones – a longtime educator who is running for State Superintendent of Public Instruction – told the tale of her rise from an orphanage to education executive, saying your beginnings don’t have to define your endings.

She spoke of her own beginnings, born to a black man and white woman who she said was told she could not keep her baby. Members of her adoptive family referred to her with the “N” word, she said, speaking of, at age 35, confronting and forgiving her grandmother for using that word instead of Jones’s name. There is a difference between racism and ignorance, Jones said, saying her grandmother was guilty of the latter.

She spoke of growing up in The Netherlands, where her father moved the family when she was 5, and attending a school that was visited by royalty and VIPs, and deciding she wanted to change the world, and started to learn languages to make that happen. “I don’t care where you started, your beginning doesn’t have to define your ending. If you’re a refugee, maybe even homeless, or living with three families in one small apartment … that doesn’t have to define you.” Nor does a disability, she said, talking about her three grown children, one on the autism spectrum, another with dysgraphia, all high achievers.

Life is not easy, Jones said – “it’s not about the barriers, but what you’re going to” do about them. “Make your community the best place it can be – that’s what equity is all about.” And, she exhorted the students to “find something to live for … that you care enough to die for.”

Before her speech, the first part of the assembly, on an abbreviated school day, taught a lesson about diversity and cooperation via a “wheelbarrow” race.

That followed a morning of workshops that replaced regularly scheduled classes. Equity Day was organized by the WSHS Diversity Club and ASB, with the theme “Raising Awareness, Inspiring Action,” and the hashtag #StayWoke. The equity issues raised in the workshops ranged far and wide, including race, gender, sexual identity, income, and more.”

The list of workshops:

Microaggressions: Power, Privilege and Everyday Life
What is equity anyway?
Why Awareness is Important
Understanding LGBTQ Equity
Equity in Government
Racial Equity in Seattle
Income Equity
Criminal Justice Equity
Performing Arts Equity
Religious Equity and Anti-Muslim Stereotypes:
Equity in Sports
Physical Activities and Individuals with Disabilities- Universal Approach for ALL to PLAY:
Equity and Homelessness
Racial Equity
Equity in Education
Environmental Equity
Gender Equity

Workshops had both student leaders and community leaders, including King County Councilmember Larry Gossett, Seattle School Board director Dr. Stephan Blanford, state Corrections Department executive Dr. Donta Harper,

The co-presenting organizations wrote that its goal was to support the school’s mission “Every Student Achieving, Everyone Accountable” by “making everyone accountable for equity at WSHS and to make every student comfortable in order to allow for every student to achieve.”

YOU CAN HELP! Donate water bottle(s) for youth helping youth

That’s Clayton, who’s hoping you can help with a donation drive that he and his classmates are wrapping up at the end of the week. The photo and request were sent tonight by his family:

Clayton and his 7th-grade classmates at Westside School are collecting supplies for homeless youth. Clay’s group is trying to wrangle 50 new or barely used reusable water bottles by this Friday! They’d love some help from the West Seattle Community. Donations can be dropped off at our house (5417 36th Ave SW) or at Westside School by Friday at 8:15.

The school is at 10404 34th SW in Arbor Heights.

When and where to talk with your councilmember close to home

March 23, 2016 8:06 pm
|    Comments Off on When and where to talk with your councilmember close to home
 |   West Seattle news

Her first “district office hours” day was a hit, and now City Councilmember Lisa Herbold has announced more upcoming dates:

As before on March 4th, I will be available from 12:00 pm – 7:00 pm. This is a rotating office to help best serve all communities in District 1.

I’m including evening hours to accommodate those who want to stop by after work. These will be open office hours for anyone to stop by; additionally, you’re welcome to let me know you’re coming by emailing my scheduler, Alex Clardy. We will likely continue adjustments as we move forward, and as before, your input is welcome.

April 1 Senior Center of West Seattle (4217 SW Oregon St)

April 29 South Park Community Center (8319 8th Avenue S)

May 20 Southwest Neighborhood Service Center (2801 SW Thistle St)

June 10 South Park Community Center (8319 8th Avenue S)

Herbold said she met with 24 people during that first event March 4th.

When will The Viaduct’s 2-week closure start? We’re closer to finding out

(WSDOT photo from last week – workers walking toward the tunneling machine’s back end)

Another update this afternoon on the Highway 99 tunnel project, currently in a “maintenance stop” getting ready to tunnel beneath the Alaskan Way Viaduct, which WSDOT plans to close for about two weeks when that happens.

No date yet but WSDOT’s update says they’re getting closer:

Inspections and routine maintenance of the SR 99 tunneling machine are ongoing as Seattle Tunnel Partners continues preparing the machine for its drive beneath the Alaskan Way Viaduct.

Crews have been performing planned maintenance since the machine reached a maintenance stop earlier this month. They’ve also been preparing for a series of inspections that must occur in hyperbaric conditions. Hyperbaric conditions are those in which the air pressure is greater than the atmosphere we live and breathe in every day – similar to what scuba divers experience during the course of an underwater dive. This post explains the process for completing hyperbaric work.

So far this week, STP crews have completed a total of 10 hyperbaric shifts in the chamber behind the tunneling machine’s cutterhead. Most of that time has been devoted to cleaning muck from the cutterhead openings and building the platforms crews will stand on as they perform the inspections.

The inspections are expected to take several more days. STP will determine the expected duration of the remaining maintenance based on the results of the inspections.

The end of the maintenance period will usher in the next step in Bertha’s journey: a trip beneath the viaduct. WSDOT plans to close the viaduct for approximately two weeks to allow the machine to pass beneath the structure.

We will provide the public with advance notice of the closure, but the start date isn’t yet known. It will depend on the amount of work that must be completed while the machine is in the maintenance stop. Check for additional details as the closure approaches.

Local transportation and transit agencies have not yet formally announced their plans for what’ll change to help mobility during the Viaduct closure, but some tentative plans were previewed at last month’s West Seattle Transportation Coalition meeting – here’s our coverage.

P.S. WSDOT’s site also is adding more detailed information you might not have seen, including this, and an FAQ.

CONGRATS! Honors for another young West Seattle playwright

Congratulations to Lily Bertucci, honored for a play she wrote in ACT’s Young Playwrights Program, which has spotlighted other local student writers before. Her family shares the news and photo:

Lily Bertucci, 8th grader at Madison Middle School, was awarded Honorable Mention for her play, “More Than a Knight,” written during the Young Playwrights Program (YPP) After-School Program at ACT Theater. Her play was selected by theater director and educator Meghan Arnette, to be performed on March 25th (this Friday) at TOPS K-8 Middle School.

Here’s what Lily has to say: “The YPP program was a great experience for me. I learned about what goes into writing a play, what a play is as a form of writing, and how to express my character’s feelings and personality through dialogue. I would recommend the YPP program to anyone, even if you have never done playwriting before. The program helped me step out of my comfort zone. It was a chance to work with a great instructor, K. Brian Neel, meet new people, and improve my writing. One of my favorite parts was being able to hear my play being read out loud. I am happy to have been awarded Honorable Mention and to have Meghan Arnette select my play to be performed at the TOPS school. I am really looking forward to seeing the performance.”

Lily’s mom wants to get the word out that ACT offers their 10-week after-school playwriting class in Seattle at the ACT theater: “YPP at ACT is an outstanding opportunity for kids who are interested in playwriting but do not have the YPP integrated into their school’s curriculum.”

According to the ACT website, the afterschool program starts up again in September.

VIDEO: Police-staffing study = not just numbers

March 23, 2016 4:00 pm
|    Comments Off on VIDEO: Police-staffing study = not just numbers
 |   West Seattle news | West Seattle police

As previewed during Councilmember Lisa Herbold‘s visit to the West Seattle Block Watch Captains Network last night (WSB coverage here), the new police-staffing survey was reviewed by a City Council committee today.

The video above shows the meeting of the Gender Equity, Safe Communities, and New Americans Committee, chaired by West Seattle-residing at-large Councilmember Lorena González. While Herbold isn’t a member of the committee, any councilmember is welcome to join any committee meeting, so she was there today to bring up some questions.

First, the report itself – you can download the slide deck here. Previews published last Friday mentioned that it calls for SPD to add more officers, but the numbers are just part of what was discussed.

SPD and city-budget managers who led the meeting offered frequent caveats that the 120+-page report – which was made public months later than expected – doesn’t necessarily reflect current staffing levels or philosophies. For example, they said, the concept of “responding to Priority 1 calls within 7 minutes, 90 percent of the time” might deserve a further breakdown – splitting up types of what are now considered Priority 1 calls, between what’s happening now (like a burglary in progress) and what could probably wait (someone who died at home). Also, what about Priority 2, 3, 4 calls – are the current labels for each type of call really the way SPD views and wants to respond to it?

Also, as Herbold had mentioned last night, SPD has a goal of splitting its time between proactive duties and reactive duties. The report, it was pointed out, calls investigations “proactive,” but that might not be how SPD sees them. Councilmember González said she agreed with Herbold that this is a key point of analyzing and evolving SPD operations. Herbold said that some granularity in staffing assignment, such as bicycle patrols, might help boost the proactivity.

Meantime, the briefers said, while SPD might choose to maintain the scheduling of three 9-hour shifts in each day, the overlap might be worth changing – if they overlap an hour instead of a half-hour, that “could provide better coverage.”

In all, the report was described as more of a “jumping-off point” than a blueprint for where SPD should be going. And in the meantime, it’s “hiring at an aggressive rate, a fast clip,” the councilmembers were told; Herbold said more use of civilian personnel might help with the challenges posed by the time-consuming process of getting sworn personnel on board.

What’s next? SPD managers said they want to come up with their own model for staffing and deployment.

West Seattle Crime Watch: Little Free Library vandalized, then stolen

Another unique stolen item to watch for: Linda Sabee‘s Little Free Library:


Linda is the proprietor of The Junction boutique Carmilia’s, and the stolen LFL (shown in her photo from its time outside her Alki-area home) has sentimental value:

My dad and son built it in honor of my mom, who was an elementary school teacher and sadly died in 2007. She was a lover of education and a huge supporter of reading, book,s and literacy.

About a year and a half ago, when I did a freshening-up of the shop, I decided to put the free library in front of Carmilia’s. It was very wel- used and a fun addition to the ‘hood and my shop.

About two weeks ago it was vandalized; someone tore it off its base. I left it on the sidewalk where it continued to be used. My dad will be returning from his snowbirding soon and I figured he and my son could fix it. Unfortunately, it was stolen last week. It really sickens me that people would treat any piece of personal property with such disrespect, but such a sentimental piece confounds me all the more.

Contact police if you have info – or Linda, who can be reached via her shop (4528 California SW).

VIDEO: Teen leads underwater cleanup in West Seattle waters

Near West Seattle’s Seacrest Pier, the underwater zone known as Cove 2 is cleaner thanks to an effort led last weekend by 17-year-old Tanner O’Donnell, as part of his senior project for Nathan Hale High School. Our area’s best-known clean-water activist, “Diver Laura” James, worked with him and, along with her “dive buddy” Lamont Granquist, got some of the efforts on video (see for yourself above, and hear from Tanner in the clip).

If you follow Diver Laura on Twitter and/or Periscope, you know there was also an experimental live stream for a while – so watch for more of that in the future. Laura also shares these words of thanks, for “… Larry McLean for doing the honors of being our PADI Project AWARE Foundation Sponsor; Jan Shaw, the best beach-mom of all; and THE HUGEST of thanks to Tanner (and his Mom) for caring so much about our shared waters, and letting me be a part of this project… We should all care so much. As he says, ‘we’re citizens of the earth’.”

West Seattle Wednesday: Purim celebrations; Highland Park Action Committee; poems & stories; more…

March 23, 2016 10:36 am
|    Comments Off on West Seattle Wednesday: Purim celebrations; Highland Park Action Committee; poems & stories; more…
 |   West Seattle news | WS miscellaneous

(Barred owl, photographed by Mark Wangerin)

From the WSB West Seattle Event Calendar for the rest of today/tonight:

NETWORKING MEETUP: Noon-1:15 pm at West Seattle’s only coworking center, WS Office Junction (WSB sponsor) – all welcome. (6040 California SW)

WEDNESDAY AFTERNOON AT THE MOVIES: 1 pm at the Senior Center of West Seattle, this afternoon’s movie is “My Lucky Star” (1938) with Sonja Henie, Joan Davis, Cesar Romero. $1-$2 suggested donation. (4217 SW Oregon)

PURIM CELEBRATIONS: Two events tonight, with details on the WSB page for Holy Week, Easter, Purim, etc. – 6:30 pm at Kol HaNeshamah (6115 SW Hinds) and 8 pm for the West Seattle Torah Learning Center, at the WS Veterans Center (3618 SW Alaska).

GROUP RUN: Try water bottles and hydration belts during tonight’s 6:15 pm group run from West Seattle Runner (WSB sponsor) – all welcome. (2743 California SW)

HIGHLAND PARK ACTION COMMITTEE: 7 pm at Highland Park Improvement Club, join HPAC for an information-packed meeting:

RV Safe lot
Highland Park Elementary PTA – Highland Park Playground Improvement
West Duwamish Greenbelt Trails

New Business:
Update and recommendation for 4 projects for the 2016 Neighborhood Parks & Street Fund
Date for Highland Park Neighborhood Clean Up Day – Possible dates Saturday, April 30th or Saturday, May 7th 10 am – 2 pm – Focus on 3 areas

Facilitated discussion: Developing HPAC Structure
Review Monthly Meeting Time
Review Number of meetings per year

Possible Sub-Committees
Outreach and Community Engagement
Highland Park Playground Improvement
Street/Sidewalk/Alleyway Improvement
Community Survey

Facilitated discussion: Neighbor Assessment of Highland Park
Help us document neighborhood streets issues (speeding, accidents, etc.), lack of sidewalks, alleyways, and traffic issues for future grants, advocacy, and engagement.

(12th SW/SW Holden)

POEMS AND STORIES: 7 pm at C & P Coffee Company (WSB sponsor), the monthly gathering for poets, storytellers, and those who enjoy their work, including a community microphone. Larry Crist and Christine Clarke are tonight’s featured readers. (5612 California SW)

LOTS MORE – please check out our complete calendar for the rest of what’s up today/tonight/beyond.

New on the Easter, Etc. page: Saturday egg hunt @ Southwest TLC/Pool

March 23, 2016 9:09 am
|    Comments Off on New on the Easter, Etc. page: Saturday egg hunt @ Southwest TLC/Pool
 |   Fun stuff to do | West Seattle news

Along with a general reminder about our special page listing this week’s spring holiday/celebration activities/services, this morning we’re calling your attention to an egg hunt just added: The list of city locations with 10 am egg hunts on Saturday now includes Southwest Teen Life Center/Pool (2801 SW Thistle). This was NOT in the city’s spring community-center brochure nor on other lists circulated by the city, so it wasn’t on our page until a center rep told us it IS on, for up to age 9, at “10 am sharp” (arrive at 9:45) on Saturday, same time as the city-sponsored egg hunts elsewhere.

P.S. Anything else we’re missing? Not too late for us to add info – – thanks!

TRAFFIC/TRANSIT TODAY: What you need to know for Wednesday

(Click any view for a close-up; more cameras on the WSB Traffic page)

6:12 AM: Good morning. No incidents in or from West Seattle so far. A few notes:

SCHOOL’S OUT EARLY TODAY: Today is an early-release day (two hours) for Seattle Public Schools, which shifts the times you’ll see flashing beacons, buses, biking/walking students, etc., this afternoon.

ADDED POLITICAL RALLY FRIDAY: If you commute through SODO – note that presidential candidate Bernie Sanders announced last night he’s coming back to Seattle Friday for a Safeco Field rally (4 pm).

METRO CHANGES START SATURDAY: Another reminder that Saturday brings Metro’s next “service change,” including the RapidRide C and D Lines separating, with the C Line route ending in South Lake Union. See all the Metro info here.

P.S. For downtown workers/commuters – as of right now, the #ManInTree incident downtown continues. SDOT is tracking nearby lane/road closures.

8:11 AM: Multiple reports of general slowness.

8:39 AM: Still (as at least one commenter affirms) nothing specific to blame for this – just overall regional backups. The morning’s incidents are all in areas that don’t usually have any sort of direct effect on outbound traffic from here.

12:12 PM: If you haven’t heard, #ManInTree was down safely before noon, after about 25 hours. So that part of downtown should be back to something resembling normal traffic.