West Seattle, Washington
The frosted fishing pier at Seacrest was the clearest photo we got of the slickness that caused some trouble around West Seattle on Monday morning. With a similar forecast for Tuesday, and patchy fog already out there with near-freezing temps tonight, you’ll want to be extra careful whether driving, riding, or walking. We asked SDOT what’s planned; spokesperson Dawn Schellenberg replied, “Our crews will be out tonight treating right-of-way as needed.” If you encounter an icy patch of public path/road that needs attention, call 206-684-ROAD. (And then please let us know so we can include it in our coverage, which will start again Tuesday at 5:30 am.)
Family and friends invite the community to celebrate the life of Scott Rasmussen one week from Saturday:
There will be a Celebration of Life for our wonderful friend Scott Rasmussen on Saturday, January 26, 2019 at 3:00 PM at the Chelan Café in West Seattle….one of his favorite spots!
We ask that you bring your good memories of Scotty to share. Please also bring any favorite photos you have of Scotty, as well as a few copies in case others would like to have one. There will be food at the Celebration, as well as a “No Host” bar.
Come raise a toast to Scotty, the “Mayor of Alki,” and all the great memories he created for us!
Saturday, 1/26/19 @ 3:00 PM
3527 Chelan Ave SW
(WSB publishes West Seattle obituaries by request, free of charge. Please e-mail the text, and a photo if available, to firstname.lastname@example.org)
After more than 38 years practicing dentistry in West Seattle – the first half of that with his dad – Dr. George Naden is retiring. We were invited to stop by his retirement celebration Sunday afternoon at Youngstown Cultural Arts Center.
Dr. Naden isn’t just a dentist – he’s also a rower, runner, bike rider, and skier, and musician. He co-founding the Tangletown String Band, with which he played at the party.
Dr. Naden says he’s not sure what most he’s looking forward to in retirement – just sure that new adventures await. *His practice at 4000 SW Admiral Way has been taken over by Dr. Igor Tverskoy. (Thanks to his longtime hygienist Shelley Lebert for letting us know about the celebration – her work at the practice goes back to George’s dad Dr. Tom Naden, who retired in 1999!)
5:56 PM: What started as a mid-size SFD call has just upsized to a “full response” for a house fire in the 4400 block of 46th SW. Radio communication describes the fire as centered in the house’s attic.
6:12 PM: Added a photo from WSB’s Katie Meyer, who reports smoke but no visible flames.
6:15 PM: WSB’s Patrick Sand reports that it was a small attic fire, is out, and firefighters are winding down their operation.
(SEE OUR MORNING COVERAGE HERE)
3:30 PM: Good afternoon! We’re back to watch the journey home. For starters, Dale sends word that the 4000 block of SW Oregon should be avoided – police are there handling a crash.
3:57 PM: All clear. Incident Response Team truck was just leaving.
4:17 PM: From SDOT: “We’re seeing light traffic on major roads downtown, but traffic is picking up on Mercer St EB, I-5 SB into downtown, and on the West Seattle Bridge EB toward I-5.”
4:35 PM: If you’re choosing your route home, 1st Avenue on the south side of downtown looks good, per updates from a texter.
5:20 PM: As pointed out in comments, the TV helicopters are back over the bridge … South of downtown, a crash is reported at 1st and Holgate. On the northbound side, but still – FYI.
5:31 PM: The Water Taxi sends an official announcement of the adjustment reported earlier in a comment by SeattleNewbie: “During this first evening commute of #Realign99, crews are testing a new boarding procedure at Pier 52. Riders can pretap ORCA cards to prepay in order to expedite boarding during this period of high demand.” … Meantime, our Amazon-bus commuter tipster says it was a half-hour ride home just now, southbound I-5 to the West Seattle Bridge.
3:31 PM: Toplines from this afternoon’s briefing at Metro‘s Transit Operations Center east of the stadiums, led by King County Executive Dow Constantine and Metro deputy general manager Terry White: Things this morning went “fairly smoothly.” They addressed both county transit services, Metro buses and the King County Water Taxi. And the increase in ridership for the latter was described as even more than we’d heard at the pier this morning: 1,350 passengers this morning, 350 passengers on a typical morning this time of year.
They can handle twice that, and there’s still room at the temporary Pier 2 parking lot, so try the WT if you can. As for the various routing changes readers reported in comment discussion – they didn’t know yet if any would be formalized for tomorrow and beyond. As for the extra buses held at the ready in case more capacity was needed, they transported more than 300 people, mostly on the 120 and E Line. More to come, including video of the briefing.
4:43 PM: Here’s the video:
We also got a quick look inside the center, first time we had visited since the C Line’s launch inaugurated major West Seattle changes more than six years ago:
The center is where Metro is in constant communication with its drivers – one corner also hosts the customer call center, too. We asked about the changes-on-the-fly reported by some commenters this morning; Metro hadn’t yet had the afternoon meeting at which they planned to discuss how that went, with an eye toward tomorrow morning.
On this third day of Highway 99-less-ness, the #Realign99 work itself is going well, according to WSDOT‘s project deputy administrator Dave Sowers. That’s what he told reporters on a late-morning conference call. One bit of the ramp-building/tunnel-connecting work is even a bit ahead of schedule, Sowers said. But he also said there’s zero chance the tunnel will open early – they’re sticking to their plan for a February 2-3 celebration weekend, and then (assuming all goes well) the tunnel opening in time for the Monday, February 4th, morning commute. We’re on our way now to a Metro/Water Taxi-specific briefing in SODO; more to come.
If you see Seattle Fire units headed from West Seattle and SODO to Harbor Island, here’s what’s going on – a “rescue extrication” dispatch for what’s described on the scanner as a “industrial accident.” They’re headed to Vigor Industrial to help a man who so far is described as in stable condition, possibly with a leg injury. The first crew on scene has just reported that the patient is “not trapped” so the response is being downsized.
Two reader reports in West Seattle Crime Watch, and a reminder:
STOLEN CAR: The 2012 Ford Focus, license BFH4131, in the photo above “was stolen from 38th Ave between Hanford and Stevens some time between Wednesday evening 1/9 and Friday afternoon 1/11.” If you see it, call 911.
STOLEN MAIL, FOUND: From DeAnna: “FYI: A pile of mail was found in our yard on the 9400 block of 5th Ave SW on Friday morning – several addresses – some of the envelopes had been opened and contents removed. We reported it to non-emergency police number and were told they’d come check it out when they could. It was still here this morning so I bundled it, put a note on it for USPS, and put it in our outgoing mailbox.”
REMINDER: Got a question/concern for police? Your next chance to ask them face-to-face is Tuesday night, 7 pm, when the West Seattle Crime Prevention Council meets at the Southwest Precinct (2300 SW Webster).
From the WSB West Seattle Event Calendar:
BLUE ANGELS JET VISITING: As noted here on Sunday, this afternoon the #7 Blue Angels jet is scheduled to land at nearby Boeing Field for the midwinter planning visit.
WEST SEATTLE PRESCHOOL FAIR: 5:30 pm-7:30 pm at St. John the Baptist Episcopal Church, talk with reps from multiple local preschools! Free, and the whole family’s welcome, but they’d appreciate if you pre-registered here. (3050 California SW)
EVENING BOOK GROUPS: Two at 6:45 pm at local libraries tonight – at Southwest Library (9010 35th SW), this month’s book is “The Last Brother” by Nathacha Appanah; at West Seattle (Admiral) Library (2306 42nd SW), this month’s book is “Shrill: Notes from a Loud Woman” by Lindy West.
MONDAY QUIZ: 7:30 pm, all-ages quiz, with prizes, at The Skylark. (3803 Delridge Way SW)
SEE WHAT ELSE IS UP … by browsing our complete calendar!
5:30 AM: Good morning! As promised, we’re on watch early for the first post-Viaduct commute. No outbound trouble reported so far.
5:40 AM: WSDOT reports a collision on NB I-5 downtown: “in the gore point on NB 5 near Seneca; it isn’t blocking anything, but people are seeing it and slowing, so we are seeing a bit heavier traffic in that area.”
6:04 AM: Our crew is now headed to Seacrest to report on the Water Taxi commute for the rest of the morning, in addition to everything else we’re monitoring.
6:28 AM: Solid brake lights on the eastbound bridge. And an interesting report in comments – Route 56 did stop at the light-rail station, something Metro said they wouldn’t do. Please keep us all updated on anomalies (we’ll ask at the media briefings/Q&A sessions later). Also – wherever you see a temporary no-parking sign, TAKE IT SERIOUSLY!
Some of those zones are meant as holding zones for added buses that might be needed. … Meantime, still lots of room on the Water Taxi. The county isn’t providing passenger counts so far but we counted about 80 people boarding the one that’s about to leave.
6:40 AM: Update – 112 on that sailing. Still room (both boats on the WS run have 200+ capacity). Also, the low bridge opened for 11 minutes. Note that the temporary restrictions are in effect 7-10 am and 2-5 pm, and even during that time, it can still open for 5,000-gross-ton-plus vessels.
6:58 AM: 4700 block of West Marginal Way SW (by the Duwamish Longhouse) has a Seattle Fire “rescue extrication” response headed that way for a crash that is reported to be possibly “in a wooded area.” … Update: Car on roof, off road, one person hurt. Response is still likely to be affecting W. Marginal Way flow for a while.
7:12 AM: Water Taxi dock busy but NOT over capacity, still. Most-recent boat left with 110+ people. Here’s the line:
Marination Ma Kai at the dock is opening at 7 am for breakfast.
Meantime: Andy tells us that West Marginal near the Longhouse-vicinity crash scene is slick – temps this morning were close to freezing. We’re also told traffic there IS getting by despite the emergency response. … Thanks to everyone who’s sharing their experience in comments!
7:39 AM: The headline seems to be, everybody left early so backups started earlier. Meantime back at the dock, sailings are now surpassing 200 (getting closer to capacity). King County Executive Dow Constantine, longtime WT champion, is at the dock too (in photo with KC Marine Division’s Paul Brodeur):
7:49 AM: West Seattle-residing Seattle Times transportation reporter Mike Lindblom tweeted that the 7:30 am bike counter on the “low bridge” showed 278. Meantime, most-recent Water Taxi run was just under 100. The Metro supervisor keeping watch on the temporary parking lot at Pier 2 tells us it’s only about a quarter full – free shuttle to the dock – so if you’re still considering how to get off the peninsula, that’s an option.
8:03 AM: A warning from Rebecca: “Please post a warning ASAP about the northern tip of California Ave where the street makes a sharp turn. I just saw two bicyclists and a moped wipe out there!! Very slippery right now.” She sent this photo:
(Rebecca adds that Ferry Avenue is slick too.) Meantime, bus riders say things are going relatively well – including private transit; an Amazon bus rider from The Junction said the 7 am trip only took five minutes longer than last week.
8:23 AM: SDOT reports “So far, light traffic on major roads in Downtown Seattle.”
8:38 AM: The 8:15 am Water Taxi had 139 people on board. KC Marine Division confirms that they are leaving on schedule even if there are people waiting – Heather e-mailed us about this and said about 15 people were affected at one point during the 6 am hour; our crew hasn’t seen a major amount of this happening, but still, be aware – they are loading until one minute before scheduled departure, and then taking off. Also, the free shuttles have been pretty much at capacity.
(That’s the San Juan Clipper, the second boat on the West Seattle run during this extra-service time.)
8:47 PM: And a big-picture stat – through 8:35, just under 1,200 passengers on Water Taxi runs this morning, 66 percent above normal this time of year. Ride2 has had 150 riders (we’re checking on commenters’ reports of app glitches).
9 AM: If you’ve waited to leave – this would seem to be a pretty great time. We added to the array of cameras on our Traffic page so you can see for yourself beyond the four we are showcasing above.
9:27 AM: Another icy-road report, just in via text:
Might be worth noting in your traffic reporting that Snake Hill on the way to Brandon is terribly terribly icy. I just picked up and took home a couple of bicyclists I came upon who had wiped out on their way down. Bumped and bruised and broke a one of the bikes. Another route to Delridge is advised.
9:43 AM: Don’t get complacent, is the reminder … everybody who made a change today DEFINITELY helped. We’ll be watching traffic through the day and will have a PM report too with an ear on getting back this way. We also expect morning post-mortems from the transportation agencies in a conference call in less than 2 hours, and a Metro briefing at 1:30 pm, so stand by for updates! Thanks again for texting/calling 206-293-6302 (our round-the-clock hotline, in its 12th year) when there’s something to report.