West Seattle, Washington
11:40 PM: Another big emergency callout -this time on Sylvan Way by Sylvan Heights, reported as a driver hitting a tree. At least one person is reported to be hurt.
12:10 AM: A neighbor sent the photo and word that Sylvan is closed while a tow truck is awaited. The person in the car was rescued and taken to a hospital via ambulance.
12:34 AM: The street is open again.
10:02 PM: Big Seattle Fire response to the 8800 block of 9th SW [map]. Updates to come.
10:04 PM: SFD says it’s a small exterior fire at a vacant building. The response will be downsized.
10:23 PM: We’re at the scene. 9th is blocked just north of Henderson.
10:37 PM: Fire’s out. Firefighters described the scene as a “derelict building.” Cause is under investigation; no one was hurt.
11:41 PM: The “derelict building,” according to city records, is slated for demolition, to be replaced by four townhouses. It’s also been reported multiple times in recent years, most recently in a February complaint that described it as a “trash-filled broken-down house.”
Second-to-last night of the Stay Home/Stay Healthy order, and we’re moving on from the other big news of the day:
NEWEST KING COUNTY NUMBERS: From the Public Health daily-summary dashboard:
*8,054 people have tested positive, 48 more than yesterday
*556 people have died, up 2 from yesterday
One week ago, those numbers were 7,764 an 538.
STATEWIDE NUMBERS: See them here.
WORLDWIDE NUMBERS: More than 6 million people have tested positive. Most cases: U.S., Brazil, Russia, United Kingdom, Spain. See the breakdown, nation by nation, here.
BIG CHANGE AT FARMERS’ MARKET TOMORROW: Sunday will bring the fifth West Seattle Farmers’ Market since the coronavirus-crisis closure ended. And market managers say there’ll be a big change:
The market layout will look like a version of its former self with vendors in the middle of the street this week.
Otherwise, other modifications remain in place, including the one entrance at California/Alaska, with the line stretching east along Alaska. And don’t forget your face covering! Here’s the vendor list for this week.
GROCERY-SHOPPING UPDATES: As usual, the commenters have updates to share following our weekly grocery-shopping notes.
LIFE GOES ON: Donna B. sent this photo of a waterfront wedding on Alki last night:
GOT SOMETHING TO REPORT? firstname.lastname@example.org or 206-293-6302, text/voice – thank you!
5:04 PM: Mayor Jenny Durkan has just ordered a 5 pm citywide curfew – minutes before 5 pm – because downtown protests have turned destructive and dangerous.
AlertSeattle: The City of Seattle asking all residents to immediately disperse from downtown. The City has imposed an immediate curfew of 5 pm.
— AlertSeattle (@AlertSeattle) May 31, 2020
5:22 PM: Here’s the mayor’s news release:
Mayor Jenny A. Durkan, Police Chief Carmen Best, and Fire Chief Harold Scoggins announced an 5:00 p.m. curfew effective today, May 30 and tomorrow, May 31. Mayor Durkan will soon be signing an emergency order. The curfew will be in effect from 5:00 pm – 5:00 am, and during those hours residents and visitors should remain in their residence to the extent possible and should refrain from traveling in and through Seattle. The curfew is intended to prevent violence and widespread property damage, and to prevent the further community spread of COVID-19 through continued gathering.
“While most of those protests were peaceful, there have been isolated but significant events of violence and destruction. This temporary curfew is intended to preserve the health and safety of our residents by keeping our streets safe and accessible for essential workers and first responders and preventing the further spread of COVID-19,” said Mayor Durkan.
The temporary curfew does not impact people who need to commute to work during these hours, people experiencing homelessness, people in a medical emergency or people in a dangerous situation, first responders, health care workers, and the news media. In addition, the curfew does not require businesses to close while it is in effect, and it will not alter public transit schedules. The Mayor and Chiefs ask all residents and visitors to voluntarily abide by the curfew. The City does not intend to enforce the curfew, except for violations that result in public health and safety threats including fires, extensive property damage, and violence.
Today, the Seattle Police Department, Seattle Fire Department, and Seattle Department of Transportation monitored the demonstrations and stood ready to provide assistance, manage traffic impacts, and preserve health and safety. Staff from Seattle Parks and Recreation and the Seattle Department of Neighborhoods were downtown distributing hundreds of disposable masks to demonstrators.
5:25 PM: From the governor:
Gov. Jay Inslee today activated up to 200 members of the Washington National Guard in response to a request from the City of Seattle to help protect against property damage and manage crowds and traffic during downtown protests. Guard personnel will be unarmed and work under the direction of City of Seattle leadership.
The guard was activated by a letter from the governor to Maj. Gen. Bret Daugherty, commander of the Washington National Guard, as demonstrations were underway in Seattle protesting the death of George Floyd in Minnesota earlier this week.
“The National Guard is on stand by to assist the Seattle Police Department as requested by Mayor Durkan,” Inslee said. “They will be unarmed and assist with infrastructure protection and crowd movement. They will only be utilized if absolutely necessary and we appreciate their efforts to help in this important work.”
5:45 PM: The mayor is speaking with reporters at 6 pm. We’ll be phoning into that and will add notes.
6:10 PM: Still awaiting the mayor. Note that (as discussed in comments) at least a few West Seattle businesses have closed early because of the curfew – please let us know of any others (email@example.com, or text 206-293-6302). We’ll build a list here:
(adding as we hear of others)
6:18 PM: “For most of today, the demonstrators were peaceful,” says the mayor. “Unfortunately, in the late afternoon, (protests) downtown turned destructive and violent.” She draws a clear line between those who protested peacefully earlier, and those who turned violent later. The violent acts do not honor George Floyd, she notes, and won’t be tolerated. “We will take all steps necessary to protect residents and property …” She has issued three emergency orders: A civil emergency and a prohibition on weapons use, as well as the curfew tonight and tomorrow. (You can watch on Seattle Channel.) Both the mayor and fire chief have explained that firefighters were delayed from getting to some of the set fires downtown because it was unsafe.
After a few minutes of mayoral, police, and fire statements, it’s Q&A. First one: The timing of the curfew. The mayor says the 5 pm time was set at SPD’s recommendation “to get people safely home.” The mayor also notes that the statewide stay-home order hasn’t expired yet so people should be staying home anyway. In another response, she again differentiates the peaceful protesters who rallied earlier and those who “hijacked” the demonstration later and caused “such destruction and chaos.” The latter will not be allowed to eclipse “the message of hope, justice, and love,” she insists. She is then asked about earlier videos that appeared to show police using force, and she says that will be reviewed. But she also says force used against officers was not appropriate either.
In closing at 6:38 pm, she reiterates support for those who are grieving, and for their right to protest, but vows to restore order “and hold those people accountable” who caused the “chaos and destruction.” She says they don’t know yet if, like some other cities, those who caused it were from out of town.
8:25 PM: In case you were wondering: We just drove through the West Seattle business districts. Looked like most restaurants that are open for takeout/delivery this time of night were still open. Streets were relatively empty.
12:43 AM: Detailed Metro alert from late Saturday night:
Metro buses are not serving the downtown core area between Denny Way and Edgar Martinez Dr S, due to the events currently taking place in that area in conjunction with the City of Seattle’s curfew.
Metro riders are advised to avoid the downtown area, be aware of conditions in their immediate vicinity that my change quickly, revise travel plans as needed, and most importantly, stay safe.
As of 9:00 PM and until the end of service, including late night routes that operate after 1:00 AM, Metro plans the following, however, changes could occur without notice:
Routes 7 and 49 are staying east of downtown Seattle along Broadway and Boren through the Capitol Hill and First Hill areas.
Routes 10 and 12 are canceled.
Route 36 is turning back at S Jackson Street and will not serve Queen Anne.
Routes heading toward downtown from the north end will turn back or be rerouted at – or near – Denny Way, and will not continue into downtown Seattle. Board these routes northbound at stops north of Denny Way.
Routes heading toward downtown from the south end will turn back or be rerouted at – or near – Edgar Martinez Dr S, and will not continue into downtown Seattle. Board these routes southbound at stops south of Edgar Martinez Dr S.
Most routes (except trolley routes) that normally travel through downtown Seattle to continue as other routes – such as routes 5 and 21 or 24 and 124 – will continue to their destinations at each end, but will travel via non-stop routing that avoids the downtown core area.
Routes 40, 70 and the RapidRide D Line will serve their stops on Sixth Avenue S, but will not serve downtown Seattle south of Denny Way.
Metro Route 41 and Sound Transit Express Route 522 are not traveling south of Northgate Transit Center; riders who need to go south from there can transfer to Route 40 or other service, depending on their destination.
Eastside I-90 routes are terminating at Mercer Island and not continuing to downtown Seattle.
Eastside SR 520 routes are terminating at the South Kirkland P&R, except for Metro Route 255 and ST Route 545, which are continuing to the University District.
Link light rail is operating, but with some station closures and changing conditions; check Sound Transit Link alerts.
Use regularly published timetables, but expect likely significant delays during the operation described above. Predicted departure times in customer information apps will not be accurate.
Metro expects to operate regularly scheduled service at the start of Sunday morning. Watch for updates during the day on Sunday.
In contrast to the protest downtown, in West Seattle this afternoon, anti-racism demonstrators stood quietly in the rain on multiple street corners:
Thanks to Jena for the last-minute tip about this, organized on social media as “a peaceful show of support for our black and brown community” as anti-racism protests continue nationwide in the wake of the Minneapolis killing of George Floyd.
One group walked the all-ways crossing in The Junction:
On one of those corners, the Easy Street marquee has displayed George Floyd’s name for at least 3 days – we tweeted this photo on Thursday:
ORIGINAL 2:56 PM NOTE: Love sci-fi/fantasy? You might want to watch the Nebula Awards online tonight. West Seattle writer Cat Rambo sent the info – she’s up for a Nebula Award for her book “Carpe Glitter.” The ceremony starts at 5 pm – here’s the trailer for the event, which is part of a three-day conference:
Cat notes that LeVar Burton, seen at the trailer’s end, is presenting the Andre Norton Award. (Last month, you might recall, he read one of her stories for an online audience.) Her work is a finalist in the Novelette category; the full list of Nebula finalists is here.
8:36 PM: As noted in comments, and earlier via Twitter, Cat Rambo won! Congratulations!
Even if you didn’t see this morning’s thunderstorm, you probably heard it! Thanks to everyone who sent photos of the storm, and what preceded it. Above, Kersti Muul caught lightning on camera. Below, the clouds themselves put on a show – first, from Lance Merkin @ Alki:
Next, James Tilley‘s photo shows the rain advancing toward that formation:
And from Shorewood, Jim Edwards sent this view:
Deb Barker scanned the sky for this video view:
A few hours before the storm, @WestSeaWX tweeted this gorgeous sunrise view:
As for the forecast, the thunderstorms have passed, but more rain is on the way, and breezy conditions too.
11:40 AM: Another try today for the historic SpaceX Crew Dragon launch – and West Seattle educator Alice Enevoldsen is webcasting again, starting shortly. Go here for the quick required registration to join via Zoom.
11:48 AM: Alice’s webcast has begun. Launch is still on for 12:22 pm.
12:23 PM: Lifted off! (See it on Twitter.) … First American astronauts to launch from the U.S. since the last shuttle mission in 2011.
We’ve seen many heart-tugging videos with schools’ staff showing students how much they’re missed – and vice versa. This time, though, it’s not just the students who are missed, but also their parents/caregivers – because cooperative preschool is for them as well as their little ones! Jen Giomi sent the clip, explaining, “South Seattle College Cooperative Preschools managed to keep the program intact and move to online operations for all of spring quarter, a heavy lift for sure. Here is a link to a video that we made for our community to express our gratitude. We are so grateful to our community and the legacy of all of the Co-op Preschool families in the community.”
Less than a week before the about-to-expire Stay Home/Stay Healthy order kicked in, we started tracking local standalone grocery stores’ hours and policies – updating this list since March 18th. Every Saturday after that, starting March 21st, we’ve published a grocery-shopping update. After several stores/chains expanded their hours in the past few weeks, no changes are reported this week. One store has an update of note: PCC West Seattle notes that “as we prepare for Phase 2 of the re-opening of our counties, we will keep our stores at 30% capacity. We appreciate your patience should you need to wait briefly before shopping.” P.S. Even if your store’s not crowded, health authorities continue to stress that grocery shopping is an important time to wear your face covering. … Anything different at YOUR favorite store this week?
Might be blustery tonight, so this is a reminder to be sure you haven’t left anything outside these past few warm days that you wouldn’t want to see caught in a storm. The forecast says it’ll be very rainy – potentially more than an inch! – tonight, and breezy too, out of the south/southwest.
ADDED 8:17 AM: Yes, that’s thunder!