West Seattle, Washington
State and local health authorities are getting ready to sound the alarm, and that’s where we start tonight’s pandemic roundup:
‘URGENT’ BRIEFING TUESDAY: Every week, state and local leaders have media briefings about the pandemic. But we can’t recall the last one announced as “urgent” like this one was:
Urgent COVID-19 Response Media Briefing
Accelerated COVID-19 transmission is occurring across the state and time is running out to reverse course and flatten the curve. Join us for this important update on Tuesday afternoon and help us get the message out that people must act now to stop the spread from getting worse.
Top health authorities from the state, Seattle/King County, and Tacoma/Pierce County health departments are among the participants. This is set for 2:30 pm tomorrow and will be streamed here.
NEWEST KING COUNTY NUMBERS: On to today’s daily summary from Public Health – the cumulative countywide totals:
*31,244 people have tested positive, 378 more than yesterday’s total
*812 people have died, 1 more than yesterday’s total
*2,643 people have been hospitalized, 4 more than yesterday’s total
*573,962 people have been tested, 5,126 more than yesterday’s total
One week ago, the totals were 28,262/806/2,594/545,651.
STATEWIDE NUMBERS: See them here.
WORLDWIDE NUMBERS: See them – nation by nation – here.
HELP FOR SMALL BUSINESSES: The city plans to award additional $10,000 grants from its Small Business Stabilization Fund. You have until November 30th to apply.
NEED FOOD? Again this week, Food Lifeline will distribute free emergency boxes of food to anyone who shows up, 2-5 pm Friday (November 13th) at its South Park HQ, 815 S. 96th.
GOT SOMETHING TO REPORT? firstname.lastname@example.org or 206-293-6302, text/voice – thank you!
We talk so much about transportation, you might be getting bored of bridges, tired of tunnels, weary of water taxis … So on Thursday, travel a different road by watching the live presentation “Washington on Wheels: Odd and Innovative Transportation Ideas from the Pacific Northwest” – and participating! Here’s the announcement from the Southwest Seattle Historical Society:
‘Words, Writers, & SouthWest Stories,’ a historically based speaker series, is excited to announce that it is hosting Harriet Baskas for a live Zoom presentation on Thursday, November 12 at 6:00 PM. Baskas will deliver a presentation titled “Washington on Wheels: Odd and Innovative Transportation Ideas from the Pacific Northwest.”
Though Boeing is the best-known innovator in travel to have emerged from Washington State, there are many others. From canoe journeys to flying cars (that actually worked!), explore the history and culture of travel in Washington State. Author and broadcaster Harriet Baskas will take the audience on a tour of notable highlights of state transportation history, examining not just how we get around, but why we travel and where we might be going next.
The audience will be invited to share family stories of migration, memories of first flights and unforgettable car trips, and consider a future of autonomous cars and vacations in space.
Harriet Baskas has a MA in communications from the University of Washington, has served as the general manager for three Pacific Northwest radio stations, and has created award-winning radio for NPR. Her books include Hidden Treasures: What Museums Can’t or Won’t Show You. She currently writes about airports, air travel, and museums for outlets that include NBC News, CNBC, and USA Today. Baskas lives in Seattle.
Registration is required; registered participants will be emailed a link to the presentation on the date of the event. You can register here.
West Marginal Way SW, three times as busy as ever because of the West Seattle Bridge closure, is frequently the subject of seemingly dueling complaints – too much traffic, and too much speeding. SPD is taking action on the latter, according to an alert sent today by the Northwest Seaport Alliance, aimed at port truckers: “The Seattle Police Department is adding speed patrols to West Marginal Way SW between Highland Park Way SW and the Lower Spokane St bridge. Patrols are reporting unsafe speeds occurring in the area. Please slow down.” A search of Tweets by Beat suggests this has already started, with four violations listed today lone.
As the pandemic’s economic crunch continues, the city is offering a new round of $10,000 grants for small businesses. Previous grants went to 469 businesses – out of 9,000 that applied – and now the Small Business Stabilization Fund has money for 240 more. The application process started today and will continue through the end of the month. From the announcement:
To be eligible for a grant, a small business or non-profit must have 25 or fewer employees, be located within Seattle city limits, and have an annual net revenue at or below $2 million. Non-profits must explicitly provide economic opportunity supports through education programs and/or job training. In an attempt to prioritize funding to businesses that are more likely to have experienced the greatest economic impacts, OED will ensure that at least two-thirds of grant recipients will be selected from applications from businesses with five or fewer employees and from areas that are identified as high risk of displacement or highly disadvantaged. Those areas are determined by several socioeconomic factors to identify areas of the city that have been historically underserved and more likely to be disproportionally impacted by economic shocks. This fund also aims to better support creative industry small businesses and workers and will specifically allocate 10 percent of all grants—or 24 grants—to creative industry small businesses. All businesses and non-profit organizations that receive a grant must commit to not reducing wages and benefits provided prior to the COVID-19 emergency.
Future middle-schooler in the house? This reminder might be of interest:
Greater West Seattle Middle School Information Night Is Tonight!
Looking forward to sharing information about West Seattle’s middle-school options MONDAY, 11/9/20 from 6 pm-7:15 pm:
Check in here to attend the general session from 6:00 pm-6:15 pm. Next: You choose which group’s school session to attend by using the Zoom links provided. There will be three breakout sessions, each 20 minutes long, so you can check out any of the 11 middle schools participating from the independent, private, public, and charter sectors.
By Tracy Record
West Seattle Blog editor
Some new information today as the City Council got its first comprehensive West Seattle Bridge briefing since August.
The council’s independent consultant suggests a closer exploration of the repair option, it was revealed when City Councilmember Lisa Herbold asked council staffer Calvin Chow to talk about a memo the consultant sent councilmembers Friday. Here’s the memo (also embedded below):
More on that shortly.
Also, Transportation Committee chair Councilmember Alex Pedersen said Mayor Jenny Durkan has invited councilmembers to send her their individual repair-vs.-replace thoughts by week’s end.
And when Budget chair Councilmember Teresa Mosqueda pressed SDOT reps on the timeline for that key decision, director Sam Zimbabwe said that since they’re continuing to plan for both options, a final decision could theoretically wait as long as spring before they started losing time – though the need to seek federal/state funding would require action sooner.
Two notes in West Seattle Crime Watch this morning:
MAILBOX BREAK-INS: From Jonathan:
Just wanted to have everyone aware that our mailboxes were pried open November 7th PM and November 8th AM. 5948 Fauntleroy Way SW.
PERSONAL-SAFETY CLASSES: From Southwest Precinct Crime Prevention Coordinator Jennifer Danner, word of two upcoming personal-safety classes for women:
Learn proactive tips and steps you can take to enhance your personal safety taught by female Seattle police officers and female employees.
Our class goals:
-Know the important role your instincts and gut reactions play
-Discover potentially dangerous situations and how to avoid them
-Learn how to make a safety plan
-Decrease the odds of becoming a victim
About the class:
-This is a facilitated discussion and lecture about crime prevention and safety.
-This is not a self-defense class.
-This class is open to women of all ages and most appropriate for young women who are at least 14 yearx of age or older. For that reason, children should not attend.
7:33 AM: Thanks for the tips – there’s a major emergency response at 23rd/Myrtle. So far we’re hearing it’s a fire with at least three people hurt. We’re on our way to find out more.
7:37 AM: SFD says it’s an RV fire. Nearby residents saw and heard what they describe as “explosions” for a while but that’s stopped now. Address has been updated to 24th/Myrtle [map].
7:50 AM: Our crew has arrived; photo above. This is directly west of the vacant site where the Lam-Bow Apartments were demolished after one building was destroyed by fire, with a rebuild in the works.
8 AM: The original 23rd/Myrtle address was correct, though SFD still has this logged as 24th/Myrtle. Their investigator has been dispatched, as has a public-information officer, so more information should be available at the scene soon.
8:05 AM: Just talked to the incident commander. The explosions some nearby residents heard/felt during the fire were propane tanks. The incident commander also tells us 4 people were in the RV when this happened; 3 are being taken to Harborview.
8:56 AM: Police have reopened Myrtle west of Delridge. SFD still has an engine and investigator at the scene.
9:03 AM: SFD spokesperson David Cuerpo tells WSB two people were in critical condition when taken to the hospital, a 38-year-old woman and 26-year-old man, while a 41-year-old man was in serious condition, The fourth person was unhurt.
5:04 PM: Just went back to the scene. Seattle Public Utilities and USecology are there for storm-drain cleanup, The gutted RV is still there too.
5:54 PM: SPU spokesperson Sabrina Register adds a few details: “After learning of the fire this morning, Seattle Public Utilities dispatched a team to survey areas including Longfellow Creek. SPU Spill Response staff did not observe any pollutants in the creek but out of an abundance of caution, contacted US Ecology (contractor) to clean the road surface and one impacted catch basin (storm drain). That clean-up work is taking place this evening.”
11 PM: Investigators say the fire was accidental, started by a heater.
6:07 AM: Welcome to Monday, the 231st morning without the West Seattle Bridge.
Delridge project: 23rd SW remains closed at Delridge. This week’s other major work zones are previewed here. Note that there’ll be no work on Wednesday, for Veterans Day.
CHECK TRAFFIC BEFORE YOU GO
West Marginal Way/Highland Park Way:
Highland Park Way/Holden:
Here’s the 5-way intersection camera (Spokane/West Marginal/Delridge/Chelan):
Here’s the restricted-daytime-access (open to all 9 pm-5 am) low bridge:
The main detour route across the Duwamish River is the 1st Avenue South Bridge (map) . Here are two cameras:
The other major bridge across the river is the South Park Bridge (map). Here’s the nearest camera:
Going through South Park? Don’t speed. (Same goes for the other detour-route neighborhoods, like Highland Park, Riverview, and South Delridge.)
*Note – SDOT has fixed the @SDOTBridges Twitter feed, so you can check it for bridge openings.
Metro – Fare collection has resumed.
Water Taxi – No service on Wednesday because of the holiday.
Trouble on the roads/paths/water? Let us know – text (but not if you’re driving!) 206-293-6302.