West Seattle, Washington
Expanded vaccination eligibility tops tonight’s pandemic roundup:
400,000 MORE ARE ELIGIBLE: As reported here during the governor’s mid-afternoon briefing, the “everyone’s eligible” age in our state has just dropped five years, to 65. But that doesn’t mean everyone 65 and older can get vaccinated immediately – not enough doses have been delivered. However, only 42 percent of what’s been received in Washington so far has been administered, so it’s hoped that broadening the eligibility will raise that percentage. The governor also says there’s a deadline now – vaccine has to be given within a week of a provider receiving it.
WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW: Are you eligible? This website will tell you. If you are, it should also point you to places that have received vaccine. Also, this website has a list. In general, though, you’re urged to consult your health-care provider first.
COUNTY COUNCIL PROPOSAL: When the King County Council meets tomorrow, accelerating vaccination is on its agenda. Here’s the announcement:
With vaccination rollouts hitting snags nationwide, the King County Council will on Tuesday consider legislation to ensure all the resources of King County can be brought to bear in ensuring everyone has access to the COVID-19 vaccine.
Sponsored by King County Councilmembers Rod Dembowski, Jeanne Kohl-Welles, Reagan Dunn, and Pete Von Reichbauer, it would require the Executive to lay out a detailed and robust plan to deliver the vaccines countywide, lower barriers to access, and have most King County residents vaccinated by June, with priority for older people and others at higher risk of death. The legislation will be considered and could be approved at the full council meeting Tuesday.
The 1 pm meeting will be livestreamed here.
NEWEST KING COUNTY NUMBERS: No update today (and we haven’t yet found an explanation – the county has not skipped holidays previously) – so no daily summary from Seattle-King County Public Health.
STATEWIDE NUMBERS: See them here.
WORLDWIDE NUMBERS: 95.5 million cases, 2,022,000+ deaths. See the other stats – nation by nation – here.
GOT SOMETHING TO REPORT? firstname.lastname@example.org or 206-293-6302, text/voice – thank you!
We wanted to thank everyone who turned out today, 23 folks put in over 52 hours of time to help pick up, spruce up and do demo work here in Highland Park.
We filled multiple bags with roadside trash from the Holden/Highland Park Way detour route [please don’t litter folks] and from adjacent Riverview Park and throughout the neighborhood.
A small number of highly motivated, dedicated volunteers worked to pull down 100-year-old plaster from the Club dance hall ceiling preparing for the refresh to come. Special thanks to Peter, Bruce, Billy, Greg, Emory, and Shawn for a dusty job well done!
So grateful to all and thankful we live in this caring, involved community!
Kay Kirkpatrick/ trustee for HPIC &
Craig Rankin/ Chair for HPAC
P.S. Your next chance to get involved with the Highland Park community is at HPAC’s monthly meeting, 7 pm Wednesday, January 27th – an agenda preview and participation link are on the HPAC website.
We got questions this afternoon about an emergency response that brought police and firefighters to the Admiral Way Bridge this afternoon. It was over before we could get there. Here’s the SPD summary of what happened:
Officers responded to the 3900 block of SW Admiral Way overpass for a 911 call where the caller reported a male had his hands on the railing and a female was holding him back. When officers arrived on scene, the male jumped over the railing and was dangling from the bridge. The officers were able to grab the subjects by his wrists to prevent him from falling. Two community members saw what was happening and were able to grab some rope to secure the subject to the railing until more officers arrived. Once more officers arrived on scene, they were able to pull the subject back over the railing to safety. The subject was a 17-year-old missing juvenile and was transported to the hospital.
As always, when we mention suicide or an attempt, we want you to know how to get help for yourself or someone contemplating self-harm: The Crisis Connections hotline is 206-464-3222.
P.S. Southwest Precinct Lt. Dorothy Kim tells WSB that wasn’t the only incident today in which officers saved a life. They were called to the scene of an apparent drug overdose in West Seattle and arrived before SFD to find the person not breathing and without a pulse: “The officers, who are also EMTs, started CPR and subsequently administered Narcan.” That restarted the person’s heart; more CPR, and another Narcan dose after SFD’s arrival, revived them, and they were taken to the hospital.
3:04 PM: Right now, many pandemic-related questions are focused on vaccination availability – people wondering when and how they will get vaccine access. Viewable above (
live and archived afterward), Gov. Jay Inslee is providing updates. We’ll add notes as it goes.
Inslee says it’s “the start of what we think of as the second stage of our vaccination initiative” – and says he has six announcements. First, the state is moving into Phase 1B of vaccinations, and changing the first tier so all Washingtonians 65 and older are eligible to get vaccinated immediately.
Also, those 50 and over who are living in “multigenerational households” are eligible immediately. (Note: This does not apply to parents living with children, but rather people giving cqre to someone such as a grandchild or niece/nephew, the state says.) Once about half the 1B “first tier” is vaccinated, they’ll move to the next tier.
2nd announcement: A statewide goal to make 45,000 vaccinations a day available in Washington as soon as possible. That’s three times the current rate. “Over the next several months we’ll be building toward that goal.” That’s dependent on receiving “more doses from the federal government,” he cautions.
3rd announcement: “We’re going to set up mass vaccination sites statewide,” with National Guard and other support. He lists four sites for starters, none in Seattle or King County (though as he notes, King County has some under development).
4th announcement: New criteria to ensure health-care providers are administering the vaccine appropriately – 95 percent of vaccine doses must be given within a week of being received by a provider. Any doses already received have to be given by next Sunday.
5th announcement: PhaseFinder is being launched so you can figure out where you are in terms of eligibility. He says that’s supposed to help you figure out where to get vaccinated, too. Here’s the link.
6th announcement: A public-private partnership to help marshal vaccination efforts. “We are going to mobilize thousands of people to save people from this virus.” He introduces pre-announced guests including reps of Microsoft, Starbucks, Kaiser Permanente, Sea Mar Community Health, and SEIU Local 1199.
3:24 PM: So far the execs haven’t offered specifics on their roles except that they’re supporting the effort. Kaiser Permanente Washington’s president notes that her company has mass-vaccination experience and is “all in.”
3:33 PM: Now speaking, new Health Secretary Dr. Umair Shah. He says the state has given more than 294,000 vaccine doses so far – 42 percent of what the state’s received – a better percentage than last week’s briefing. He stresses again that starting Phase 1B-1 means everyone 65 and older is eligible. He says those in 1B-1 should start hearing from their providers,. If you’re not in 1B-1, “continue to be patient.” But he also says they’re stressing measures to ensure leftover vaccine will not go to waste – giving providers some discretion (stand by for details on that).
3:45 PM: Now Q&A. First question about how many wasted doses – no specific number yet but “very minimal.” … The governor says “partners'” strategy previously might have been “we’ll wait for the doses and then figure out how to get them out” (paraphrasing), but now the plan is to plan to be ready for whatever arrives. He also noted that 2,400 pharmacies are now going to be part of the delivery system. … Next question observes, as we noted above, that it’s not clear what the “partners” will be doing, so they’re asking for elaboration. Also: How do you find out? Dr. Shah says providers have plans for contacting their members/patients; also, PhaseFinder is supposed to show locations near you “where the vaccine has been delivered.” He adds that another tool will be launched within two days – a dashboard with more info on how much vaccine has been received and administered, by county. … State officials promise they’ll make it easier to find out where the vaccine is. The governor adds that “the goal is to give people many kinds of opportunities.” But he cautions that 1.5 million are now eligible – and they only have a tenth of the supply that would require – so be patient. (Added: The state is getting 100,000 “first doses” each week right now.)
3:57 PM: Now that the governor’s eligible (69 years old), he says he plans to get vaccinated within several days (along with wife Trudi Inslee). … How can the state get more vaccine? Pfizer has assured the state that they’re increasing production, the governor says, for one. “We should have high confidence that the numbers of doses will increase in coming months.” He also urges providers to make appointments rather than holding back for fear they won’t have vaccine. … The briefing wraps up at 4:13 pm; the archived video should be available above shortly.
BOTTOM LINE: Though many more people are eligible, there’s not enough vaccine available – yet – for them all to get it immediately. Public Health Seattle/King County elaborates on this here. … Here’s what the governor’s website has published about all this.
The AT&T store site at California/Fauntleroy has been up for lease for nine months, according to the Commercial MLS website (the store’s still open). Now, city records suggest a new tenant has been found – Ezell’s Famous Chicken, the Seattle-based fried-chicken chain with a national reputation. The plan is shown on a renovation-permit application filed Friday; we found it while doing routine research in city online records.
West Seattle’s fried-chicken scene has been in flux in recent years – KFC closed in 2018 in the spot that now holds Habit Burger, while Harry’s Chicken Joint departed in 2019 from the space now holding HeartBeet Organic Superfoods Café. But Ma’ono is going strong, and chicken fans who don’t mind driving a few miles south to White Center have their choice of Popeye’s, Bok-a-Bok, or KFC.
Ezell’s, however, is considered fried-chicken royalty – a 36-year-old company with legions of fans including, famously, Oprah Winfrey. They’ve grown to 16 locations, as far-flung as Spokane and Tigard, Oregon; the nearest to West Seattle are in the Central District and Rainier Valley (further than they used to be, with the bridge out).
The corner space in Morgan Junction was built when the old West Seattle Thriftway (WSB sponsor) was rebuilt following the 1997 fire. Its original tenant was a Café Starbucks – a food-service concept the company eventually ditched – that only lasted a year, closing in early 2000. The space became a Tully’s Coffee shop a few months later; that lasted a decade, and cell-phone retail followed.
Again, this is an early-stage filing – on occasion those fall through, so don’t count your (fried) chicken until it’s hatched, as the saying goes. We have a message out to an Ezell’s spokesperson for comment on status and timeline.
First offer of this kind that we’ve heard of since the West Seattle Junction Association‘s four parking lots switched from free to fee last Friday: fishing-and-outdoor-gear shop Emerald Water Anglers (4502 42nd SW; WSB sponsor) is offering to cover customers’ parking cost for the lot across the street: “Spend $25 while here and we will credit you back your $2 on your sale.” They’re open until 7 pm; like many independent local businesses, they offer online shopping too, so you don’t have to park at all.
Thanks for the tips and photos. Avoid Sylvan Way right now – there are two crashes, one near Sylvan Ridge, one near the Forest Lawn (WSB sponsor) funeral home. In the former, the driver appears to have hit a tree; our tipsters say that’s the secodn driver vs. tree(s) crash on Sylvan in less than a week.
Notes for the start of a new week:
REV. DR. MARTIN LUTHER KING JR. DAY HOLIDAY NOTES: No school … Most government offices (whether virtual or physical) are closed … No USPS mail … Most banks are closed … If you have Monday trash/recycling service, it’s operating as usual.
DAY OF SERVICE ON ALKI: Beach cleanup starting at 10:30 am – details here.
Other Day of Service events are full so far as we’ve found, but if you know of any others needing last-minute help, let us know!
GOVERNOR’S BRIEFING ON VACCINATION PLAN: Just announced this morning, Gov. Inslee plans a 3 pm briefing “to announce a series of changes to vaccine administration and unveil a new statewide public-private partnership for the state’s vaccine distribution plan.” Announced guests include reps from Microsoft, Starbucks, Kaiser Permanente, Sea Mar, and SEIU Local 1199. We plan to carry it live; you can also find the stream here.
6:07 AM: It’s Monday, January 18th, Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Day, and the 301st morning without the West Seattle Bridge.
Water Taxi – No service on the holiday
Link light rail – on a Saturday schedule for the holiday
ROAD (ETC.) WORK
Delridge project – SW Thistle is closed between Delridge and 20th. Some work will be happening on the corridor today. Here’s what else is happening this week.
California and Myrtle – The sewer-repair project continues – if driving/riding on California, watch out for the bumps.
Sylvan Way work – Also beware of the bumps left after this weekend work.
Arbor Heights project – Gas-line replacement work on SW 104th is scheduled to continue.
CHECK TRAFFIC BEFORE YOU GO
Low Bridge: Second week for automated enforcement cameras, while restrictions are in effect 5 am-9 pm daily.
West Marginal Way at Highland Park Way:
Highland Park Way/Holden:
The 5-way intersection (Spokane/West Marginal/Delridge/Chelan):
The main detour route across the Duwamish River, the 1st Avenue South Bridge (map) . Here are two cameras:
The other major bridge across the river – the South Park Bridge (map). Here’s the nearest camera:
Going through South Park? Don’t speed. (Same goes for all the other detour-route neighborhoods!)
To check for bridges’ marine-traffic openings, see the @SDOTBridges Twitter feed.
Trouble on the roads/paths/water? Let us know – text (but not if you’re driving!) 206-293-6302.