West Seattle, Washington
49 weeks have now passed since the Friday night announcement of the first King County case of COVID-19. Here are tonight’s updates:
KING COUNTY NUMBERS: From the Public Health daily-summary page, cumulative totals:
*78,090 people have tested positive, 249 more than yesterday’s total
*1,292 people have died, 13 more than yesterday’s total
*4,865 people have been hospitalized, 19 more than yesterday’s total
*844,187 people have been tested, 2,494 more than yesterday’s total
Now, our weekly check of key numbers on the COVID Vaccination Among King County Residents dashboard:
*239,821 people have received one dose
*63,655 people have received both doses
*296,225 doses have been allocated to King County
One week ago, the first four totals were 76,345/1,249/4,771/826,565, and the vaccination totals were 181,108/37,984/232,350.
STATEWIDE NUMBERS: See them here.
WORLDWIDE NUMBERS: 105.3 million cases, 2,299,000+ deaths – see the nation-by-nation numbers here.
SENIOR CENTER OFFERS TO BE VACCINATION SITE: Along with working to help its members navigate the maze of trying to find vaccination appointments, the Senior Center of West Seattle has offered to be a vaccination site. The county says vaccine supplies are too tight to do anything right now but put it on a list.
COUNTY HEALTH OFFICER’S BRIEFING: In his weekly briefing today, Dr. Jeff Duchin said that while decreasing case numbers “are great,” they are not anywhere near a “safe level.” And, given the variants’ ascent, he said he feels “we’re in the eye of a hurricane.” He also ran through other trends as well as the vaccination situation – you can watch the briefing here.
GOT INFO OR PHOTOS? firstname.lastname@example.org or text/voice 206-293-6302 – thank you!
Access to the West Seattle low bridge has been limited, in part, to save space for the port truck traffic expected when Terminal 5 goes back into the cargo business, after the first phase of a $340 million modernization project. That was supposed to happen this June. Then suddenly, late Thursday, the Northwest Seaport Alliance announced T-5’s new north berth won’t open until the first quarter of next year. That means the city is saving space for trucks that won’t need it for a year or so – by which time the high bridge should be close to reopening. So as promised, we followed up with SDOT today to ask what that means to low-bridge access policy. In short: They’re working on it. SDOT spokesperson Ethan Bergerson told WSB, “We plan to address this as part of our update to the West Seattle Bridge Community Task Force next week. We’re developing a staff recommendation now in response to this new development, and would then still plan to work with the Low Bridge subcommittee to formalize any changes to the access policy.” The Community Task Force meets at 4 pm next Thursday (February 11th). Meantime, we also asked NWSA for elaboration on the “unforeseen circumstances” cited as factoring into the T-5 delay; spokesperson Melanie Stambaugh would not comment except to reiterate that details will be provided at the March 2nd meeting of the NWSA’s managing members (Seattle and Tacoma port commissioners).
Alicia reports that more than 50 students, family members, and staff participated. Delridge is torn up in front of their school, so they gathered along Sylvan Way, outside High Point Neighborhood House.
Alicia adds, “We enjoyed the honking horns and waves from passing cars!”
M/V Spirit of Kingston will be on the West Seattle Water Taxi route at least a few more days, according to King County Metro. We checked today to see if M/V Doc Maynard would return to the run next week, since this was the last day of the announced two-week period for which it shifted to the Vashon run, filling in for M/V Sally Fox. Metro spokesperson Torie Rynning replied, “We are now looking to restore the Doc Maynard to the West Seattle route for the Wednesday afternoon commute at the earliest. It might be longer if the weather does not cooperate, due to some outstanding painting and outdoor projects needing to be completed on Sally Fox before she leaves the shipyard. In the process of installing all new railings on the Sally Fox, the crew found other minor issues to fix, which extended the shipyard period.” M/V Sally Fox and Doc Maynard are close to identical twins – both went into service in 2015.
Even though they’ve been prioritized for several weeks, more than 2 in 3 people 75+ in our county have yet to get vaccinated. Both availability and accessibility continue to be challenges for many who are eligible. It’s particularly challenging here in West Seattle, where no general-availability sites are available yet, neither government nor private. City Councilmember Lisa Herbold says the mayor’s office has committed to a site in West Seattle – when vaccine is available, and no one knows how long that’ll be. So what else is in the works? With so many seniors still waiting, we asked Senior Center of West Seattle executive director Amy Lee Derenthal what her organization is working on. First, SC-WS is trying to help members navigate the current challenges, she explained via email:
Our social workers are reporting a number of significant barriers for many seniors to schedule their vaccination, including:
– Many don’t have Internet access
– Many don’t have a computer
– Some have low vision and can’t read the busy web pages
– Some have limited experience signing up for things online, for example through a ‘MyChart’ program
– Many don’t text or know how to receive text alerts
– Many don’t have an email address
– And, many don’t have a family member nearby who can help them navigate these challenges
These barriers are in addition to trying to make sense of the disjointed process and lack of West Seattle locations available to get vaccinated. The Senior Center staff team is working hard to help as many of our 800 members as possible with technology issues, navigating scheduling and figuring out transportation to appointments. So our current main focus is to reach out to our electeds to help us get these seniors prioritized and an easy way for our Social Workers to get people signed up and to their vaccine appointments.
Second, Derenthal told us, she has been working to see if the Senior Center could serve as a mass-vaccination site, “possibly in conjunction with the Junction Association parking lot” right behind it. Public Health Seattle-King County replied to her offer, saying, in part, that “Additional high volume sites are being planned and senior centers will be considered as potential pop-up sites,” so they’ll add the West Seattle center to the list of possibilities. Otherwise, though, the Public Health reply recommended the state’s vaccine-location website … which to date remains completely devoid of West Seattle providers.
Reopenings continue in this first week of Phase 2 for King County. Starting tomorrow, Viscon Cellars (5910 California SW; WSB sponsor) will reopen its tasting room, 1-4 pm Saturdays, limited capacity as per state rules. You can stop in for tastings or glasses or to pick up bottles of Viscon Cellars wine, which also can be ordered online. If you’re interested in wine and chocolate for Valentine’s Day, Viscon Cellars is offering a pack of Intrigue Chocolate Co. medallions with the purchase of 4 bottles of wine.
Yes, Seattle Police do still issue traffic citations. Sylvan Way neighbor Sam, who often shares news of traffic situations, sent the photo, reporting that motorcycle officers have been out on Sylvan twice so far today, pulling over drivers – by Sam’s count, at least six in the past half-hour.
Given a recent rise in domestic violence – not just high-profile incidents like last week’s Highland Park case – here is a timely newsletter sent by Southwest Precinct crime-prevention coordinator Jennifer Danner:
The Southwest Precinct is seeing an uncharacteristic increase in aggravated assault incidents, with the majority of these being domestic violence-related.
Given this, and nature of the last year, the Seattle Police Department would like to offer the following crime prevention newsletter focused on domestic violence- including what is domestic violence, what types of resources are available, and how to report domestic violence to law enforcement.
Always remember- if you or someone you know is experiencing domestic violence or is in danger, call 911 immediately. Please also keep in mind that you can text 911, if you are in a situation where it is unsafe to speak. Call if you can, text if you can’t!
What is Domestic Violence?
Domestic violence is often mistaken as someone losing their temper or mutual fighting in a relationship. Domestic violence is NOT about getting angry or arguing – but it IS about power and control. It is a pattern of harmful behavior by one person intended to control another person within a romantic, intimate or family/household member relationship. People who experience domestic violence can be married or not married; heterosexual, gay or lesbian; living together, separated or dating; or relatives. Men, women and children of all ages, races and classes can be victims. Without intervention, domestic violence can get worse, and could end in death.
Forms of Domestic Violence:
Domestic violence can take many forms, some of which are illegal. It can happen all the time or once in a while. Some forms of domestic violence are: emotional or verbal, controlling/intimidating, physical and sexual.
Reporting Domestic Violence to Law Enforcement:
If you or someone you know is experiencing domestic violence, police intervention can be lifesaving and may be part of your safety plan. The following information may assist you in feeling prepared whether you choose to call 911 or if police are summoned by someone else. You know your situation best; these tips are not meant to apply to every situation, rather offer helpful information to consider.
Tips and Considerations for Talking With Responding Officers:
-The primary duty of officers, when responding to a domestic violence situation, is to enforce the laws allegedly violated and to protect the complaining party.
-Officers may ask you specific questions to better understand the nature of the relationship, your living situation, and the incident that you are reporting.
-If your abusive partner is present, tell them you want to be interviewed separately.
-If you have been injured, show them any injuries on your body. Injuries may take time to show up. If you see a mark after the officers leave, call them back to take pictures. (The pictures may be used in court.)
-If your partner threatened you, tell them how they threatened you and if there was a witness. Try not to minimize your fear; if you are afraid your partner will hurt or kill you, tell the officers.
-If your abusive partner has broken any property, show the officers.
-If you have photos, text messages, emails or other evidence of the abuse you’ve experienced, show the officers.
-Tell the officers about any firearms your partner may own, and/or if your partner has threatened, harassed or injured you (or someone else) previously with a firearm.
-The officers must make a report stating what has occurred. This report can be used in court if your partner is charged with a crime.
-Write down the officers’ names, and the General Offense number of your case.
-Ask the officer if you can speak with the Victim Support Team.
-If they are not available to respond, you may call them to request a follow-up phone call.
-Officers will give you a “Seattle Police Domestic Violence Information and Resource Guide” that offers helpful information about the next steps in the criminal investigation and community resources.
Please visit our website for a full list of local resources.
If You Need Help Now:
-If you’d like to report a violent assault, threat of violence or stalking behavior, please call 9-1-1.
-If you need immediate support and advocacy, you can call The National Domestic Violence Hotline, (24 hours every day), 800-799-7233 or 800-787-3224 (TTY).
-To access confidential advocacy, emergency housing, and civil legal advocacy call the New Beginnings Hotline at 206-522-9472.
-If you’d like to speak to an SPD Victim Support Team advocate, please leave a message on our voicemail line: 206-684-7721.
Please indicate whether it is safe for us to leave a message at your return number.
-If you’re searching for ways to support someone else who may be struggling in their relationship, please refer to the Washington State Coalition Against Domestic Violence Friends and Family Guide
A printable version of the newsletter is here.
Two West Seattle Crime Watch reader reports:
CAR STOLEN: Posted in the WSB Community Forums – a black 2013 Ford C-Max stolen this morning from 9th/Barton, plates BWN5798. Call 911 if you see it.
BICYCLES STOLEN FROM GARAGE: The photos and report are from Paul:
We live in Seaview on 49th and had two black Marin Fairfax SC bikes, sizes M and L, stolen out of our garage between 4 am and 5 am [early Thursday]. The thief also took Ortlieb panniers, and other small things. One of the bikes has a follow-me-tandem attachment on it. We have security video of the thief but for some reason our motion sensor did not trigger the alarm. Our son had left the door open, unfortunately.
The bikes also both have rear racks (not shown in the photo). Police report 2021-902137
Thanks to everyone who sent photos of the double rainbow that appeared about two hours ago – here are two: Keith‘s view from Marine View Drive is above, and Jessie‘s view from Highland Park is below:
Jessie wrote, “The brighter mornings and evenings have been giving me so much hope, and this rainbow was an extra gift!” If you read closely you know we’ve been tracking that too; tonight’s sunset is at 5:17 pm, which is a full hour later than the earliest sunset of winter, back in December.
Now on to the weekend weather outlook: Did you hear the wind early this morning? Tonight and tomorrow could bring it back, according to the forecast – southwest wind, 10 to 20 mph with gusts to 30 mph overnight, 15 to 30 mph with gusts to 40 mph Saturday. Off-and-on chances of rain (although we’re enjoying a big sunbreak right now). Then next week – cold nights/mornings with “a slight chance of rain and snow” mentioned for Monday and Thursday. 42 days left in winter!
Family and friends are remembering Kenneth M. Lowthian, and sharing this remembrance with his community:
Kenneth McDonald Lowthian was born on October 14, 1926 in Seattle. He passed away on January 24, 2021. Ken lived his whole life in West Seattle.
He was a graduate of West Seattle High School, the University of Washington, did graduate work at the U of W College of Education, and participated in a program for Urban Executives at Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
Ken spent his career working for the City of Seattle, and was Superintendent of the Water Department when he retired in 1987.
He served on the Board of Directors at The Kenney, the board of the West Seattle Chamber of Commerce, the Board of Directors of the American Water Works Association, and the Executive Board of the Boy Scouts of America. He was an active member of the Rotary Club of Seattle, a member of Alpha Delta Phi Fraternity, belonged to St. John the Baptist Episcopal Church, and was a retired Naval Reservist.
Scouting played a major role in Ken’s life for over 50 years. He gave credit to his belief in the program by following the Boy Scout law and oath. He received both the Eagle Scout and Silver Beaver awards. He always had wonderful memories of scouting, especially of Camp Parsons.
Ken had a great love for the outdoors. He loved mountain climbing, backpack hiking, and camping. He embraced his Scottish Heritage, loved to travel, play bridge, antiquing and reading.
He was preceded in death by his first wife Dorothy, his second wife Fay, and his brother Ron.
Ken is survived by his four children Vicki Jo (Ron), Burien; Riley (Carol), Duvall; Sharon (Rick), Eugene, OR; and Scott (Diana), Billings, MT. He is also survived by 7 grandchildren and 8 great-grandchildren.
A memorial for Ken will be held at a later date due to COVID concerns. Memorial donations can be made to St. John the Baptist Episcopal Church, 3050 California Ave SW, Seattle 98116.
Please share memories of Ken and condolences with his family at www.emmickfunerals.com/obituary/Kenneth-Lowthian * Arrangements entrusted to Emmick Family Funeral Home of West Seattle
(WSB publishes West Seattle obituaries by request, free of charge. Please email the text, and a photo if available, to email@example.com)
6:07 AM: Welcome to Friday, February 5th, the 319th morning without the West Seattle Bridge.
ROAD WORK & MORE
Delridge project – The SW Thistle closure continues between Delridge and 20th. Here are the key points for this week, pending the preview of next week that we should be receiving later today.
California/Myrtle: The four-week sewer-line repair is done.
Fauntleroy Way work – Another sewer repair, on Fauntleroy between Alaska and Edmunds as previewed here, was supposed to start Thursday but hadn’t as of late in the day.
Tunnel closure – The Highway 99 tunnel is scheduled to close both ways 11 pm tonight through 6 am Saturday.
CHECK TRAFFIC BEFORE YOU GO
Low Bridge: Fourth week for automated enforcement cameras, while restrictions are in effect 5 am-9 pm daily. (Here’s an update on how it’s going.) Here’s a bridge view:
West Marginal Way at Highland Park Way:
Highland Park Way/Holden – with a new left-turn signal for northbound HP Way, turning to westbound Holden:
The 5-way intersection (Spokane/West Marginal/Delridge/Chelan):
The main detour route across the Duwamish River, the 1st Avenue South Bridge (map):
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, both the arterials and neighborhood streets!)
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.