West Seattle, Washington
Tonight’s pandemic headlines:
NEWEST KING COUNTY NUMBERS: Here are the key points of the daily summary from Seattle-King County Public Health (note: the totals are exactly as posted by King County, but their “changed from yesterday” numbers were wrong for all but the death count, so the “more than” number is from our calculations, comparing to the Sunday update):
*82,303 people have tested positive, 88 more than yesterday’s total
*1,393 people have died, unchanged from Saturday
*5,103 people have been hospitalized, 3 more than yesterday’s total
*907,357 people have been tested, 5,890 more than yesterday’s total
One week ago, those totals were 81.277/1,345/5,082/892,520.
STATEWIDE NUMBERS: See them here.
WORLDWIDE NUMBERS: 114.4 million cases, 2,538,000+ deaths – 514,000+ in the U.S. See the other stats – nation by nation – here.
VACCINATION SITUATION: The city-run Southwest Athletic Complex testing site is now a permanent vaccine clinic too, as announced this morning. However, appointments aren’t open to the public yet, so the only advice seems to be – sign up for all the lists you can get on, from health-care providers to social-service agencies. And if you have transportation and the ability to drop everything and run, there’s the city standby list, too.
NEED FOOD? This week’s nearest Food Lifeline distribution is 2-5 pm Friday (March 5th) at 815 S. 96th.
GOT SOMETHING TO REPORT? firstname.lastname@example.org or 206-293-6302, text/voice – thank you!
The two men arrested after a multiple-business break-in at Westwood Village almost two weeks ago are now charged. The King County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office filed second-degree burglary charges against Rafael S. Meyers and Jerry S. Plute Jr., both 34 years old. Both have been out of custody since the day after their arrests; as we reported that night, a judge declined prosecutors’ request to set bail.
Charging documents say both have substantial criminal records – three felony theft convictions for Meyers and “seven pending cases, all reflective of similar behavior, including three pending Burglary 2 charges.” We covered one of those cases last May, in which Meyers was charged with burglarizing Peel & Press in Morgan Junction. Plute has no felony convictions but court documents list eight criminal misdemeanors including vehicle prowling, possession of stolen property, and drug possession. The charging documents for the Westwood Village break-in detail what we’ve previously reported – the two are alleged to have broken into the empty ex-Fresh Vitamins space, then smashed through walls to get into Wyatt’s Jewelers (WSB sponsor) and Sport Clips. An alarm was triggered, and police got there in time to arrest Meyers quickly; Plute was found on the roof a few hours later, with SWAT on hand because a handgun had been stolen from one of the businesses so police believed he might be armed. The charging documents say that after the arrests, police found the handgun in the vacant store space along with items taken from Wyatt’s, plus handgun and shotgun ammunition and burglary tools. The two are due in court for arraignment March 10th.
7:23 PM: Thanks for the tips. Police are investigating gunfire around 6 pm at 30th and Graham in High Point. No injuries reported, but police confirmed to us at the scene that they found several casings at that intersection. One nearby resident told us by email that she heard several shots and then “two vehicles sped off” – described by her husband as a Mercedes and Mustang that “came back after a few minutes, but no more shots were fired, and they sped off again.” Police had the intersection taped off for a while so they could check for evidence, but have since removed the tape, and the street’s back open.
8:49 PM: Additional information from police – bullets hit a parked car, an occupied car, and a home, where one “round penetrated the walls, narrowly missing an infant and two adults.” No one was hurt; no suspect/vehicle descriptions.
Less than two weeks after kicking off his City Council Position 8 candidacy with a citywide tour including a West Seattle Junction stop, Mike McQuaid has withdrawn. We noticed it on the city elections website this afternoon and confirmed it with a campaign spokesperson. The Seattle Times reported last Friday that McQuaid had been charged with assault and harassment in 2015 after, according to a police report, he threatened and threw a rock at a man working on a landscaping project outside his South Lake Union condo building. The Times report says the charge resulted in a “deferred prosecution” agreement and a dismissal in 2018. McQuaid’s withdrawal leaves West Seattle-residing incumbent Councilmember Teresa Mosqueda alone in the Position 8 race for now; filings won’t be finalized until May.
5:09 PM: Big SFD response for “fire in building” call at 17th/Barton. Updates to come.
5:13 PM: We’re here checking into it. Already downsized.
5:25 PM: Firefighters tell us someone was doing roof work and material started smoldering. Out fast. Last engine just left.
Four days after a listless Bald Eagle was rescued from Don Armeni Boat Ramp, it’s in “stable” condition. That’s according to PAWS spokesperson Laura Follis, who had told us on Friday that vets had diagnosed “severe anemia” and internal bleeding. In our exchange today, Follis added, “Our wildlife veterinarians are re-checking the blood tomorrow and we will have a statement of progress Wednesday morning.” The eagle was taken to the PAWS Wildlife Center after local wildlife advocates teamed with state and local officers to safely capture it for transport to be cared for.
We’ll follow up again on Wednesday.
The Dick’s Drive-Ins food truck returns to West Seattle tomorrow afternoon/evening for its first appearance in The Admiral District. It’s being hosted at Admiral Pub (2306 California SW), whose co-proprietor Alex tells WSB that the pub and two neighbors are partnering to offer seating and fries (the truck only sells burgers and shakes): “People can buy burgers and eat and drink and sit in Arthur’s, Mission Cantina, and Admiral Pub. Mission and Arthur’s will be serving fries in case people want fries with their Dick’s Burgers.” (They’re at 2325 and 2311 California, respectively.) The truck is scheduled to be there 4 pm-7 pm Tuesday.
2:10 PM: The photo is from Sam, who says those crews have just wrapped up their work for the day on Sylvan Way, two hours earlier than planned, so all lanes are now open. Though the originally announced plan – smoothing the pavement where drainage work had been done recently – was for work to continue tomorrow, Sam says the crews told her they will not return until March 18th; we are following up with Seattle Public Utilities.
7:14 PM: SPU confirms the new date for completion, so again, NO work Tuesday.
12:01 PM: The pandemic interrupted Girl Scout Cookie in-person sales last year, and “cookie booths” won’t be back this year. But it is cookie season nonetheless, and here’s a new way to support your local Girl Scouts: Starting today, the online Cookie Connector has launched. It’s one of three ways to get cookies this year, according to the Girl Scouts of Western Washington website:
1. Cookie Connector – Free Delivery
Use our Cookie Connector tool to get FREE, contact-less delivery! Enter your zip code to get cookies delivered to your door by a local Girl Scout and their trusted adult.
2. Ask a Girl Scout – Delivery or Shipping
Support a Girl Scout in your life by buying cookies from them directly. Don’t know any Girl Scouts? Ask your personal or social media network – Girl Scouts are advertising their digital storefronts online.
3. Door Hangers – Delivery or Shipping
Local Girl Scouts are distributing physical order forms. Look for Girl Scout Cookie door hangers in your area and follow the instructions to place your order.
See the cookie varieties here.
P.S. In the past, we’ve featured West Seattle troops who let us know about their cookie booths, so anyone who wants to publicize “digital storefronts” as noted above, let us know!
ADDED: Here’s who we’ve heard from:
Troop 41169, raising money to paint a mural in The Junction – here’s their link
Troop 41169 member Akemi‘s link
Troop 44448 member Ava‘s link
Brownie troop 41534’s link
Troop 41534 member Sylvie‘s link
Each link will tell you a bit about what that troop or Girl Scout plans to do with their earnings.
Because of the pandemic, the West Seattle Water Taxi never switched to its seven-day spring/summer schedule last year. However, Metro says today that this year, it will. The daily-service season will be shorter than past years, starting two weeks later and ending two weeks earlier. It will include late-evening sailings on Friday and Saturdays, but no plans for late-night sports-event runs. The spring/summer schedule also will include more weekday departures – every 35 minutes during peak commute hours, hourly during middays. The new schedule will be in effect April 19th through October 15th; you can see it here. (Distancing-reduced capacity will continue TFN, of course.)
After “pilot periods,” West Seattle now has a permanent city-run vaccination site.
One big catch, though – no public appointments yet – it’s referral-only TFN.
The city announced this morning that the Southwest Athletic Complex parking lot site where it’s been giving COVID-19 tests six days a week is now one of two Community Testing and Vaccination Clinics, along with Rainier Beach.
For starters, the city announcement says, each of the two clinics will administer about 1,000 doses of vaccine weekly. The Seattle Fire Department-run sites could give up to 1,000 doses a day if and when that much vaccine becomes available. But for now, here’s how the city announcement says eligibility will work:
Because supply remains limited, registration for both vaccination clinics will be focused on referral-only registrations, with no public registration option available. Due to limited supply, walk-ins cannot be accommodated. Vaccination rates of people 65 and older in West Seattle and Rainier Beach continue to lag behind the rest of King County. Less than half of people ages 65 or older have been vaccinated in these ZIP codes. The disparities are especially pronounced for Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC) communities.
The City’s Aging & Disability Services division, Department of Neighborhoods, and Office of Immigrant and Refugee Affairs have been partnering with over 50 community-based and faith-based organizations primarily serving BIPOC communities, older adults, and immigrants and refugees to register people for the clinics. During its initial pilot period in February, 83 percent of those who registered for the Rainier Beach clinic identified as BIPOC; 40 percent of those who registered for the West Seattle clinic identified as BIPOC.
The city also announced today that it will open a mass-vaccination site soon at the Lumen Field Event Center, run by Swedish, with about 5,000 doses each week in the beginning, with the ability to scale up to 150,000 a week if and when vaccine is available. The announcement says this clinic will offer public appointments to eligible recipients once it opens around the middle of the month.
6:07 AM: Good morning and welcome to March. Cloudy forecast today, with a chance of rain later.
ROAD WORK: Delridge project – here’s where the work is moving this week. … Sylvan Way is scheduled for lane closures today and tomorrow, for pavement work. … This Friday brings the start of the southbound 1st Avenue South Bridge work.
BRIDGES AND DETOUR ROUTES: 343rd morning without the West Seattle Bridge. Here’s how things are looking on other bridges and routes:
Low Bridge: Eighth week for automated enforcement cameras, while restrictions are in effect 5 am-9 pm daily. 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 1st Avenue South Bridge (map):
For the South Park Bridge (map), here’s the nearest camera:
To check for bridges’ marine-traffic openings, see the @SDOTBridges Twitter feed.
Trouble on the streets/paths/bridges/water? Please let us know – text (but not if you’re driving!) 206-293-6302.