TRAFFIC, TRANSIT, WEATHER: Wednesday notes; low bridge reopens after hour-plus closure for ‘electrical issue’

8:30 AM: The low bridge has a mechanical problem and buses (etc) are being rerouted.

8:40 AM: One Metro alert says mechanical issue, another says “collision.” Police are being sent for traffic control.

9:08 AM: Per emergency radio – a dispatcher sending more SPD just said SDOT told them “another 15 minutes or so.”

9:23 AM: SDOT has sent an advisory blaming an “electrical issue” and saying there’s now no ETA for a fix.

9:31 AM: Reopened, per camera and commenter.

10:03 AM: SDOT has sent us an update that while the low bridge is open now to let traffic through, “we will be possibly closing the gates again to do some testing.”

11:04 AM: Update from SDOT – “we have rectified the current issue and completed test openings. The bridge is currently fully operational.”

1 PM: Another update from SDOT – “While the bridge is now operational, we are still evaluating the issue to provide a more complete picture of what happened to cause the problem. It may take a while to fully evaluate and review the information. We will let you know when that work is complete.”


6 AM: Good morning and welcome to Wednesday, May 11th.


The National Weather Service predicts another partly sunny day, high around 60.


Metro is on its regular weekday schedule, but watch @kcmetroalerts (new account) for word of reroutes/trip cancellations.

Check the West Seattle Water Taxi status here.

Ferries: WSF continues using the two-boat schedule for Fauntleroy-Vashon-Southworth. Check here for alerts/updates.


Mariners are again home vs. Philadelphia at 12:40 pm.


779th morning without the West Seattle Bridge.

Low Bridge: Automated enforcement cameras remain in use; restrictions are in effect 5 am-9 pm daily – except weekends; the bridge is open to all until 8 am Saturday and Sunday mornings. (Access applications are available here for some categories of drivers.)

1st Avenue South Bridge:

South Park Bridge:

West Marginal Way at Highland Park Way:

Highland Park Way/Holden:

The 5-way intersection (Spokane/West Marginal/Delridge/Chelan):

Are movable city bridges opening for vessels? Check the @SDOTBridges Twitter feed; 1st Ave. S. Bridge openings are tweeted by @wsdot_traffic.

All city traffic cams can be seen here; West Seattle and vicinity-relevant cameras are also on this WSB page

Trouble on the roads/paths/water? Text or call us (when you can do so safely) – 206-293-6302.

59 Replies to "TRAFFIC, TRANSIT, WEATHER: Wednesday notes; low bridge reopens after hour-plus closure for 'electrical issue'"

  • Bob May 11, 2022 (8:07 am)

    Does anyone know what is up with the low bridge? On c line. And we have not moved for 20 minutes?

  • Conrad May 11, 2022 (8:16 am)

    Lower west Seattle bridge appears to be malfunctioning

  • Sukie May 11, 2022 (8:19 am)

    I am on the C by the bridge and the driver informed us that they are getting rerouted due to an issue with the low bridge. Ugh!

  • Greg May 11, 2022 (8:22 am)

    Lower bridge has been closed for 30+ minutes… Metro is rerouting, bikes are backed up

  • MrsShaw May 11, 2022 (8:23 am)

    HEADS UP – My Metro service alert says buses are rerouted off Spokane St. Bridge via 1st. Ave South Bridge. . 

  • BB May 11, 2022 (8:25 am)

    My sons C bus was diverted from low bridge and they are going over First Ave bridge. Do you know what is going on?

  • 120 commuter May 11, 2022 (8:31 am)

    Some sort of backup on the low bridge – the 120 is being rerouted to W Marginal. 

  • James May 11, 2022 (8:33 am)

    Lower bridge might be broken.  All transit is rerouting

  • David Christensen May 11, 2022 (8:35 am)

    Alert there is some Low bridge drama this AM

  • pagefive May 11, 2022 (8:37 am)

    Received transit alert that buses heading toward West Seattle are being rerouted off the lower level Spokane Street bridge due to a collision. My kids are on the #50 headed to school and they say it hasn’t moved in 25 minutes.

    • WSB May 11, 2022 (8:46 am)

      One alert says collision, another said mechanical issue. Trying to find out what actually is going on.

  • K May 11, 2022 (8:37 am)

    I love sitting on the bus for an hour and still not being out of West Seattle.  

  • trickycoolj May 11, 2022 (8:53 am)

    Don’t bother trying to get to Harbor Island impossible to access from the east also. 

  • Tim May 11, 2022 (9:01 am)

    Time to fire off another email to the city council. Not having one bridge I’ve gotten used to. But now both? And this isn’t an anomaly, it’s a pattern of maintenance negligence and not having solid alternative options. My bus driver on the C was lost because they didn’t receive reroute instructions and had no idea where to go. Angry semis blasting their horns. What a cluster. 2 hours to travel less than 10 miles on public transportation is not okay.

  • sb May 11, 2022 (9:12 am)

    I asked the mechanical team ‘whats wrong’ and ‘how long’ There is an issue with a hydrolic pump. Unfortunately he shrugged his shoulders to how long it would be. No eta at thispoint. The team there seemed to be diligently working on it.

    • WSB May 11, 2022 (9:15 am)

      Thanks; as noted above, SDOT’s maintenance response (aka “Charles Street”) told SPD dispatch it wouldn’t be much longer – they needed to know as they continue sending police that way for reroute assistance.

  • Lucy May 11, 2022 (9:16 am)

    Water Taxi FTW!

    • Blbl May 11, 2022 (1:56 pm)

      My kid took the water taxi only to be stranded downtown when there were no buses to get them the rest of the way to school. 

  • V May 11, 2022 (9:26 am)

    Thanks for the update. Left at about 8:30 on a C and still on Marginal at 9:22. I’ll be lucky if I get into work before 10 this morning. Way to go Seattle for the most efficient and fastest public transit system in the US. Definitely makes the case for why you don’t need a car round here…

    • NYStateofMind May 11, 2022 (9:54 am)

      Without a doubt, you absolutely need a car around here. This is not New York as much as we like to think it is. 

      • V May 11, 2022 (11:05 pm)

        Yes learning the hard way but doing pretty good for year 3 and still no car. Can’t complain anymore about the eastern seaboard and their transit delays and woes. I almost miss it. 

  • Jim May 11, 2022 (9:26 am)

    Why is the lower bridge opening during rush hour in the first place? Barge traffic should be restricted from passage under the bridge during peak hours. Ridiculous.

    • WGA May 11, 2022 (10:42 am)

      This question has come up before.The US Coast Guard determines the opening and closing of bridges for marine traffic. It is my understanding that their policy is to prioritize marine traffic over vehicles.

      • Also k May 11, 2022 (1:33 pm)

        To add to that, much of the traffic needs a high tide to get through, so they can’t completely choose what time they do so (this is why you’ll have bridge openings during commute times for days in a row, and then not for days on a row).  

        • Historic Seattle May 11, 2022 (2:48 pm)

          They don’t need the tide (these aren’t deep draft vessels), they just like the tide to save on fuel.

          • CarDriver May 11, 2022 (4:26 pm)

            Historic Seattle. Tide is when water goes up or down. No connection at all to fuel use. 

  • sb May 11, 2022 (9:32 am)

    9:30 bridge opened.

    • WSB May 11, 2022 (9:36 am)

      Thanks, camera verifies so we’ve updated above. That 15-min estimate at 9:08 am wasn’t so far off after all.

  • Alki resident May 11, 2022 (9:33 am)

    Hey, why not🤦‍♀️

  • Alec May 11, 2022 (9:48 am)

    About 50 minutes from Youngstown to Highland Parkway light on W Marginal. Ridiculous. Why can’t they have parts and people on standby for lower bridge when it’s so critical now? West Seattle has suffered enough. 

    • bill May 11, 2022 (12:39 pm)

      Yep, such incompetence not have a complete spare bridge in storage!

  • Gale Hurley May 11, 2022 (9:54 am)

    Bridge , per camera, should be open but after waiting for a CLine or #21 for 30 minutes, this CLine is headed to Highline Drive to go around low bridge. I would have taken the Water Taci, had I know about this. Took me 1 hour and o go 12 miles to work the other day with a reverse commute after 9 am. Thanks Metro and SDOT – esp SDOT for making a “no turn in red, Eastbound on Highland Druve so those of us trying to get to 509 South can spend 30-50 minutes going down the high. 

  • Mj May 11, 2022 (10:01 am)

    Thank you for the update 

  • WSB May 11, 2022 (10:06 am)

    And now (again, as noted above) SDOT warns they may drop the gate again for more testing, so further delays are possible. I also have a request in regarding exactly what went wrong and if it’s related to what’s already been scheduled for repair/maintenance work.

  • Dano May 11, 2022 (10:14 am)

    Busses still being diverted around to 1st ave

  • here we goagain May 11, 2022 (10:15 am)

    Thank god we have been putting lots of money into bike lanes, road diets and cameras. So helpful during times like these. Marginal is wonderful these days.

    • bill May 11, 2022 (12:40 pm)

      Not enough money into bike lanes.

      • Blbl May 11, 2022 (2:00 pm)

        Agree. All bike lanes should be wider to allow for cars.

  • Mari May 11, 2022 (10:17 am)

    The 120 from Burien to Seattle was also inexplicably backed up. I reached out to Metro was told it was a bridge issue, but then their blog says “routes to Seattle aren’t affected”???? I’m confused on what it is.

  • Lisa May 11, 2022 (10:26 am)

    West Marginal Way is a transit nightmare. It took me thirty minutes to get to the 1st avenue bridge.

  • Jk May 11, 2022 (10:31 am)

    On the 1006 c bus and we are being diverted.  Feels like they should tell about this BEFORE you get on the bus would totally have taken the water taxi.  Barely moving on marginal 

  • Gale Hurley May 11, 2022 (10:34 am)

    Update: 1.5 hours to get C-Line at Avalon and Yancy (30 minutes) and 1 hour to get from this last West Seattle bus stop to I-5/E. Marginal Freeway ramp. No SPD seen helping direct traffic anywhere in W. Marginal Way. Bus driver not wearing a mask. Most of passengers are. 

  • Gale Hurley May 11, 2022 (10:34 am)

    Update: 1.5 hours to get C-Line at Avalon and Yancy (30 minutes) and 1 hour to get from this last West Seattle bus stop to I-5/E. Marginal Freeway ramp. No SPD seen helping direct traffic anywhere in W. Marginal Way. Bus driver not wearing a mask. Most of passengers are. 

    • Gale Hurley May 11, 2022 (11:13 am)

      Sorry for the repeats- got message “didn’t go”Update: 2 hours, 15 min from Avalon/Yancy to 3rd and Virginia. 

  • Kat May 11, 2022 (10:35 am)

    Update: 1.5 hours to get C-Line at Avalon and Yancy (30 minutes) and 1 hour to get from this last West Seattle bus stop to I-5/E. Marginal Freeway ramp. No SPD seen helping direct traffic anywhere in W. Marginal Way. Bus driver not wearing a mask. Most of passengers are. 

  • AN May 11, 2022 (10:37 am)

    Looks like trouble at the top of Highland Park

  • Mj May 11, 2022 (11:45 am)

    Low level bridge is open, EB is clear WB is queued back to SR 5

  • Jeepney May 11, 2022 (11:48 am)

    Traffic headed to the terminal backed up to I-5

    • Odd son May 11, 2022 (5:09 pm)

      This happened when the high bridge and low bridge was open in the past.

  • Fan of Kelp Forests May 11, 2022 (12:21 pm)

    A gondola would be nice on a day like today.  A quick, quiet, relaxing ride over the water with a view of the mountains.  No traffic stress. No bridge issues.  Not even bridge construction that pours concrete onto traffic below.  Just a scenic, inspiring way to access downtown.

    • bill May 11, 2022 (12:42 pm)

      With today’s breeze it wouldn’t be relaxing for some people and you’d better hope the cars are fully stocked with airsickness bags.

      • CarDriver May 11, 2022 (1:47 pm)

        If someone’s stomach is that tender they’ll get sick in a rail car, or bus, or water taxi

      • Free the trees May 11, 2022 (5:43 pm)

        Agree @Fan of Kelp Forests!

        Suggesting a modern urban gondola would be blowing around in the wind is a misnomer. It would be more sturdy in the wind than I think some imagine.

        I love watching gulls and crows riding and playing in the wind. What a view that would be from SkyLink!

    • Anne May 11, 2022 (1:09 pm)


    • Joe Z May 11, 2022 (4:17 pm)

      Nobody goes for a “nice relaxing ride” at 8 AM on a Wednesday. People were trying to get to work on public transportation and they were an hour late because the buses get stuck in traffic whenever there is a disruption, which cascades through the entire city. There were probably people in north Seattle trying to catch route 5 who were waiting for an hour while their bus sat on West Marginal. It used to happen all the time when the high bridge was open as well, I remember being late to work sitting on the C-line on Avalon for a half an hour waiting to merge onto the high bridge ramp because there was an accident on I-5. This is why we need a fast, reliable, high capacity light rail network. The buses fail when there is a traffic disruption and there’s no appetite for making the buses 100% separated from cars. Also, the buses are getting overcrowded again, so many people likely had to stand on the bus for the entire hour+ delay. 

      • Wseattleite May 11, 2022 (5:15 pm)

        If you live in the junction. 

    • Aria May 11, 2022 (9:45 pm)

      please for the love of holy stop with the gondola. it’s  not happening. it’s too much money and chaos and tourist trap. good lord. it’s a clown gimmick started by fools who got drunk and suggested something dumb, made ONE blog post, and a bunch of fools jumped onto it as a delusion.there is no gondola. there will never be, or SHOULD NEVER BE, a gondola.

  • Odd son May 11, 2022 (5:10 pm)

    Doesn’t anyone remember the bridge getting stuck open for a day a few months ago?

  • Duh May 11, 2022 (7:05 pm)

    On the good side, one way to slow you guys down in the “west marginal 500” daily road race.  The gondola is dead…. give it a rest 

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