West Seattle, Washington
(Added: Video by @houndoomer on Twitter. Language caution)
ORIGINAL REPORT, 5:44 AM: Another big fire callout in downtown White Center, and Seattle Fire units from West Seattle are being sent to help. 16th SW is being blocked south of Roxbury. We’re on our way to find out more.
5:58 AM: As our first photo shows, the logged address is correct – the old Locker Room Tavern at 9633 16th SW, damaged by fire back in April.
6:10 AM: No word yet if anyone was injured, or if the adjacent businesses are damaged.
This is the third major commercial-building fire in White Center in a little over two months, after the July 5th fire that gutted seven businesses a bit further north on 16th SW (ruled arson) and the fire at the old Atlas Electric building on September 1st (still under investigation).
6:18 AM: The fire’s not out yet – still visible flames and smoke inside the building.
6:34 AM: Public-information officers on scene say this is a 3-alarm fire – they’ve called in the extra help because of the proximity of other businesses. (video added, briefing by PIO Pat Pawlak:)
They’re working to try to keep it from spreading to the adjacent businesses (Bizzarro Italian Café to the south, Huong Xua Deli to the north). No injuries reported.
8:07 AM: After a break to return to HQ to upload video, our crew is back at the fire scene. Some of the responding units have been dismissed. We talked to a Bizzarro Italian Café rep, who says they’re closed Mondays anyway so they’ll be evaluating any effects. Same goes for Full Tilt Ice Cream two doors down – owner Justin Cline tells us there’s some water damage but they’re also usually closed Mondays, so they have time to deal with it. 16th, meantime, is likely to stay closed another two hours or so.
9:04 AM: Lot of cleanup to be done inside Huong Xua (above). Meantime, more than three hours after the fire started, firefighters are still on scene:
12:08 PM: 16th SW has reopened.
12:35 PM: We just checked back with Fire District spokesperson Shauna Sheppard: No cause determined yet.
1:31 PM: Another update from Sheppard: Early indications are that the fire was NOT deliberately set, but the investigation continues.
8:56 PM: We went by tonight; Bizzarro (whose website says they’ll be closed “a few weeks”) and Huong Xua are both boarded up, and the Locker Room is simply rubble. A commenter posted this link to a crowdfunding page for the Locker Room’s proprietors, saying they were about to start rebuilding from the April fire damage.
(Added: Video by Rob Jacobs, just before firefighters arrived)
FIRST REPORT, 8:44 AM: Thanks for the tips. There’s a big fire in White Center – the fire-response log says it’s a 2-alarm commercial fire near 17th SW and SW 98th [map]. Homes are being evacuated west of there. We’re on our way to find out more; avoid that area.
8:55 AM: We’re on scene. This is the long-vacant commercial building between the Gerber auto shop and dental office.
9:10 AM: No reports of injuries so far.
9:21 AM: We talked to firefighters at the scene, Most of this is “knocked down” but there’s one hot spot in debris inside the building that’s still smoldering, so that’s where their attention is now. They confirm no one is hurt. Meantime, checking property records, the exact address for the building is 9811 17th SW.
9:39 AM: The building’s past incarnations include Atlas Electric and the White Center News newspaper; it was listed for sale last year and sold early this year.
10:05 AM: Thanks to the readers who note this building also caught fire two years ago; we covered that on our partner site White Center Now – the 2019 fire was ruled arson, We’ll be checking back at today’s scene in a bit.
11 AM: Just back from there. Still smoldering; streets still blocked. The Gerber auto shop next door is closed while they assess potential damage, as the north end of their building is adjacent to the one that burned.
1:12 PM: That’s the scene on 16th SW south of Roxbury, closed for a block party until 5 pm to raise money for the half-dozen-plus businesses affected by last month’s arson, as mentioned on today’s preview list. Eat, drink, shop, wander – we’ll be updating.
1:42 PM: Just back from a quick tour of the block party – we’ll be adding photos shortly. First, some info: To get in on the raffle/silent auction, go to the breezeway by The Plant Store, midblock – that’s where we found DJ Bugzy Beatdown.
The entertainment schedule for the rest of the afternoon:
Now until 2:10 – selfdoubt
2:30-3:15: Junior on the Prowl
3:30-4:30 DJ DeVonne
5:00 DJ Bugzy Beatdown returns
That’s all midblock. You can also check out B.O.C. Music (3:30-4:30) and Monty Banks (5 pm) at Drunky Two Shoes and then at Southgate Roller Rink, DJ Dan Steely at 5 pm and Kids on Fire at 6 pm.
Another big attraction besides street-fair-style shopping, food.
There’s a seating area in the middle of 16th where Chef Brady Ishiwata Williams, who’s about to open Tomo, is grilling.
At the south end of the block, the Home Skillit is offering street food including Louisiana hot links and Seattle Dogs.
This is all community-organized; we talked to White Center Pride about what people can do to support the businesses that are still working to get back on their feet.
Come down today, wander around, find out about the new locations some have found, they said. (Their booth is on the east side of the block – look for the rainbows.) Some of those new locations are already open – La Tipica Oaxaqueña moved to the southwest corner of 16th/Roxbury – and some hope to be open soon, like John’s Hair and Nails, moving to 10261 16th SW.
6:03 PM: Seattle Police SWAT was serving an arrest warrant in White Center near 20th and 100th when shots were fired. We don’t know yet who fired but the person who was shot was described as a suspect. We are at the scene and will update.
6:06 PM: If you’re in the area, police have set off a ‘flashbang’ before entering the house to see if anyone else is inside. The shooting happened outside.
6:17 PM: The person who was shot
has been taken to the hospital. (Correction: Police later said he was declared dead at the scene.) Officers are now searching the residence. The area’s been taped off, including SW 100th.
6:42 PM: SPD Chief Adrian Diaz is here. Officers are still trying to ensure the house is clear.
6:55 PM: They’ve set off another flashbang, to try to rouse anyone inside. Now a TV helicopter’s in the area.
7:24 PM: We and other media are awaiting a briefing from an SPD public-information officer.
7:55 PM: SPD says the person shot by officers has died. They confirm they had gone to the house to arrest a suspect in a Seattle murder case from earlier this year. Assistant Chief Deanna Nollette said the man who was shot and killed had come out of the house with a gun and it appears he shot first; they are not yet confirming that the man they shot is the one they were there to arrest. We recorded the briefing on video and will upload it shortly. (Added: Here’s the video.)
The distinction that the warrant was for a Seattle case is important because it rules out the recent unsolved White Center/North Highline murders – those were outside the city limits.
MIDNIGHT: SPD Blotter says the man who was shot was 22 years old and was the suspect officers had gone there to arrest.
One year ago, we covered the start of a “Peace Peloton” bicycle ride from Alki to the Northwest African-American Museum. Peace Peloton rides have continued, in support of Black-owned businesses and economic justice, and West Seattle neighbor Katelyn, a PP event organizer, wants to make sure you know about a ride this Saturday (July 31st) from Columbia City to White Center – so in case you haven’t seen it already in the WSB West Seattle Event Calendar, here’s the flyer! Riders will stage at The Patio in Columbia City between 3 and 5, then take off for White Center – a seven-mile ride – at about 5:15 pm, ending at Beer Star (16th/98th). The RSVP link is on this page.
On Monday, on our partner site White Center Now, we reported on the death of 51-year-old Tara Eckman Scott, proprietor of White Center’s Taradise Café. Since she lived in West Seattle and had previously worked at the long-gone, long-beloved Charlestown Café, some WSB readers suggested we report her passing here too. A memorial has been growing outside the Taradise, and tonight her family has announced a public celebration of life in the café parking lot for 4 pm Saturday (July 17th). The announcement also says they’re accepting donations (via Venmo) to keep the café going; as we noted in an earlier story on WCN, it has been closed for more than two weeks after a problem described as a basement flood.
6:07 PM: King County Sheriff’s Deputies are blocking off 16th SW in White Center south of Roxbury after a report of a crash and possible gas leak at 16th/98th. Updates to come.
6:24 PM: Deputies have just told dispatch “the gas is off” but the closure will continue for a little while until Puget Sound Energy arrives. Our crew has just arrived and a fire captain tells us they’re talking with nearby businesses to get them to “air out” as the leaked gas dissipates.
6:39 PM: Added photo of the car that hit the gas line on the north side of Beer Star’s building.
6:50 PM: Deputies just told dispatch that all but the 16th/98th intersection can reopen; cleanup there will take a while longer.
1:37 PM: Thanks for the tips. We’ve confirmed with the King County Sheriff’s Office that the fire which gutted the LumberYard Bar and seven other businesses in downtown White Center early Monday is now being investigated as arson. Though the original tentative determination was that it was likely accidental, KCSO spokesperson Sgt. Tim Meyer tells WSB that they received “new evidence” that led investigators to “reclassify it as arson.” Though the LumberYard has posted on social media that “This most likely is also a hate crime,” Sgt. Meyer would not speculate on a potential motive. Anyone with any information should contact KCSO.
1:50 PM: We went over to the fire scene to see if we could find out more; no one’s around, but we did photograph the signs asking for tips – 800-55-ARSON. That’s reiterated in this statement we’ve just received from the White Center Pride Committee:
The White Center Pride Committee is deeply disturbed and saddened to learn that the fire at The Lumberyard Bar on July 5th has reportedly been reclassified from an electrical fire to arson. The possibility of this being a hate crime targeted at an LGBTQI+ gathering space is also being investigated. Not only was The Lumberyard Bar destroyed, but also 7 other businesses, many of which were minority owned.
We will continue to stand with all of the businesses and individuals that were impacted by this horrible act. Our community is strong and will never back down in the face of adversity. We implore anyone with information to reach out to the King County Sheriff’s Office with any information at 206-263-2070 or 1-800-55-ARSON.
The fire broke out after 1 am on Monday. No injuries were reported. But along with the LumberYard, it devastated neighboring businesses The Boxing Gym, La Tipica Oaxaqueña, John’s Hair and Nails, Rat City Tattoo, Nuggi, and Dottie’s Doublewide.
(Also published on partner site White Center Now)
36+ hours after the devastating fire in the heart of White Center’s business district, we found determined business owners at work this afternoon, cleaning up and carrying on. Above, La Tipica Oaxaqueña was doing business outside their fire-damaged space.
Out front of the LumberYard Bar, where investigators say the fire started in the basement (though as of this afternoon they still hadn’t announced exactly how), we found proprietors Nathan and Michale:
They told us they’re grateful for the overwhelming support they’ve received, including crowdfunding that’s already maxed out at $100,000+. They told us they’re determined to stay in White Center, though they’re looking around for a new space.
Also seen on 16th: A county inspector:
The county was working to determine which spaces were safe to reoccupy and which were not. Those that aren’t will have to get an independent engineer to assess safety once repairs have been made.
HOW YOU CAN HELP: As mentioned above, the LumberYard has maxed out on GoFundMe – but other campaigns have not. Here are links:
*Here’s one for the Boxing Gym
*Here’s one for staff of the affected businesses
*Here’s one for Nuggi, a boba-tea shop that was opening soon
*Here’s one for La Tipica Oaxaqueña
*Here’s one for Dottie’s Doublewide (that page notes it had new owners who were preparing to reopen)
*Here’s one for John’s Hair and Nails
*Here’s one for Rat City Tattoo
Also benefiting the new owners of Dottie’s, Endolyne Joe’s in West Seattle (9261 45th SW) plans to donate 50 percent of its 4-9 pm proceeds this Thursday (July 8th).
Other fundraisers? Please let us know – email@example.com – thank you!
1:54 AM: Big Seattle Fire response for what’s described as a structure fire at 16th and Roxbury. We’re on our way to find out more.
2:07 AM: The fire is being fought by King County units as well as SFD, per radio communication – we’re still waiting for word from our crew regarding the fire’s specific location, as the real-time log has not been updated beyond “16th/Roxbury.”
2:29 AM: The public-information officer on scene tells us it’s in the commercial building on the west side of 16th just south of Roxbury. Still trying to determine which business(es).
2:37 AM: Our photographer has confirmed the building that holds LumberYard Bar and Rat City Tattoo is involved. We’re told a city crew was first on scene of this – Engine 11 (based in Highland Park) was on a medical call a short distance north on 16th when someone ran up and told them a building was on fire.
3:10 AM: The fire’s not entirely out yet – firefighters are still dealing with hotspots and trying to ensure the fire hasn’t spread. No reports of injuries, and it’s too soon for the investigation to begin into the cause.
3:48 AM: Not out yet. Firefighters from multiple departments are still working on it from both sides of the building (16th and 17th). Of note: This is a 2-alarm fire, according to the public-information-officer team.
4:32 AM: The LumberYard’s Instagram feed notes it was closed Sunday night because of a power outage. We don’t know details of that outage, but the City Light map shows 32 customers now out in that area because of the fire, so this may affect businesses beyond the ones damaged by the fire itself. We’ll of course be following up.
ADDED 10:37 AM: We went back this morning – in the view above, you are looking into the building from the alley side. Fire crews are still there:
We talked to Chief Mike Marrs of Fire District 2, which includes North Highline and Burien. The investigator finally got into the building a few hours ago to try to determine the cause.
Other businesses to the north were damaged – including broken glass. Firefighters were expected to be on scene, with 16th remaining closed in that block, until noonish. We will check back again.
11:58 AM: As linked in comments, a crowdfunding campaign has been set up for the LumberYard.
1:45 PM: Fire District 2 public-information Shauna Sheppard says they do NOT believe this was caused by fireworks. So far they’ve traced the origin to the LumberYard’s basement, and they believe it was accidental, though the specific cause remains under investigation.
7:54 PM: Along with the crowdfunding link for the LumberYard, here are three others for those affected: For the Boxing Gym; for staff of the affected businesses; and for Nuggi, a boba-tea shop that was opening soon.
If you’ve gone to a Highline Bears baseball game at Steve Cox Memorial Park in White Center, you know it’s a fun time, more up-close-and-personal (and affordable) than a major-league matchup. The Bears have to play mostly on the road this year because of the pandemic but they’re taking the opportunity in the meantime to get ready for a re-branding: They’re looking for a new name, and accepting suggestions through the Fourth of July. The full story’s on our partner site White Center Now.
4:11 PM: We’re covering this on partner site White Center Now but wanted to let you know here because deputies are blocking 16th SW in the heart of downtown White Center and may extend the closure to Roxbury: At least one person has been shot on 16th SW just south of SW 98th. No arrest reported so far. Updates to come.
4:39 PM: We’re continuing to update the WCN report; the investigation is likely to keep the center of downtown WC blocked for hours to come.
Multiple shell casings have been found and other apparent victims have shown up at Harborview Medical Center.
5:27 PM: Our crew is still at the scene and we expect a briefing soon by KCSO’s spokesperson; we’ll add the update on both sites when that happens. Also, if you’re noticing a helicopter in the area, that’s TV.
5:50 PM: KCSO’s Sgt. Tim Meyer confirms that, as we reported on WCN, four people were shot – and he says two have died. He would not confirm anything else, though, not even whether anyone was in custody. (Added – our video of his briefing:)
This is Pride Month, and the White Center Pride Flag is flying high at Delridge/Roxbury. We were there for tonight’s ceremony – also a flag-swapping; new flags replaced the worn American and Pride flags that had been atop the flagpole just south of Mac’s Triangle Pub.
After the flags were hoisted, decorations closer to ground level went up too.
Shown at the White Center welcome sign in South Delridge are three of the 65 volunteers who answered the call (published here two weeks ago) for volunteers to help with Spring Clean/Refresh the past two weekends. The photo is courtesy of Mark Ufkes, who sent a full report and words of gratitude from the White Center Community Development Association – see it on our partner site White Center Now.
After a pandemic year-plus largely devoid of ceremonial events, they’re starting to rev up again. Today at Steve Cox Memorial Park in White Center, elected officials and transportation directors gathered for a “groundbreaking” photo op as preparation work for the RapidRide H Line expands to construction of its 51 stations. The actual bus-line launch is currently set for fall 2022, reaffirmed Metro general manager Terry White:
Once Route 120 is converted into the H Line, White noted, it’ll mean every-7-minute service during peak hours, both ways between South Lake Union and Burien. The mayor of the latter city was among those participating today:
That’s Burien Mayor Jimmy Matta elbow-bumping King County Councilmember Joe McDermott. Matta said improvements (and Transit Oriented Development planning) are getting under way for Ambaum Boulevard as part of the preparations. Here in West Seattle, the Delridge Way road work that started almost a year ago is on schedule to wrap up this fall, said SDOT director Sam Zimbabwe. The most enthusiastic participant was Aaron Garcia, who’s with the White Center Community Development Association (and is also a Highline Public Schools board member):
— White Center Now (@whitecenternow) May 18, 2021
King County Executive Dow Constantine said the 120 is the sixth-busiest in the entire Metro system (which is now making 85 percent of the daily bus trips made pre-pandemic, he added). The RapidRide concept goes back to his predecessor, Ron Sims, he recalled, and while the system is planned through “the first third of the alphabet … there are plenty of letters to go.” If the H Line indeed launches in September 2022, that’ll be exactly a decade after the launch of West Seattle’s first RapidRide route, the C Line.
In case you haven’t already seen this on partner site White Center Now: Help is needed at a long list of sites on both sides of the city-limit line for this year’s White Center Refresh! The invitation is from Mark Ufkes:
We need “I Love White Center” Volunteers!
White Center “Refresh” Spring Clean 2021
White Center Needs Volunteers for two 2-day sessions :
Friday and Saturday, May 21 and 22
Friday and Saturday, May 28 and 29
Volunteers who want to earn a “I Love White Center” T-shirt must sign up and help complete one of the 15 projects listed below. The free T-shirt supply is limited so sign up soon.
You can sign up by sending a message by e-mail or text to volunteer Project Coordinator Mark Ufkes (email; firstname.lastname@example.org or Text; 206-595-7124). In your sign-up email or text, include your name, your shirt size, and the number of the project you want to volunteer for and show up at the location at the listed day and time. The Project Coordinator will promptly confirm your project assignment.
Once you arrive at the location on the day and time listed below, our crews will have all the gear you will need to complete the project and help you make White Center more beautiful.
We cannot be responsible for your children at these clean-up events. Please bring work gloves and rakes if your project includes yard work. All paint, brushes, rollers, etc. will be provided.
If you are a White Center business owner, we encourage you to clean up the area in front of your business while our volunteers do the larger White Center projects. Consider adding hanging flower baskets in front of your business, clean your front windows and nicely cover over or remove nearby graffiti. Our goal is to help you transform White Center during this two-week period.
White Center Projects include;
Friday, May 21
White Center Welcome Sign (4th SW and SW 108th) Mow and rake area, plant flowers under the sign. 4 volunteers, 2 hours (Friday, May 21; 2 pm)
White Center Welcome Sign (Delridge and 18th SW) Mow and rake area, plant flowers under the sign. 3 volunteers, 2 hour (Friday, May 21, 4 pm)
Back Alley (SW 96th and Delridge SW) Paint over graffiti, match previously used brown and white paint to make the walls look nice. 4 volunteers, 2 hours (Friday, May 21, 3 pm)
Saturday, May 22
Touch Up Murals on both sides of street (107th at 16th SW) Touch-up existing murals on both sides of 107th, paint new murals, mow median strips. 10 volunteers, 3-4 hours (Saturday, May 22; 9 am)
White Center Plaza Building (98th and 15th SW) Paint over graffiti, paint walls to make them look nice. 6 volunteers, 3 hours (Saturday, May 22; 10 am)
White Center Bus Stop (100th and 15th SW) Paint over graffiti. 4 volunteers, 2 hours (Saturday, May 22, 10 am)
Alley between 15th and 16th SW (Behind Proleteriat Pizza); Paint over graffiti. 4 volunteers, 2 hours (Saturday, May 22, 11 am)
Friday, May 28
White Center Community Events Board (100th and 16th SW) Clean the Events Board display, paint the display. 3 volunteers, 2 hours (Friday, May 28, 2 pm)
Lions Mural Building (Roxbury and 17th SW) Touch up painting on murals, paint over graffiti. 5 volunteers, 2 hours (Friday, May 28, 3 pm)
Saturday, May 29
White Center Welcome Sign (Roxbury and 20th SW) Clean sign, plant flowers below sign, and rake and clean the hillside around the sign. 6 people, 2 hours (Saturday, May 29, 9 am)
9800 Block of 16th SW (Northmart and Starbucks area) Paint over graffiti, clean and sweep the area, pick up trash. 10 volunteers, 2 hours (Saturday, May 29, 9 am)
White Center Welcome Sign (10th SW and Roxbury) Mow and weed eat along the sidewalks between 9th to 11th, touch up mural, paint upper guard rail white. Park at the 10th dead end. 10 volunteers, 3 hours, (Saturday, May 29th, 10 am)
Saars Market Evergreen High School Art Class Mural; Touch up the painted areas next to mural, make wall and area look nice. 4 volunteers, 2 hours (Saturday, May 29, 10 am)
100th Block of 16th (south of Autozone); Paint over graffiti on walls, rust red; make the walls look nice. 4 volunteers, 2 hours (Saturday, May 29, 11 am)
White Center Eagles on 15th, paint over graffiti, clean up area. 4 volunteers, 2 hours (Saturday, May 29, 11 am)
White Center Refresh Spring Clean 2021 is organized by the White Center Community Development Association (White Center CDA) and the all-volunteer Eagle Scout White Center Improvement Club.
We need you to eat ice cream, cookie dough, and cotton candy for a great cause!
The past year has brought all sorts of challenges for schools. Our local preschool, the White Center Co-Op Preschool (part of the larger South Seattle College Cooperative Preschools) has seen a huge increase in financial assistance requests, and outdoor classes and remote learning has meant new demands for class materials. But through it all, the school has kept kids learning and playing, and given families invaluable support through community and the parent education program. Now we are offering our newest and most sugary Covid Pack ever to help raise money for this incredible school.
The Sugar Rush Covid Pack includes a pint of ice cream, a pint of vegan chocolate chip edible cookie dough, and a quart of cotton candy. You’ll also get a one of kind piece of art from one of the kids you are supporting. The cost is $30, with half going straight to the school.
Order online now through Thursday, April 29 and pick up starting Friday, April 30th at Full Tilt in White Center
Full Tilt is at 9629 16th SW.
For a year and a half, the King County Conservation Corps has brightened the streets of urban unincorporated areas including White Center, while providing work for people who need it. Today King County Executive Dow Constantine joined KCCC members in a street cleanup to showcase part of his newly announced $600 million pandemic-relief budget addition – a $40 million program to create hundreds more jobs. Full coverage is on our partner site White Center Now.
Two Crime Watch reports today:
BUSINESS BURGLARY, VIA CAR: Also published on our partner site White Center Now:
That security video shows a burglar inside Grocery Plus at 16th/98th on Saturday night around 10:30 pm – a burglar who got in by crashing a car into the doors:
A member of the store owners’ family provided the video and photos, saying the burglar(s) “drove a mid-sized car/suv in a dark forest green color that police found was stolen into the front doors of the shop. Witnesses across the street have live footage they shared with the police, and the store also has a few surveillance videos that show the suspect rummaging through cigarettes and scratch tickets.” One of those clips is above; here’s a screengrab:
A plate from the car was left behind, and deputies told the victims it was stolen. If you have any information, report it to KCSO, and refer to case # C21005703.
HARASSMENT ARREST: A Highland Park case was spotlighted today on SPD Blotter:
An alert officer spotted a suspect from a harassment call involving a gun days later outside the location of the original altercation.
Police were originally called to the 8800 block of 9 Avenue SW on February 13th for a report of a man who had entered the business and threatened a clerk with a firearm. Witnesses said the man left the scene in a green Honda Pilot SUV. Officers searched the area but were unable to find the suspect or the vehicle.
On February 19th an officer on patrol in the same area spotted the suspect’s vehicle parked nearby and even recognized the man based on a tattoo over the suspect’s eye that was visible on surveillance video. The officer quickly moved in and arrested the 30-year-old suspect and recovered a firearm. The suspect is a convicted felon and legally prohibited from possessing a firearm. Police booked the man into King County Jail for investigation of harassment as well as unlawful possession of a firearm.
Though fireworks are illegal in Seattle, Burien, and Tukwila, some are legal for the area between them – unincorporated North Highline, including White Center, just south of West Seattle. Early last year, a ban proposal was launched in the King County Council – and then the pandemic hit, shelving all but emergency actions for months. Now a proposed ban is back in consideration, starting with a discussion in the council’s Committee of the Whole last week. The proposal is sponsored by our area’s County Councilmember Joe McDermott, who also represents unincorporated areas including North Highline and Vashon Island. He cites the July 2019 North Highline fire that killed a 70-year-old man as major motivation. You can read the proposal here; watch the discussion in the meeting video here. The proposal is expected to return to the committee for action, and then one month’s notice is required before it would go to a vote in the full County Council.
The photo and report are from Mark Ufkes:
The Scout Motto is “Do a good turn daily.”
One of the $5,000 White Center Welcome signs was so damaged by graffiti that it was unreadable and parts of another sign were stolen. Eagle Scouts Josh Paley (age 23) and Mark Ufkes (age 65), (Once an Eagle Scout, always an Eagle Scout!) spent the day replacing the damaged sign at 18th SW and Delridge Way, and cleaned and re-installed the White Center Rainbow and Welcome in 10 languages portions of the sign at 4th Ave SW and SW 108th that had been stolen.
They did this as their “good turn” and to remind everyone that White Center is spectacular, and to celebrate that just this month, we had 12 local girls who became the first group of female Eagle Scouts in American history. Many adult Scout leaders, including Ufkes, pushed Scouting for years to allow equal access to its exceptional programs regardless of sexual orientation or gender.
After years of advocating by hundreds of adult Eagle Scouts and parents, in 2018, girls and kids of any sexual orientation were included in Scouting programs and began the minimum two-year process required to complete the rather challenging requirements to become an Eagle Scout.
You can read about those requirements here.
First the Seattle City Council did it, then the Burien City Council did it, and now the King County Council is considering also requiring “hazard pay” for grocery workers. The new proposal (read it here) would cover unincorporated King County; that would include White Center and the rest of unincorporated North Highline immediately south of West Seattle. The proposal would mandate $4/hour hazard pay – same as Seattle but $1 less than Burien – at “larger” grocery stores. Here’s the full announcement, which quotes a worker from Roxbury Safeway, Jeanette Randall, as saying, “Every day when I go to work I put myself and my family at risk, King County passing a hazard pay ordinance would make sure workers like me receive the same compensation for the essential work that I do as workers in neighboring Burien and Seattle.” The proposal has just been introduced; we’ll be checking on when it’s likely to come up for a vote.
7:28 AM: No indication yet what caused this. Note that the outage zone includes parts of Roxbury and 16th SW, both arterials, with signals, so if you travel through an intersection that’s affected, it’s a four-way stop. Also remember that SCL’s restoration estimates are just guesses. (Added: The latest guess has already changed dramatically, from 2 pm to 8:54 am.)
7:51 AM: We have one report that power’s back. The SCL map lags so we won’t get the full picture for a bit.
8:01 AM: Map shows one pocket remains, almost 400 customers in the Greenbridge area. We’ll update later when we find out the cause. (So far, SCL has attributed it to an “underground issue.”)
8:15 AM: Checking the archives – this outage footprint, and cause, is similar to this December outage. We’re following up on that.
6 PM: City Light spokesperson Julie Moore responded: “Today’s outage was due to a switch failure that caused a substation feeder breaker to lock out. It was the same breaker as the Dec. 12 incident, so that’s why we saw a similar footprint. However, it was a different switch in a different location on the feeder that failed this time.”