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Status Update on City Reponse to Severe Weather

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: 11/23/2010 Status Update on City Reponse to Severe Weather Emergency Operations Center Activated at 5:00 a.m. SEATTLE – The City of Seattle Emergency Operations Center activated at 5:00 a.m. this morning. The foll…

City of Seattle Continues Full Response in Treating Snow Routes

City of SeattleFOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: 11/23/2010

City of Seattle Continues Full Response in Treating Snow Routes
Seattle’s Emergency Operations Center Deactivates

SEATTLE – The City of Seattle will continue its full response in treating snow routes through the night but the Emergency Operations Center (EOC) will be deactivated at 7 p.m. today, following two days of operation in response to the first snowstorm of the season. The EOC is scheduled to resume operations at 6 a.m. Wednesday.

Barb Graff, director of the city of Seattle’s Office of Emergency Management, said the EOC stood down after emergency activity declined to the level where it was appropriate for the city to go back to normal departmental operations.

The city’s response to the snowstorm included:

  • SDOT anti-icing / plows
  • Additional shelter opened at Seattle Center Pavilion
  • Warming centers opened at the Family and Adult Service Center (FASC) Day Center and The Seattle Center House
  • Warnings about appropriate heating devices
  • Information on what to do if you experience frozen pipes
  • How to protect your pets from cold weather

Looking ahead to Wednesday:

POLICE

As a result of the traffic-related issues created by the snow and ice, the Seattle Police Department is currently managing snow-related incidents at the precinct level, with periodic reporting through the SPOC. Police staffing and call volume today have been comparable to normal operations and has not been significantly affected by the weather. It is anticipated that SPD will return to normal operations tomorrow if conditions remain the same.

HUMAN SERVICES

Several shelters will be available for people trying to avoid the cold:

  • The co-ed City Hall shelter, located at Fourth and James, 9 p.m. – 6 a.m., capacity, 75 people;
  • The Frye Hotel, for women only, at Third and Yesler, 8 p.m. to 8 a.m., capacity, 25 people.
  • The Seattle Center shelter building will be switched from the Pavilion to the Rainier Room (one of the Northwest rooms), 9 p.m. to 6 a.m., capacity 100 people.

LIBRARIES

  • All locations of The Seattle Public Library, including the downtown Central Library, will be open from noon to 5 p.m., Wednesday, Nov. 24

PARKS

  • Parks and Recreation Community Centers, Discovery Park ELC, Camp Long, and the Amy Yee Tennis Center will operate from 10am – 5pm, Wednesday, 11/24, for drop-in activities.
  • Pools will operate an adjusted schedule, please call the individual pool for programs and times. Madison Pool will be closed tomorrow.
  • Athletic Fields will be closed Wednesday
  • School Age Care Programs are cancelled
  • Athletic programs are cancelled
  • Scheduled Recreation programs and classes are cancelled
  • Swimming Lesson programs are cancelled
  • Langston Hughes Performing Arts Center will be closed
  • Green Lake and Mt Baker Small Craft Centers will be closed
  • Parks will make a decision on golf courses in the morning

PREPAREDNESS

  • The City of Seattle is a partner in the Take Winter By Storm campaign to help residents prepare for winter conditions and emergencies. For information about how you can better prepare, visit www.takewinterbystorm.org

Representatives of the media should contact the following departmental representatives for additional information on the city’s response during and after this snowstorm.

  • Seattle Department of Transportation – For media inquiries regarding transportation issues, please call SDOT’s 24-7 media hotline at (206) 684-3151.
  • Seattle Fire Department – Helen Fitzpatrick, (206) 386-1463, helen.fitzpatrick@seattle.gov
  • Seattle Police Department – Sean Whitcomb, (206) 684-5520, sean.whitcomb@seattle.gov
  • Human Services Department – David Takami, (206) 684-0253, david.takami@seattle.gov
  • Seattle Public Utilities — For media inquiries regarding Seattle Public Utilities operations, please call SPU’s 24-7 media pager, at: (206) 997-5972.
  • Seattle City Light – For media inquiries regarding Seattle City Light, please call City Light’s 24-7 media hotline at (206) 386-4233.

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[View City of Seattle News Release]

City of Seattle Continues Response to Severe Weather

City of SeattleFOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: 11/22/2010

SEATTLE – With the National Weather Service calling for continued subfreezing temperatures and winds gusting up to 40 mph, the city of Seattle continues its response. Following is an update.

  • The Seattle Department of Transportation continues its snow response with 22 plows and three flusher trucks applying anti-icing material on snow routes through 8 p.m. On the night shift SDOT will continue salt brining on snow routes. For more information, please see
    http://www.seattle.gov/transportation/winterweather.htm.

  • The city of Seattle will open the Seattle Center Pavilion near Key Arena tonight through Thursday, Nov. 25, as an additional shelter for homeless people. Doors open at 9 p.m. each evening. These shelters are also open the nights of November 22, 23, 24, and 25:

    • City Hall, 4th Avenue between Cherry and James Sts., is open from 9 p.m. and people should not arrive before 8:30 p.m.
    • Frye Hotel (women only), 3rd Ave. and Yesler Way, opens at 8 p.m.
  • Fire Department has chained up four of its engines in anticipation of worsening road conditions; Engine 17 (University District), Engine 31 (Northgate), Engine 8 (top of Queen Anne Hill), and Engine 2 (bottom of Queen Anne Hill).

  • Seattle Parks and Recreation has closed all athletic fields and has cancelled all community center programs scheduled after 6 p.m., and all pool programs. Parks has also cancelled all evening recreation programs and closed middle-school learning centers and golf courses. Pools and community centers are open for drop-in use until their regularly scheduled closing times and school age care camps are in session. http://parkways.seattle.gov/2010/11/22/parks-and-recreation-cancels-programs-closes-some-facilities/

  • Woodland Park Zoo closed at 3 p.m. today. Regular winter hours are 9:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. daily.

  • The City reminds residents NOT to use barbecues or electric generators indoors, because poisonous carbon monoxide build up and can cause permanent brain damage and even death.

  • Seattle Animal Shelter reminds pet owners to keep pets inside. For more information, please see http://thescoop.seattle.gov/2010/11/17/seattle-animal-shelter-reminds-pet-owners-to-protect-pets-from-cold/.

  • There is no change in garbage pickup at this time.

  • For more information, go to http://www.seattle.gov.

[View City of Seattle News Release]

City of Seattle Responds to Heavy Rains

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: 12/3/2007 City of Seattle Responds to Heavy Rains SEATTLE – City of Seattle crews are responding to neighborhood flooding and landslides caused by heavy rains. The city has activated its Emergency Operations Center (EOC…

Avoid University Bridge for Afternoon Commute

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: 5/2/2007 SEATTLE –Seattle Department of Transportation (SDOT) officials advise Seattle motorists to avoid the University Bridge during today’s afternoon commute, as it is closed because of this morning’s water main b…

Broken Water Main Shuts Down University Bridge; Eastlake Boulevard Closed Just South of Bridge; Some Customers Without Water

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: 5/2/2007 Broken Water Main Shuts Down University Bridge; Eastlake Boulevard Closed Just South of Bridge; Some Customers Without Water SEATTLE – A broken 24-inch water main shut down the University Bridge this morning an…

Water Service Restored in Aftermath of University Bridge Main Break

City of SeattleFOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: 5/2/2007

Water Service Restored in Aftermath of University Bridge Main Break

Bridge Remains Closed Until Further Notice; Update Expected Later This Evening

SEATTLE — Water was restored to areas of Seattle’s Eastlake and Capitol Hill neighborhoods at 5 p.m. today, following a morning break in a 24-inch water main which shut down the University Bridge and disrupted water service to some local business and residences.

The bridge remains closed until further notice, and commuters are advised to find alternate routes. An update on the bridge’s status is expected later this evening.

The cause of the water main break, first reported at 7:36 a.m. on Portage Bay Place which runs under the south end of the bridge, is still under investigation. The bridge was closed at 7:45 this morning as a precaution.

At around 11 a.m., Seattle Public Utilities (SPU) crews had completed the complex job of shutting off the water main, which involved closing a number of valves. Water pressure in the pipe had been slowly reduced to avoid damage to the system. Crews were finishing up the process of restoring limited local service.

Two unoccupied, parked cars, which fell into a large sinkhole caused by the break, have been removed.

Seattle Department of Transportation engineers were on the scene to determine whether there has been any structural damage to the bridge.

Some Metro buses are being rerouted. For more information call 206-553-3000, or go to http://transit.metrokc.gov.

Seattle Public Utilities (SPU) received several hundred customer phone calls who have lost water service or pressure due to the broken water main. Water pressure has been restored to neighborhoods outside the affected project area.

The City’s water is safe. If you have discolored water, as a general precaution we recommend that you wait until the water clears before drinking it.

  • There is no reason to believe that contamination entered the water system.
  • Discolored water results from internal pipe rust getting stirred up with changes in flow and pressure.
  • If the water does not clear, let the water sit for an hour. Then run the water for a few minutes and flush the toilet a couple of times. If the water remains discolored, please contact SPU Customer Service at (206) 684-3000.

Only one leak in the cast iron water main has been reported in the last 15 years.

The section of pipe that broke is 90 years old. There are 147 miles of cast iron pipes in Seattle’s system. This pipe is a feeder line which is part of the backbone of the distribution grid for the City.

The last similar break was on Western Avenue in 1998, near Pike Place Market. A major contributing factor in that break was a footing for a pedestrian walkway that was directly over the pipe. Small but repeated loading caused a crack that ultimately leak to the break.

The cause of the current break remains under investigation. The existing pipe had a 12-foot longitudinal split.

The durability of cast iron pipe is influenced by how well it was installed, the surrounding soil, the presence of vibration and other loads over the top of the pipe. Based on these factors and the current leak rates, SPU assessed that the life expectancy of pipes in its system is 150 to 200 years.

In Seattle, pipes are monitored based on their leak history. Pipes that have frequent leaks are typically replaced.

SPU has benchmarked its system nationally and internationally. The results show that Seattle has one of the most robust water systems in the world. Our leak rate is one-third of the national average, and one-tenth of Australia’s.

In addition to providing a reliable water supply to more than 1.3 million customers in the Seattle metropolitan area, SPU provides essential sewer, drainage, solid waste and engineering services that safeguard public health, maintain the city’s infrastructure and protect, conserve and enhance the region’s environmental resources.

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[View City of Seattle News Release]

Flooding Aftermath

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: 10/20/2003 WINDY,RAINY WEATHER DICTATES CAUTION ON CITY STREETS SEATTLE – Tuesday morning commuters should drive carefully, cautions Seattle Department of Transportation Director Grace Crunican. Even if the rain tapers of…