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King County Executive
Dow Constantine


Windy weekend as Puget Sound Energy works to restore power; County crews clear roads, Metro Transit aims for regular routes

Summary

Those who must travel today should be patient and take it slow. Watch for falling ice and tree branches. Stay away from downed power lines. Make safety your first concern.

Story

Two more carbon monoxide cases in Kent

Fire and health officials are reminding residents of the dangers of carbon monoxide poisoning after two incidents in Kent overnight where residents reportedly fell ill while using charcoal grills as an indoor heat source. Emergency responders and medical officials remind everyone that barbecues or generators should never be used indoors.

The reports come as King County residents continue to deal with power outages, clogged storm drains, and debris on roads.

  • As of 5 a.m. Saturday there were approximately 120,000 households without power in King County. Puget Sound Energy plans to dispatch 200 crews through the weekend in King, Pierce and Thurston Counties.
  • Strong winds this morning may have added more debris to area roadways.
  • A flood advisory remains in effect for urban neighborhoods and small streams until this afternoon. King County reminds you to check and clear out storm drains in your neighborhood that may be clogged with snow and debris.

Remember to stay away from any downed power line. As always, make safety your first concern.

Metro Transit

People riding the bus Saturday and Sunday should check the Metro website before traveling. There will be no route cancellations. But because of slush and debris, not all routes will return to regular routing at the same time. Watch for updated information online or through Transit Alerts. People can also call the Customer Information Office at 206-553-3000 from 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday. Due to the volume of calls, there may be longer-than-normal waits on the phone. Metro thanks customers for their patience in dealing with service disruptions and delays caused by this week’s storms. \

King County roads

King County Road Services Division continues to make significant headway with its round-the-clock response to downed trees and slushy conditions on County roadways. Residents can check out road conditions and closures before leaving the house at: www.kingcounty.gov/mycommute. Motorists should be on the lookout for falling debris and use extreme caution when traveling, especially on roads in heavily wooded areas of the county.

Shelter and warming facilities open throughout King County

In response to power outages, warming centers and shelters are available for the general public including a daytime warming center now open in Covington and Red Cross-operated 24-hour facilities in Federal Way and Issaquah. King County Library system facilities are open to the public during as warming shelters. Locations and hours at: http://wiki.kcls.org/wiki2/Emergency_Closures/index.php/Main_Page. A complete updated list is at: www.kingcounty.gov/prepare.

Free snow and ice storm damage inspections in unincorporated areas

Residents in unincorporated King County whose homes were damaged during this week’s snow and ice storms are offered free building inspections from King County’s Department of Development and Environmental Services (DDES). DDES has waived the associated fee to help residents speed up repair to their property. Also, priority service will be given for damaged structures requiring permits for repair work.

The King County Department of Development and Environmental Services also reminds the public that permits may be required before performing certain non-building related repairs, such as hazard tree removal if trees are in environmentally critical areas. Permits can be issued retroactively if a tree poses imminent danger to persons or property.

To request a damage assessment inspection during business hours, please call 206-296-6630. DDES operates Monday - Friday, 7 a.m. until 4 p.m. www.kingcounty.gov/property/permits/about/ddesmap.aspx.

Disposing of storm debris

Residents and businesses are encouraged to recycle construction, demolition and land clearing debris. To see a complete list of recycling options and links to resources, visit https://aqua.kingcounty.gov/solidwaste/wdidw/material.asp.

Small amounts of construction, demolition and land clearing debris are accepted at King County solid waste transfer stations. Customers using dump trucks, flat beds that dump, or roll-off boxes may not dispose of construction, demolition and land clearing debris at King County transfer stations unless it is less than 10 percent of the total volume of the load. (Note: Dump trucks, flat beds and roll-offs with construction, demolition and land clearing debris are accepted at the Vashon transfer station.)

The following restrictions also apply:

  • No hazardous or dangerous waste.
  • No items greater than eight feet long.
  • Dense items that are bigger than 2 feet x 2 feet x 2 feet and weigh more than 200 pounds are not accepted. Examples include big pieces of concrete, large stumps, wood stoves and cast iron bathtubs.
  • The maximum combined vehicle and trailer length limits are: 30 feet at Algona, Cedar Falls, Factoria, Houghton, Renton and Vashon and 40 feet at Bow Lake, Enumclaw and Shoreline.

Prevent carbon monoxide poisoning

Carbon monoxide poisoning can kill. Carbon monoxide gas comes from burning fuels such as gasoline, propane, oil, kerosene, natural gas, coal or wood.

Prevent poisoning from carbon monoxide:

  • Only use a generator outdoors and far from open windows and vents
  • Never use a generator or portable propane heater indoors, in garages or carports
  • Never cook or heat inside on a charcoal or gas grill.

Carbon monoxide poisoning can happen suddenly and without warning. Physical symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning may include splitting headache, nausea and vomiting, and lethargy and fatigue.

If you believe you could be experiencing carbon monoxide poisoning, get fresh air immediately. Call for medical help from a neighbor's home. The Fire Department will tell you when it is safe to re-enter the home.

For a full list of carbon monoxide prevention tips and other safety and disaster information in English and other languages, visit www.kingcounty.gov/health/disaster.

Medical support if your power is out

Some people receive medical support at home that may be disrupted by the power outages. If you need power for medical equipment or need replacement oxygen tanks, call Public Health at 1-877-903-KING (5464) between 9 a.m. and 4 p.m. for assistance



King County Executive
Dow Constantine
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