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King County Executive News

King County Executive News
execdow
Jan. 17, 2012

EVENING UPDATE: King County government adverse weather operations

Residents urged to use caution if traveling, be patient, dress warmly and focus on personal safety

Due to snow conditions and slick roads, residents are urged to use caution while commuting to work and to telecommute if possible. Individuals should take their time and be patient, and emphasize safety over getting to a destination quickly.

King County Operations: Some King County agencies are reporting altered operations tonight, Tuesday, and tomorrow, Wednesday. Updated closures are posted online in real time at www.kingcounty.gov. These agencies include:

  • District Court evening operations: that would normally start at 5:30 p.m. are cancelled for tonight in Carnation, Duvall and Redmond.
  • Marymoor Park: Practices and matches scheduled for the synthetic soccer fields at Marymoor Park are canceled for tonight (Jan. 17) and tomorrow (Jan. 18). Please call 206-205-3661 Events booked at the Clise Mansion for Jan. 17-18 have also been rescheduled or canceled.
  • Weyerhaeuser-King County Aquatic Center: Programs are canceled at KCAC until at least 11:30 a.m. on Jan. 18 Please call 206-296-4444 for current operation information.
  • Garbage collection service disruptions: Disruptions in garbage collection are being reported in several areas of King County. Customers who are missed on their regular collection day this week are asked to secure their garbage and put it out for collection on their regular day next week. There are several companies providing garbage-collection services throughout King County, and residents are urged to contact their individual hauler for information: http://your.kingcounty.gov/solidwaste/garbage-recycling/garbage.asp
  • Public Health Centers: Public Health Centers may have limited services. If you plan to get services at a Public Health Center or other Public Health location, please call before you leave home to find out if the service is available. Contact information is available on the Public Health website at www.kingcounty.gov/health.
  • Metro Transit: King County Metro Transit will operate with buses on snow routes Wednesday, and some bus routes are scheduled to be cancelled in the morning. As travel conditions deteriorate, please consider limiting travel if at all possible. Check Metro's snow page (www.kingcounty.gov/metro/snow) for the current status of bus service.
  • Online Services Available: King County residents may be able to obtain some services online, such as pet licensing, car tabs, marriage licenses by mail, property tax payments, business licensing and more.

Use Caution When Clearing Snow

Snow mixed with rain falling on the deep, heavy snow already around the region can create a potential hazard by growing snow loads on rooftops, which could lead to structural collapse or sliding snow.

Most new structures are built to withstand typical snow load events in King County. However buildings and structures with flat roofs are at a greater risk of collapse. With wet snow or ice the risk is higher as the loads are much heavier than regular snow.

The King County Department of Development and Environmental Services (DDES) urges the following precautions:

  • If a roof (whether flat or sloped) is in eminent danger of collapse, stay away from the structure and call 9-1-1 for emergency help.
  • Removing snow from your roof with a shovel can trigger unexpected snow slides causing crushing/suffocating injuries or death. Keep people and animals away from potential slide zones. It is strongly recommend not to access your roof to clear snow. The use of ladders when removing snow from your roof can pose additional hazards. Climbing on a roof increases the load already stressed by the heavy snow load. Consider hiring experts who have experience and specialized equipment for safely clearing snow or ice.
  • Clear any accumulation of snow around side wall vents for appliances.

If you are in unincorporated King County, the Department of Development and Environmental Services (DDES) can conduct safety assessments and damage inspections of your house. Contact DDES at 206-296-6630 Monday - Friday 7:30 a.m. - 4:00 p.m. to schedule an inspection. For inspections on buildings inside city limits, you must contact the city directly.

Prevent Carbon Monoxide Poisoning

Carbon monoxide poisoning can kill you. 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 reenter 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.

Warming Facilities Throughout King County

As warming centers open in King County, including cities within the county, the list will be updated online at www.kingcounty.gov/prepare.