5:15pm: The snow has been mixing with rain on and off around Ballard for the past hour, but dropping temperatures mean the accumulation will be significant this evening so long as the predictions hold up.
A look at the Ballard traffic cams show that the rush home has mostly subsided. However, bus services are very scaled back, and Metro just announced that Route 17 (serving Sunset Hill) is canceled for the evening.
3:20pm: Thank your mail carrier today! Here’s a brave postal worker making his way through Ballard despite the snow.
“Neither snow nor rain nor heat nor gloom of night (nor giant dogs) stays these couriers from the swift completion of their appointed rounds,” My Ballard Group member Karen Vogel writes.
3:00pm: Governor Jay Inslee has declared a state of emergency for Washington state, which means the state military has activated the state emergency operations center. The state military will help local officials deal with impact of the snow.
As part of the emergency declaration, Inslee has prioritized the delivery of milk and road salt, saying both are essential items and in demand during the storm. He’s said that truck drivers who carry bulk milk or road salt are exempt from state regulations that govern how many hours they may drive.
With steady snowfall around the city and people trying to get home, traffic doesn’t seem to be letting up. We’ve heard reports in the My Ballard Group that 3rd Ave NW is also backed up, as is the Ballard Bridge and 15th Ave NW. However, it doesn’t look like the snow is sticking to the road surface — yet. Here’s a link to SDOT’s map of cleared roads and obstacles.
Meanwhile, here’s a shot from Ballard Corners Park, where it’s looking a bit chilly for a sit-down…
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1:40pm: Traffic is building around Ballard, as people head home early from work and school before the heaviest falls.
Here’s a look at the Ballard Bridge:
12:40pm: Now the real fun begins: the beginning of the storm is upon us, with earnest snowfall all over Ballard. Here are the live traffic cameras.
Here’s a shot from My Ballard Group member Gretchen, taken at Shilshole:
8am: A few events around Ballard this weekend have been cancelled or postponed for the snowstorm.
Ballard Hullabaloo, originally scheduled for Feb. 8 and 9, is postponed — the organizers are looking to reschedule for another weekend in the near future.
The Marine Corps Jazz Concert at Ballard High School (scheduled for Feb. 8) is cancelled and will likely not be rescheduled (we’ll let you know if that changes).
The Ballard High School Film Festival, scheduled for for Feb. 9, has been postponed until March 2.
7:45am: As the first snowflakes are already falling early this morning, Seattle is getting ready for one of the largest snowstorms in decades.
With the heaviest snow expected this afternoon, Seattle schools are on an early release — classes will be let out 75 minutes early, and all after-school activities are cancelled. All school buses will be on regular routes.
The National Weather Service in Seattle is urging everyone to get home before the snow hits its heaviest, by 3pm. The NWS says to expect accumulations of about two inches per hour.
Wanna good reason to leave work and start your weekend early? How about snow as an excuse! The heaviest snowfall is expected to reach the Seattle Metro after 3 PM this afternoon and continue through the evening rush. If you do have to be out…BE CAREFUL! #WAwx pic.twitter.com/jShTnE1Cx9
— NWS Seattle (@NWSSeattle) February 8, 2019
In a mad rush to stock up before the storm, Ballard grocery stores were nearly picked clean yesterday afternoon and evening. Members in the My Ballard Group said it was mayhem at Trader Joe’s, Ballard Market, and Fred Meyer, with scenes of empty shelves and lines that wove down the aisles. Eggs, bread, meat and milk were in short supply at all three stores by the later evening hours.
Misha writes that by 5pm, eggs were gone and they were down to the last of the milk and butter. Amber was at Fred Meyer on 85th (photo below), saying it was heavily picked over, they were out shopping carts, and the lines were long.
Katie sent us the below photo of the Ballard Fred Meyer.
And, the shopping continues: by 7:30am on Friday, Ballard Market was already slammed, as employee Nancy tells My Ballard.
We’ll be updating this post throughout the day, so if you want to share your stories of the snow, email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.