KIRO Newsradio Headlines: Seattle counts down to opening of West Seattle Bridge

Aug 26, 2022, 3:45 PM | Updated: Aug 29, 2022, 5:06 am

The West Seattle Bridge is just three weeks away from its expected opening after it was shut down in 2020 from significant fractures in its material.

One of the biggest additions to the bridge — new crack-tracking sensors.

Seattle Department of Transportation downtown mobility director Heather Marx told KIRO 7 TV that the sensors monitor even the tiniest of cracks. She expressed optimism looking forward.

“The fact that the bridge is behaving the way we expect it to now is also a pretty good indication that we’re going to get the results we expect later,” Marx said.

Officials said the sensors can detect any shifts in the structure that could lead to what closed the bridge two years ago.

Inslee: Snake River Dams will stay until impact from removal is reduced

Gov. Inslee has announced opposition to removing the Snake River Dams until the energy, transportation and agricultural benefits the dams provide are replaced.

Last week, a federal report said that salmon and steelhead from the Snake and Columbia rivers must be protected under the Endangered Species Act.

Breaching the dams, Inslee said, will help endangered salmon in southern portions of the state.

Eastern Washington Representative Dan Newhouse is fighting the dams removal and says “there is no reasonable replacement” for the hydropower and transportation the Lower Snake River Dams provide.

Puyallup River Bridges are now open

With the project widen I-5 now complete, the new Puyallup River Bridges are now open.

HOV lanes are being extended this weekend from Fife up to Highway 16, marking the end of a longtime effort to expand the highway.

The lanes are set to be completely opened by Sunday morning.

WSDOT has been working on this section of I-5 through Tacoma for 22 years.

Idaho woman takes $1,200 taxi-ride to Oregon for abortion

More people are travelling across state lines to seek abortion services with Oregon’s Planned Parenthood centers seeing patients from Idaho, Texas, Mississippi, Louisiana and even Florida.

Following the Supreme Court’s decision in late June to overturn Roe v. Wade, Idaho had a so-called “trigger ban” in place — meaning it would immediately restrict the practice after the ruling.

The state’s abortion ban is near-total with providers liable to face felony charges if they perform or attempt to perform an abortion.

Anne Udall, president and CEO of Planned Parenthood Columbia Willamette, told the Associated Press a woman had taken a $1,200 taxi ride from Boise, Idaho, to Bend, where one clinic serves all of eastern Oregon.

Idaho’s ban is being challenged in court.

Shortly after the decision, all three West Coast governors pledged to welcome and help patients from states where abortion has been banned or greatly restricted.

Sam Campbell, KIRO breaking news reporter, contributed to this report.

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KIRO Newsradio Headlines: Seattle counts down to opening of West Seattle Bridge