Having trouble reading this email? View it in your web browser.

King County Councilmember Pete von Reichbauer
transparent pixel
transparent pixel

Dear Friends:

Today’s update includes information on new rules for Long-Term Care Facilities, Five Mile Lake and Lake Geneva parks temporary closure, upcoming I-5 closure between Federal Way and Fife, COVID-19 updates, and more.

Washington Trivia

What is the oldest operating airfield in the Pacific Northwest?

(Answer is at the bottom).

New Rules for Long-Term Care Facilities

On August 6th, Governor Jay Inslee announced new rules for long-term care facilities, allowing phased reopening for visitations based on the facilities’ outbreak preparedness. Modeled after the Safe Start plan, the restart plan includes a number of public health metrics that must be met in order for facilities to move through the process. Read more about it here.

King County Parks closes Five Mile Lake and Lake Geneva Parks

King County Parks has closed Five Mile Lake and Lake Geneva Parks near Federal Way due to consistent overcrowding, posing a threat to public health. To help reduce the spread of COVID-19, the parks closed on Friday, August 7th and will remain closed until further notice. Since the re-opening of these parks in May, Parks employees have regularly observed an increase in visitors as well as large gatherings taking place, which is not consistent with public health guidelines established as part of the state’s Safe Start Plan. Read more about the closures here.

On April 16th, 1971 two real estate agents (Bob McDonald and Jim Youngren) put this sign up on Pacific Hwy and 167th near the airport.

I-5 to close overnight in Federal Way Aug. 28-30

A five-mile stretch along Interstate 5 between State Route 18 in Federal Way and 54th Avenue East in Fife will be closed in both directions by the state Department of Transportation for installation of ten 220-foot-long girders for the new 70th Avenue East Bridge as part of the State Route 167 Completion Project.

Friday, August 28 to Saturday August 29
• I-5 NB and SB lane closures begin Friday at 8 p.m.
• All lanes closed on I-5 at 11p.m. between 54th Avenue East in Fife and SR 18 in Federal Way
• Lanes begin reopening Saturday at 8 a.m.
• All lanes reopen by noon Saturday

Saturday August 29 to Sunday August 30
• I-5 NB and SB lane closures begin Saturday at 8 p.m.
• All lanes closed on I-5 at 11 p.m. between 54th Ave East in Fife and SR 18 in Federal Way
• Lanes begin reopening Sunday at 8 a.m.
• All lanes reopen by noon Sunday

Federal Way COVID-19 Small Business Assistance Grant Program

Local small businesses may now begin applying online for the second round of the Federal Way COVID-19 Small Business Assistance Grant. There will be $1,000 and $2,000 grants available. Applications are accepted until August 19th at 5:00 PM. For questions, call 253-835-2414 or email CovidGrant@cityoffederalway.com.

Researchers Test the Effectiveness of Various Types of Masks

Prior to providing free masks to at-risk and under-served populations in the community, Duke University physician Eric Westman thought he needed to make sure whether the virus-blocking claims mask suppliers made were true, so he approached his colleagues in the Duke Department of Physics. As director of the Advanced Light Imaging and Spectroscopy facility, Professor Martin Fischer, Ph.D., stepped up and demonstrated a simple method that uses a laser beam, a cell phone, a box, and a lens.

The test proved that face masks are effective in reducing droplet emissions during normal wear. Out of the 14 commonly available masks, the most effective mask was the fitted N95, while the three-layer surgical masks and cotton face coverings made at home also performed well. The least effective masks were the folded bandanas, knitted masks and neck fleeces often used by runners. Click here to see the actual test.

CDC Updates Travel Advice for Several Countries

On August 6th, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention updated its travel advisory information, providing a geographic risk assessment for COVID-19 transmission. Visit the CDC’s website to check current travel health notices for each country.

Weekly King County Health Update: Staying Cool during the COVID-19 Pandemic

During this pandemic, wearing face coverings is crucial in helping lessen the spread of COVID-19. However, wearing face coverings for extended periods of time, especially in the current heat, can be uncomfortable. Overheating is a serious issue but there are steps you can take to protect yourself. Here are some tips from risk communications specialist Meredith Li-Vollmer at King County Public Health:

• Try not to spend too much time in hot indoor or outdoor places. If these spaces are unavoidable, it is okay to take a safely distanced “mask break.” Make sure you are outside and at least 6 feet away from others before you remove your face covering. Remember to put your face covering back on before going back to your activity.

• Stay hydrated and drink lots of water even if you aren’t feeling thirsty.

• To keep your home cool, close window blinds and curtains when the temperature rises, and vent the house in the morning or at night when the temperatures are cooler.

If you would like to learn more about how to stay safe in hot weather during a pandemic, please click here.

Note: The illustrations were created prior to COVID-19, so they do not include the wearing of face coverings that are now required in public settings.

University of Washington: COVID-19 Update

In response to COVID-19, the University of Washington and UW Medicine have organized a biweekly overview of current data and information on UW Virology Testing Results and COVID-19 Inpatient Cases.

UW Virology Testing Results
As of August 6th, there were 5,844 total tests, with 5,525 testing negative and 319 testing positive/inconclusive. To view UW Virology’s COVID-19 dashboard, click here.

UW Medicine COVID-19 Inpatient Cases
As of August 6th, there are 28 UW Medicine inpatients who are COVID-19 positive. The chart shows the number of COVID-19 positive patients at UW Medicine hospitals over time, but is not inclusive of all cases in the region.

King County Case Update

Today, Seattle – King County Public Health reported 81 new cases, bringing the total in King County to 16,830. In addition, Public Health reported 3 new deaths, bringing the total in the county to 679.

Stay In. Stay Healthy. Stay Strong.

Pete von Reichbauer
King County Councilmember

Washington trivia answer:

Located in Vancouver, Washington, Pearson Field is the oldest continuously operating airfield in the Pacific Northwest and is one of the two oldest continuously operating in the United States. Pearson Field’s history began with the landing of a Baldwin Airship piloted by Lincoln Beachey in 1905.

During WWI, the army operated a spruce mill for aircraft parts. In 1921, regular army flights at Pearson Field began with the opening of a forest patrol base. Formerly known as Vancouver Barracks, the field was dedicated by the order of Secretary of War Major General John L. Hines in honor of First Lieutenant Alexander Pearson Jr. of the United States Army, who was a prominent aviation figure in the Army Air Service. Pearson served as an Army test pilot, and held numerous flight records including the world speed record in March 1923.

In 2012, the field was recognized as an American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA) historic aerospace site. Pearson Field is the only airport in the U.S. that operates totally within the boundaries of a national historic reserve.

transparent pixel

Contact me: pete.vonreichbauer@kingcounty.gov
206-477-1007, 800-325-6165, TTY/TDD 206-296-1024
Website: www.kingcounty.gov/vonReichbauer
Facebook: www.facebook.com/pete.vonreichbauer

King County logo