Slowdown Lowdown

We're stuck in traffic so you don't have to be

NOTICE: Slowdown Lowdown has moved.

With the launch of our new website, we've moved Slowdown Lowdown.
Visit the new section.

Archives: Aug. 2011


ALL CLEAR: Crash blocks SR 7 at Alder Store

Both directions of state Route 7 are blocked in front of the Alder Store because of a two-vehicle crash.

The crash involves a pickup truck and passenger car, the state DOT reports.

Troopers were headed to the scene.

UPDATE at 10:15 a.m.: The crash has been cleared. Both directions of SR 7  are back open to traffic.


Heavy traffic reported on northbound I-5 between Lacey and Lakewood

UPDATE as of 9:15 p.m.:The backups now extend from Marvin Road in Lacey to Thorne Lane in Lakewood, according to WSDOT.

INITIAL POST: Heavy traffic is causing backups on northbound Interstate 5 between Pierce and Thurston Counties, the Washington State Department of Transportation reports.

Backups extend about 15 miles between Pacific Avenue in Olympia and Joint Base Lewis-McChord.

Troopers said there are no incidents on I-5 and drivers should avoid weekend traffic.


Traffic Q&A: Is it always illegal to jaywalk?

Question: Is it illegal statewide to jaywalk or just in areas where specified? There are many bus stops, for example, that are blocks away from crosswalks. Auburn Way for example. Are we truly expected to walk to the nearest crosswalk when in some cases those getting off the bus live right across the street?

Dorothy Churchill, Bonney Lake

Answer: State law doesn’t say you have to be in a crosswalk to cross a street. What it says is you can’t cross in the middle of a block if there are intersections at each end that are controlled by signals.

Read more »


Prepare for overnight ramp closures at JBLM starting Monday

This from WSDOT. Thankfully, the work is happening overnight, so it shouldn’t add to the heavy daytime backups we’ve been seeing lately.

LAKEWOOD– A paving project that smoothes a busy stretch of Interstate 5 is underway in Lakewood and will impact access to and from Joint Base Lewis-McChord (JBLM) next week.

Drivers can expect ramp closures to and from the JBLM Main Gate located at exit 120 overnights Monday through Friday, Aug. 22 – 26, while Washington State Department of Transportation’s (WSDOT) contractor, Tucci and Sons, Inc. grind the ramps smooth.

Ramp closures are as follows:

· Monday, Aug.

Read more »


ALL CLEAR: Head-on crash blocks both directions of SR 507

A two-car, head-on crash is blocking both directions of state Route 507 near the Roy Y, the state DOT reports.

State Patrol troopers and firefighters are on the scene.

UPDATE: Central Pierce Fire and Rescue responded to the crash and extricated two patients.

One was taken to Good Samaritan Hospital in Puyallup; the other to Tacoma General Hospital in Tacoma, the fire agency reported. Neither appeared to have life threatening injuries.

The State Patrol reports that a tow truck in headed to the scene to clear up the crash.

UPDATE as of 12:05 p.m.: The crash has been cleared.



Be prepared for nighttime work on I-5, Thorne Lane in Lakewood this week

Nighttime drivers traveling north on Interstate 5 near Joint Base Lewis-McChord should expect delays this week as construction crews pave the highway.

Lane and ramp closures begin tonight on a two-mile stretch of I-5 from Berkeley Street Southwest to Gravelly Lake Drive, the state DOT reports.

Two northbound lanes will be closed tonight and Tuesday night, starting at 10 p.m. The lanes will  reopen to drivers by 5 a.m. the following day.

Construction work on Thorne Lane also will impact drivers, DOT reports. The road will be reduced to one-way, alternating traffic tonight through Thursday. The work is scheduled to

Read more »


Southbound I-705 to close Mon-Fri for bridge work

Nighttime closures are scheduled for southbound Interstate 705 Monday to Friday while construction continues on the Murray Morgan Bridge.

Drivers will be detoured from 8 p.m. to 6 a.m. each night so crews can install work platforms on the bridge. Signs will be in place to send drivers in one of the following directions:

-       Those going south on Schuster Parkway will detour south on Pacific Avenue to the South 13th Street on-ramp to I-705.

-       Those going south on Stadium Way will detour south on Commerce Avenue, turn left on South 7th Street to Pacific Avenue, turn right on

Read more »


Six-mile backup on northbound I-5 near JBLM

Heavy traffic volumes on northbound Interstate 5 are causing a six-mile backup between Nisqually and Joint Base Lewis-McChord, according to the Washington Department of Transportation.

There are no blocking incidents being reported and motorist are being encouraged to delay, if possible, traveling this section of I-5 until after 7 p.m.