Mayor Murray and SPD are asking people to please stay away from the Seattle Center area in the wake of this morning's crash of a KOMO helicopter that killed the two people onboard and seriously injured a driver in a car where the crash occurred.
EMP and the Monorail are closed. It is likely that any school activities that may have been scheduled for that area (like Science Center) are cancelled. You might want to check with your school if any outings were scheduled in that area for this week.
It's a sad day for all reporters and journalists. It makes me think of two things.
One was the day of the Cafe Racer shootings when no one knew where the shooter had gone. I went over to Roosevelt High School that was in lock-down and surrounded by school security staff and SPD. I ran into Times' reporter, Brian Rosenthal, and remarked that I couldn't believe he and I were standing around looking for news when there could be a shooter nearby. He, in his 23-year old wisdom, looked at me and said, "That's how you know you're a reporter."
It was reported today that one person who was also nearby the helicopter crash just left the scene and no one knew why. I think I might have an idea why he did that.
I can recall a day, decades ago, when I was at the University of Arizona. It was a bright, sunny day and my class had ended early. I was walking the main drive area up the center of school to get some lunch. There is a nearby Air Force base and they always practiced over the skies of Tucson.
I heard a plane overhead and then, I didn't. Its engine noise stopped and several of us looked up right away. The plane came drifting down, without sound, but in a seemingly controlled manner. I saw it come over a line of U of A buildings down to the street (the buildings blocked my view of the street) and then a huge BOOM! and fire and smoke. The impact was like an earthquake under our feet.
The pilot ejected safely but the plane landed on two girls in a car who were killed instantly.
Many people ran to see what had happened but I just walked away. I couldn't look.
It remains one of the most unworldly things I ever experienced - a plane just dropping down out of the sky.