Watching the crews from
Manson and Mowat build the new Manette Bridge is like a kind of
As someone naive yet fascinated by by such a mammoth project,
each day brings its share of surprises. What will spring up
We’re now about two months into the $57.8 million project and
the piers are taking shape. The 12-foot wide cylinders are mostly
filled with giant purple rebar cages (see photos) and crews are
pouring concrete into them. The cylinder is plunged deep into the
ground underneath the Port Washington Narrows.
On the pier closest to the downtown Bremerton waterfront, a
complete concrete base appears to be poured, as you can also
Most days, spectators frequent the 80-year-old Manette Bridge’s
skinny rickety walkway, wide-eyed like me to watch a construction
company perform what seems like a Herculean feat.
Keep it coming crews!
The Washington Traffic Safety Commission came out with its
annual press release this week touting how great the state is about
wearing seat belts. It was fourth in the nation this year at 97.6
percent, behind Michigan (98), Hawaii and Oregon. The nationwide
average is 84 percent.
What intrigues me is who the 2.3 percent still holding out
Unlike we old people, who had to learn new tricks, anybody
under, say, 45 years old has no excuse whatsoever. They’ve been in
seat belts since the day they were born. Actually before they were
born. It’s about as automatic as breathing. It was tougher on us
oldsters, whose first cars didn’t even come with seat belts, which
become mandatory until 1966.
Who are these 2.3 percent? Lazy? Drunk? Authority protesters?
Then they need seat belts more than normal people.
Two percent doesn’tt sound like much, but Washington State
Patrol Chief John Batiste said troopers still write about 47,000
tickets a year for not buckling up.
“It appears that enforcement is the only way to win their
compliance, and we will not hesitate to use that tool,” he
Fine by me. If it’s too much work for them, hit ‘em with a $142
The Washington rate continues to improve, but it gets
increasingly difficult the closer you get to 100 percent. It
improved 1.2 percent from 2009, meaning one-third of those who
hadn’t been buckling up decided to start.