School Begins This Thursday, Please Walk and Drive Safely

When students in the Bellevue School District start the 2018-2019 school year on Thursday, Aug. 30, there will be some new traffic patterns to accompany the district’s first brand new – non-replacement – school in 46 years. But the message remains the same from Bellevue Police and Transportation officials, who work with the school district. They want to make sure students, parents and commuters get to their destinations safely.

The Wilburton Elementary School, located at 12300 Main Street, is Bellevue’s first new non-replacement school in 46 years.

The new facility is Wilburton Elementary, located at 12300 Main St., near both Wilburton Hill Park and the Bellevue Botanical Garden. The last non-replacement school built was Somerset Elementary School in 1972. Work on some streets and sidewalks is still wrapping up, so adults and children traveling near Wilburton need to be extra cautious. With the new facility comes a new 20 mile per hour school speed zone on 124th Avenue NE as well as Main Street in front of the school. Motorists should be prepared to slow to 20 miles per hour when the school speed zone lights are flashing.

Also of transportation note is BellevueSchoolPool, now in its third year. The program is an effort to reduce traffic congestion around district schools by facilitating carpooling, biking and walking to school. It’s a partnership between the district, city, King County and TransManage, the Bellevue Downtown Association’s transportation arm.

Bellevue Police remind motorists that when yellow lights are flashing in school speed zones, the speed limit is reduced to 20 mph. In other school zones, the 20-mph limit is in effect when children are present, so be prepared to slow down and watch out for students. Also, remember to stop for school buses when lights are flashing or the stop sign is out — or be prepared to pay a substantial fine. The city’s photo enforcement cameras will operate during times lights are flashing at Odle Middle School, Lake Hills Elementary School and Sunset Elementary School.

Here are some safety tips for drivers and pedestrians from the Bellevue Police Department:

  • Slow down in school zones. The stopping distance of a vehicle traveling 30 mph is nearly twice the stopping distance of a vehicle traveling 20 mph.
  • Pay attention while driving. Washington’s distracted driving law makes it illegal to use a handheld personal electronic device while driving, even when stopped at a traffic sign or signal or stuck in traffic. Fines are moving violations that are reported to insurance companies.
  • Watch for pedestrians when entering a school driveway or turning a corner.
  • Stop for children and other pedestrians getting on and off school buses. It’s unlawful to pass a school bus when the red lights are flashing.
  • Stop behind the crosswalk at intersections to allow room for pedestrians. Pedestrians should use crosswalks and cross with the crossing sign or light.
  • If your kids walk to school, make sure they know the rules of the road and your expectations.

Bellevue Police Arrest Man After Several Overnight Fires in Bellevue, Redmond

At 12:45 a.m. this morning, Bellevue Police and Fire responded to reports of several dumpster fires in the area of the 14700 block of NE 20th Street in Bellevue. Officers arrived in the area and located several dumpsters in the area that were burning.  Continue reading “Bellevue Police Arrest Man After Several Overnight Fires in Bellevue, Redmond”

Three Arrested After Robbery Spree in Bellevue

Investigators with the Bellevue Police Department have arrested three suspects that are believed to have been involved in a robbery spree that took place in Bellevue late last week. On Thursday, August 9, Bellevue Police responded to three separate robbery reports. All three instances involved female victims that were walking in the parking lots of busy retail centers. In each case, the suspects would approach the victims on foot and forcibly ripped necklaces off of the victims’ necks before escaping to a waiting getaway car.

Immediately following the series of robberies, Bellevue Police Detectives began working with investigators with the Bellevue Police Special Operations Group to identify and locate the involved suspects.

On Saturday, August 11, Bellevue Police detectives with the assistance of the Bellevue Police SWAT team, arrested one suspect, an 18-year-old male Bellevue Resident at a residence he had been staying at in the Lake Hills neighborhood of Bellevue. Today, investigators, again with the assistance of the Bellevue SWAT team, located and arrested the two remaining suspects, a 16-year-old male Covington resident and a 22-year-old female Federal Way resident. All three suspects were interviewed by Detectives and were later booked into the King County Jail and the King County Youth Detention facility. All three were arrested for suspicion of second degree robbery.

Bellevue Police are asking anyone that believes they may have been a victim of these individuals to contact police to make a report.