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transportation

Ride-hailing firm Uber has fired about 20 of its employees, including some senior executives, after an investigation into more than 200 sexual harassment and other workplace-misconduct claims.

The company is not commenting on the findings of the report from Perkins Coie, which was hired after former Uber engineer Susan Fowler last year alleged that she was sexually harassed, and her complaints disregarded by the company's human resources department.

We all know that cellphones and driving can be a dangerous mix, and yet a quick glance at the sound of a ping can be irresistible to many motorists.

So beyond turning off your cellphone or leaving it at home, Apple has a new solution aimed at keeping drivers' eyes off the screen and on the road. When Apple's iOS 11 update comes out this fall, it will include a "Do Not Disturb While Driving" mode.

Southeast Alaska is known as the Panhandle:

It's a long, narrow strip of mainland coastline, plus 1,000 islands and the braided waterways that surround them.

In most places, there are no roads connecting the communities there, so Alaskans depend heavily on ferries: the Alaska Marine Highway System.

Twenty percent of children who were in a car crash where someone died were not buckled in properly or were not wearing a seat belt at all, a study finds, as were 43 percent of children who died themselves.

And child fatality rates in deadly car crashes vary widely by state.

Parking in Seattle could become a thing of the past.
Flickr Photo/James Callan (CC BY NC SA 2.0)/https://flic.kr/p/4mBfBq

We know: It never feels like there are enough parking spots when you are driving around Seattle.

But there are more than you think. There are 500 million parking spaces in the U.S. – the same land area of Delaware and Rhode Island combined.

Local Wonder bill radke
KUOW Photo/Bond Huberman

President Trump denies any connection between his campaign and Russian election hackers, but the Department of Justice appoints a former FBI director as special counselor just to make sure.

File photo of Paine Field from August 2009.
Wikipedia Photo/Jelson25 (Public Domain)

Seattle area travelers will have two airport options starting next year. Alaska Airlines says it's bringing commercial flights to Paine Field, bordering Everett and Mukilteo, by fall of 2018. It's the first airline to do so.

The majority of Washingtonians with a regular driver's license will have an interesting choice to make the next time they renew—a choice possibly coming to Oregon too. Continue with the same old license they have grown accustomed to or apply for a so-called "enhanced driver license."

A trio of measures Gov. Jay Inslee will sign into law Tuesday aims to make roads in Washington state safer. They include a new ban on using electronics behind the wheel.

Courtesy of Seattle Bike Blog/Tom Fucoloro

Bill Radke speaks with founder of the Seattle Bike Blog Tom Fucoloro about a new stationless bike share system that could be could be coming to Seattle this summer. Fucoloro test rode a bike from bluegogo and explains how a new system like this would work. 

car young driver transportation
Flickr Photo/State Farm (CC BY 2.0)/https://flic.kr/p/fQcc5C

A bill signed by Governor Jay Inslee will reimburse caregivers or foster children for the costs associated with getting a driver's license.

It’s expensive to become a licensed driver in Washington state. There are permitting fees, driver's education classes, testing and insurance costs. 


Park and rides like this one at Mountlake and I-5 are filling too early
Flickr photo/SounderBruce (CC BY-SA 2.0) http://bit.ly/2hjshle

If the park-and-ride lot near you is getting overcrowded, you may be in luck.

King County Metro is partnering with Diamond Parking services to bring 250 new parking spaces online in June.

Drivers wait to cross Mercer Street
KUOW Photo/Joshua McNichols

Bill Radke talks to Chris Long, the traffic engineering manager with the city of Bellevue, about adaptive traffic lights and how they can change the flow of traffic in busy areas. 

KUOW PHOTO/BOND HUBERMAN

Weed is legal, but we're still figuring out how to talk about it around kids. State lawmakers do know this much: A billboard with a cat saying "IM SO HIGH RIGHT MEOW" goes too far.

Bertha has finally finished boring through the muck underneath downtown Seattle. Now comes the hard part: deciding how much drivers should have to pay to drive through a new tunnel.

Washington state lawmakers sent a distracted driving crackdown to the governor's desk late Wednesday. And lawmakers in Oregon are steadily steering their own version of this through legislative committees.

Jeff Bezos speaks at the Apollo rocket engine unveiling at The Museum of Flight, showing the injector plate from an F-1 rocket used on Apollo 12.
Courtesy of The Museum of Flight/Ted Huetter

Jeannie Yandel talks to Alan Boyle of Geekwire about the possibility of taking a hybrid, electric plane for short regional trips and Jeff Bezos' dream of people in space. 

It’s taken five years, but injured railroad worker Dwight Hauck sees victory at hand. Washington lawmakers are on the verge of requiring new safety standards for private transport companies that shuttle rail crews between trains. 


On March 23, 2011, union railroader Hauck nearly lost his life. He was the lone survivor of a crash in a rail yard in Kelso, Washington. 


“I don’t remember anything at all,” Hauck said. 

 


Jeannie Yandel talks with travel writer Harriet Baskas about what airlines can and cannot do when flights are overbooked. Baskas blogs at Stuck at the Airport.

File photo of Uber driver near the San Francisco International Airport.
AP Photo/Jeff Chiu

The city of Seattle's law to let Lyft, Uber and taxi drivers form a union has been halted in federal court. The law is the first of its kind in the nation.

Members of Bertha's crew pose with the American flag after the SR 99 tunneling machine broke into her disassembly pit on April 4, 2017.
WSDOT

It’s over.

As dozens of people looked on Tuesday, Bertha broke through to daylight after a nearly two mile dig under Seattle that took almost four years. Seattle is one step closer to replacing the aging Alaskan Way viaduct and moving a two mile section of state route 99 underground. 


Updated at 4 p.m. ET

It was the world's biggest tunneling machine when it first chewed into the loose dirt and gravel on Seattle's waterfront in 2013. With a cutting head nearly 60 feet wide, it had been built in Japan and shipped across the Pacific to dig a two-mile-long double-decker highway tunnel under downtown.

The machine was named "Bertha" in honor of a 1920s-era mayor — the prefatory "Big" always implied, never stated.

Flickr Photo/Jean-Pierre Chamberland (CC-BY-NC-ND)

Bill Radke talks with Mark Hallenbeck about transportation in the Seattle region. Hallenbeck is the director of the Washington State Transportation Center at the University of Washington. 

Scroll down to see what listeners had to say during the show. Or join the discussion on KUOW's Facebook page

Ryan Packer, senior editor at The Urbanist, and daily Pronto commuter checks in his bike at the end of his last morning ride to work.
KUOW Photo/Matt Martin

City crews are loading up those lime green bikes you may have seen people riding around. The bikes were part of Pronto, Seattle’s short-lived bikeshare program. The city has put the brakes on the system because not enough people were actually riding the bikes.

WSDOT

Remember Bertha, and how lots of people thought it would never finish digging the two-mile tunnel beneath Seattle's waterfront?

Well, the machine reached daylight around midday on Tuesday. After nearly four years of digging, the machine is about to reach the finish line on Highway 99 near the Space Needle.

Sound Transit's light rail shot from the SeaTac Airport Station.
Flickr Photo/Michael @NW Lens (CC BY NC ND 2.0)/https://flic.kr/p/9P9hnJ

Bill Radke speaks with Sound Transit CEO Peter Rogoff about the future of mass transit in Seattle. Rogoff also answers questions from callers and social media. 

At its peak, the Pronto system had 54 stations throughout Seattle.
KUOW Photo/Gil Aegerter

The lime green bikes stationed throughout Seattle will be gone by next week as the Pronto bike share program shuts down.

But it may not be the final chapter.

Sound Transit bus.
Flickr Photo/wings777 (CC BY NC ND 2.0)/https://flic.kr/p/63X142

Sound Transit has agreed to work with the state legislature on concerns over car tab fees.

Voters approved an increased car tab tax when they voted for the Sound Transit 3 package in November. However, as car-tab bills began arriving, the increases shocked some voters. And there's growing outrage over the way the tax is calculated.

KUOW PHOTO/BOND HUBERMAN

The fate of President Trump's health care plan comes down to the wire.

We get into the pros and cons of Seattle's proposed soda tax and homeless levy.

How generous might Washington state get when it comes to paid leave?

And some people are pretty surprised to find out that their car tabs are way more expensive this time around.

The nation's roads, bridges, airports, water and transit systems are in pretty bad shape, according to the civil engineers who plan and design such infrastructure.

The new report card from the American Society of Civil Engineers gives the infrastructure of the United States a D-plus.

You may brag about your ability to multitask, but lawmakers in the Pacific Northwest insist you don’t do it behind the wheel. The Washington Legislature passed a pair of bills this week that would increase penalties for dangerous driving habits.

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