Seattle businesses board up in case of post-election unrest

SEATTLE — More Seattle businesses are putting up plywood in case post-election demonstrations turn destructive.

Work crews were in several neighborhoods on Monday, securing windows of offices, apartment buildings and stores.

Steve Freitas at Compton Lumber in Seattle said demand for plywood jumped again last week as property managers prepared for unrest. “It’s crazy, the amount of material we’re sending out and having difficulty getting in,” he said.

Plywood prices are way up this year as the pandemic and fires in Oregon resulted in limited supply.

In this year of protests and the pandemic, plywood had already been a mainstay on many Seattle storefronts.

In addition to plywood, crews are turning to products like Riot Glass to protect downtown businesses.

A crew putting in the stronger glass at the downtown store had already installed the same product at two other businesses.

The Seattle Police Department stated it is staffed up for whatever happens.

Online, activists are spreading the word about protests both Tuesday and Wednesday nights.

“We obviously hope for a peaceful outcome — whatever happens this week — because these residents and businesses don’t need another hurdle to overcome. They don’t need it,” said James Sido, of the Downtown Seattle Association.

With so many commercial buildings boarded up, the Seattle Fire Department is reminding property owners to keep address numbers and emergency fire hose connections uncovered in case of an emergency.

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