In response to the tweet City of Seattle communications director Jeff Reading released a statement:
“It’s never acceptable for a city employee to ridicule members of the public. I understand the tweet in question was meant humorously, but many — myself included — took it quite differently. Mayor Murray holds a high standard of respect for communications with the public across all city departments. We will ensure that this type of offending humor is not repeated in communications to the public by City of Seattle employees.”
Officials with the West Seattle Transportation said the tweet was inappropriate and unprofessional.
SDOT spokesman Rick Sheridan released a statement after the tweet:
“The use of the hat meme was not intended to insult drivers but to highlight a roadway problem and help drivers make decisions about their trips. We apologize to anyone that was offended by the tweet.
Our traffic management center personnel typically use humorous memes to highlight problematic situations for drivers. The staff member was trying to note that rubbernecking near a collision site was creating delays.
We have removed the tweet from our Twitter feed. The staff member’s supervisor will also reinforce the department’s standards for social media. Again, we apologize if anyone was offended.”