Motorists from Portland to Eugene and from the Coast Range to the Cascades could receive a range of severe winter weather starting as early as Thursday, according to weather forecasters. The predicted weather will make driving hazardous in many locations.
Although some uncertainty remains, Mother Nature is expected to produce some combination of cold temperatures, snow, sleet, freezing rain and wind which will create serious problems for travelers throughout Northwest Oregon. Freezing rain is expected in the Willamette Valley as early as Friday evening and Saturday. Motorists are encouraged to postpone trips, delay travel, and wait for the weather to moderate.
Keeping traffic off the roads also allows ODOT crews to operate effectively. During the severe winter conditions, ODOT will deploy, as appropriate, all available tools in its winter arsenal, including plows, sanders and deicers.
Here are some tips for travelers should an icy winter storm strik
Those who must travel on icy roads should:
- · Use chains or traction tires;
- · Slow down and be prepared for slow traffic;
- · Leave extra stopping distance and:
Make sure your vehicle is stocked with the following:
- · Flashlight and cell phone (with charger);
- · Extra food and water;
- · Blankets and extra warm clothes, boots, hat and gloves; and
For additional resources on winter driving and preparedness, please visit: http://www.oregon.gov/ODOT/COMM/Pages/winterdriving.aspx
ODOT crews have treated the roadways with anti-icing materials for the last several days due to the sub-freezing temperatures. While, the anti-icing chemicals help reduce roadway freezing by lowering the freezing temperature of water, the chemicals do not prevent the road from freezing. Also, any melting snow can dilute these chemicals and cause the roads to freeze.
ODOT crews will be on the roads working around the clock plowing, sanding and using anti-icing materials. However, with the expected storm to cover such a wide area and at all elevations, motorists should be aware that not all sections of roadway can be treated. Motorists should expect hazardous driving conditions.
If freezing roads occur, ODOT crews will use the same anti-icing/deicing chemicals to break the bond between the ice and the roadway and use sanding material as needed. Drivers should avoid icy roads until conditions improve.
Know Before You Go: Call 5-1-1 or visit www.TripCheck.com for the latest real-time traffic updates and camera views of Oregon’s highways.