10/26/2010: "Studded Tires Time"
Because of the challenging conditions ahead in the mountains, WSDOT officials decided to allow drivers to install studded tires starting Tuesday, 10-26-10
The weather should clear by Wednesday, so if travelers are staying in the lower elevations and not crossing a mountain pass, WSDOT requests they wait until Nov. 1.
Forecasts call for winter storms with snow levels dropping to 3000 feet today through Tuesday for all major Cascade Mountain passes. The higher elevation passes may be most impacted by the storm.
• I-90 Snoqualmie Pass (3,022 feet) forecast calls for 2 to 4 inches of wet snow or slush today into Tuesday.
• US 2 Stevens Pass (4,061 feet) forecast indicates a convergence zone over Stevens Pass that could bring up to 15 inches of snow before Wednesday.
• US 12 White Pass (4,500 feet), forecast calls for close to 12 inches of snow through Tuesday.
• On SR 410 Chinook Pass (5,430 feet), drivers should expect temporary road closures as forecasts call for close to 24 inches of snow.
• On SR 20 North Cascades (5,477 feet), also expect temporary road closures as forecasts call for close to 24 inches of snow.
Weather forecasts call for warmer and dry conditions by Wednesday.
“Check the weather reports, check the WSDOT Web page, prepare for winter conditions, carry chains and slow down,” said Chris Christopher, WSDOT Director of Maintenance Operations. “Our crews are ready, but we need drivers’ help. Know the conditions of where you are going, and drive for those conditions.”
“We have concerns about roadway damage from studded tires and encourage drivers to visit their tire dealers and find out about tires that provide traction and are legal for use year-round,” Christopher said.
Find a list of items to carry in that winter-driving emergency kit, details about WSDOT’s winter program, answers to frequently asked questions and more at www.wsdot.wa.gov/winter.