Monday, April 22, 2024

Winter storms not done with Oregon yet as wind, ice and snow continue

ODOT crews work to clear roads of winter debris

Hazardous winter driving weather is far from done in Oregon as freezing rain, heavy snow and high winds continued in several area of the state.

The expected Wednesday thaw never quite materialized as roads in western Oregon remained slick in many areas. Ice covered trees and branches brought down power lines while highway crews continued their battle with the elements.

The National Weather Service forecast for Thursday and Friday call for continued freezing rain in the Coast Range, the Columbia River Gorge, Portland area and the Cascades.

According to the Oregon Department of Transportation (ODOT), “Maintenance crews crews continued to work12-hour shifts as they have been since the start of the storm.

Lincoln City crews ready to assist with plowing equipment

Approximately 400 snowplows have been clearing roads around the state. And as of Wednesday, in the ODOT region that encompasses most of the Willamette Valley and the North Coast, we’ve used 1.7 million pounds of salt since the storm began, the most we’ve ever used in the region.”

ODOT asks travelers to consider delaying their travels until their roads are safe. Those who must use the roads should consult Tripcheck.com and check conditions on their route.

Tripcheck.com provides live cameras showing road conditions around the state along with other information that can help travel planning like altitude and temperature. ODOT noted that some Tripcheck.com cameras are offline because of the storm.

Interstate 84 through the Columbia River Gorge late Wednesday after a closure of nearly 31 hours. Conditions remained precarious Thursday with ice, snow and chain restrictions. ODOT was monitoring the highway condition and will close the highway if the road becomes unsafe.

Interstate 5 just south of Eugene will have rolling slowdowns Thursday to assist utility crews in restoring seven downed lines over both directions of the interstate.

Freezing rain was hitting central Oregon hard Thursday from Redmond north. U.S. 26 was closed west of Warm Springs at one point by semis that jackknifed in freezing rain.

OR 126W and OR 36 remain closed in the Coast Range due to down trees.

In eastern Oregon, OR 244 is closed, with local freight and passenger vehicles only allowed and no I-84 access for commercial vehicles. Most highways in the region remain covered with snow and ice or both with temperatures below or just above freezing. Slight warming may come by Thursday afternoon but temperatures may fall back below freezing by night. Mixed precipitation — snow and freezing rain — throughout eastern Oregon will continue Thursday into Friday, making travel difficult.

Don Williams
Don Williamshttps://lincolncityhomepage.com
Don Williams serves as publisher and editor of The Lincoln City Homepage.

1 COMMENT

  1. In the Albany area we have thawed out & we had the sun shining with a temp of around 40! I went out to the driveway barefooted & without a raincoat! It’s been a great day! For those who are still bombarded with ice, snow & freezing I wish warm thoughts for you all & warm days ahead.

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