Three inches of snow fell per hour today on I-90 Snoqualmie Pass, adding to the more than five feet of snow that accumulated in the last seven days. The roadway remains closed at this hour.
The Washington State Department of Transportation (WSDOT) advises drivers to carry chains, allow extra time for trips and prepare for challenging travel conditions and closures on all Cascade Range mountain passes.
After a noontime avalanche west of the summit covered I-90’s westbound lanes with 10 feet of snow, WSDOT closed this primary cross-state route from North Bend to Ellensburg. The roadway remains closed while crews perform avalanche control work. They plan to reassess conditions by early evening and determine whether it’s safe to reopen the roadway.
US 2 Stevens Pass and US 12 White Pass are currently open, but drivers can expect heavy traffic and winter driving conditions over these two-lane mountain pass highways. US 12 White Pass is experiencing heavy snow this afternoon.
WSDOT crews are working 24 hours a day, battling heavy snow, high winds and poor visibility. WSDOT avalanche control crews worked overnight on both US 2 Stevens Pass and I-90 Snoqualmie Pass.
I-90 Snoqualmie Pass was open this morning, but spun-out vehicles forced WSDOT to close the roadway at 11:30 a.m. Just before noon, the natural avalanche just west of the summit covered all three westbound lanes.
Weather reports predict heavy mountain snow and challenging driving conditions over all Cascade Mountain pass highways at least through Tuesday.
Visit WSDOT’s Flickr site for photos of I-90 Snoqualmie Pass and crews’ snow-clearing efforts.
WSDOT needs drivers to:
· Stay engaged. Monitor current weather and traffic conditions.
· Carry chains. Studded tires do not meet the chain requirement.
· Bookmark and use WSDOT’s online tools:
o Traffic cameras: www.wsdot.wa.gov/traffic/default.aspx
Travel alerts: www.wsdot.wa.gov/traffic/trafficalerts
Mountain passes: www.wsdot.wa.gov/traffic/passes
Traffic products for mobile phones and other wireless devices: www.wsdot.wa.gov/traffic/seattle/products/
WSDOT Twitter feed: twitter.com/wsdot
· Call 511 for current traffic conditions
· Tune to Highway Advisory Radio and watch electronic highway signs for information.
· Drive for conditions: Slow down and allow more room between vehicles.
· Don’t crowd the plow. Snowplows plow far and wide, and the plow blade is often wider than the lane.
· Make sure vehicles are winter ready: www.wsdot.wa.gov/winter.
WSDOT keeps people, businesses and the economy moving by operating and improving the state's transportation systems. To learn more about what we're doing, go to www.wsdot.wa.gov/news for pictures, videos, news and blogs. Real time traffic information is available at www.wsdot.wa.gov/traffic or by dialing 5-1-1.
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