Wet weather, potholes in Washington make grocery deliveries challenging
With four major mountain passes closed and the COVID-19 pandemic already delaying deliveries, and a closure on I-5 Friday morning, some grocery store shelves are starting to feel the pinch.
Cara Stinson drives a semi truck with a 53-foot trailer on I-5 every day between Olympia and Portland to make grocery deliveries to Trader Joe’s stores. She told KIRO Radio on Thursday that she had to pull over after driving into some major potholes on the freeway.
“They have got to be deep because my truck, it set off the alarm,” she said. “… It just really knocks my truck. I feel like I got hit by something.”
Stinson says truck drivers don’t want to drive around the Chehalis area in Washington because of the big potholes and the weather.
“I’m sitting here at a rest stop at Scatter Creek and it’s just packed with trucks, so I imagine everybody is getting off the road,” she said.
The potholes are reportedly opening up because of all the melting ice and heavy rainfall. The National Weather Service confirms that when you get ice and snow followed by heavy rainfall and standing water, potholes can’t be far behind.
“This situation with the freezing temperatures and the snow and now the heavy rain is the perfect scenario for pothole development, let’s put it that way,” said Dana Felton, a meteorologist with the NWS.
Rising flood water from the Chehalis River closed a 20-mile stretch of I-5 in both directions between Grand Mound and US 12 south of Chehalis for about five hours on Friday morning.
Weather forecasts show flood waters are expected to recede on Sunday.
Meanwhile, the local supply chain may see a little relief after the first ship to pull into the Port of Seattle’s upgraded terminal 4 was unloaded on Friday.
The Port of Seattle can now handle the biggest cargo ships working the Pacific Ocean.
KIRO Radio’s Lisa Brooks contributed to this report.