LOCAL NEWS

WSDOT: Drivers need to be prepared heading over the passes

Dec 8, 2022, 2:53 PM
winter...
Photo from Flickr

After a series of multi-hour closures on Interstate 90, including a 15-car collision Sunday, a 38-car collision Wednesday, and now three semi crashes Thursday, the Washington State Department of Transportation (WSDOT) says drivers are not prepared enough to drive across the mountain passes with winter weather conditions.

WSDOT spokesperson Summer Derry says drivers need to use caution and proper winter driving strategies, which have been causing delays on the road.

Eastbound I-90 reopens east of Kittitas after 38-car collision

“Our job at the Washington State Department of Transportation is certainly to keep the highway open. And we do that to the best of our ability. A lot of this comes down onto drivers,” Derry said. “I think that giving yourself plenty of safe following distance. Slowing down driving for conditions is certainly something that drivers should follow, especially during winter months.”

Snoqualmie Pass has already been closed for a total of 30 hours this fall, which WSDOT said doesn’t normally happen until late December.

Washington state has had an increased amount of snowfall in the passes earlier in the season than we do in a typical year, with 100 inches of snow so far — a quarter of the total amount of snowfall that the Cascade passes get for the entire year on average.

Now more than ever, WSDOT says it is time for inexperienced drivers to stay prepared in slick, slippery conditions. It’s a learning opportunity, especially for young drivers who have never driven in the snow before.

King County Metro pulls 8% of bus fleet for steering issues

“I also think that there’s an opportunity here for younger drivers,” Derry said. “Snow and ice is not something that you can learn on your phone or on YouTube. This takes years of practice. And so really having parents and caregivers spending quite a bit of time with their young drivers, taking them to an empty parking lot spinning out for a couple of hours, really teaching themselves how to navigate in the snow.”

One of Derry’s biggest recommendations is for drivers to stock up on supplies in their cars to be prepared if they get stuck.

“I’m stuck in my car for a couple of hours, what am I going to need? I’m going to need to stay warm, I need a full tank of gas. I’m going to need snacks,” Derry said. “That preparedness component is important. There are a bunch of various small rural scenic cities, such as Eastern Hyack, with very limited resources. So if you crash, it’ll be several hours before someone comes to help you.”

Local News

safe place...
Bill Kaczaraba

Tacoma, Seattle businesses embrace ‘Safe Place Initiative’

It started with Seattle Police. Then Tacoma joined in. Now, local businesses and schools are embracing the Safe Place Initiative.
12 hours ago
robbery...
L.B. Gilbert

Man had gun held to head during robbery at Silverdale ATM 

Kitsap County Sheriff’s deputies arrested a man after he allegedly robbed someone at gunpoint in Silverdale Wednesday.
12 hours ago
FILE - A Boeing 737 Max jet prepares to land at Boeing Field following a test flight in Seattle, Se...
Associated Press

Boeing to be arraigned in court over two Max jet crashes

Boeing representatives and relatives of some of the passengers killed in two crashes of Boeing 737 Max jets will meet face-to-face in a Texas courtroom Thursday, where the aerospace giant will be arraigned on a criminal charge that it thought it had settled two years ago.
12 hours ago
tickets...
L.B. Gilbert

Courts resume late fees for Seattle parking, traffic tickets

Starting Jan. 30, late fees will resume on all tickets past due, after being suspended in March 2020 for the COVID-19 pandemic. 
12 hours ago
abortion Capital gains tax Olympia meeting legislature abortion...
Associated Press

Washington lawmakers hear testimony on 7 abortion bills

Abortion rights proposals have been front and center in Olympia, Washington, this week as state lawmakers heard hours of public testimony on seven proposals that would reinforce abortion access.
12 hours ago
Kohl-Welles...
Lisa Brooks

KC Councilmember Kohl-Welles won’t seek re-election in ‘next chapter’

After 30 years in office, King County Councilmember Jeanne Kohl-Welles announced she will not be seeking re-election this fall.
12 hours ago

Sponsored Articles

safety from crime...

As crime increases, our safety measures must too

It's easy to be accused of fearmongering regarding crime, but Seattle residents might have good reason to be concerned for their safety.
Comcast Ready for Business Fund...
Ilona Lohrey | President and CEO, GSBA

GSBA is closing the disparity gap with Ready for Business Fund

GSBA, Comcast, and other partners are working to address disparities in access to financial resources with the Ready for Business fund.
SHIBA WA...

Medicare open enrollment is here and SHIBA can help!

The SHIBA program – part of the Office of the Insurance Commissioner – is ready to help with your Medicare open enrollment decisions.
Lake Washington Windows...

Choosing Best Windows for Your Home

Lake Washington Windows and Doors is a local window dealer offering the exclusive Leak Armor installation.
Anacortes Christmas Tree...

Come one, come all! Food, Drink, and Coastal Christmas – Anacortes has it all!

Come celebrate Anacortes’ 11th annual Bier on the Pier! Bier on the Pier takes place on October 7th and 8th and features local ciders, food trucks and live music - not to mention the beautiful views of the Guemes Channel and backdrop of downtown Anacortes.
Swedish Cyberknife Treatment...

The revolutionary treatment of Swedish CyberKnife provides better quality of life for majority of patients

There are a wide variety of treatments options available for men with prostate cancer. One of the most technologically advanced treatment options in the Pacific Northwest is Stereotactic Body Radiation Therapy using the CyberKnife platform at Swedish Medical Center.
WSDOT: Drivers need to be prepared heading over the passes