ODOT: Prepare for winter driving conditions this weekend, especially on the Cols des Cascades

SALEM, Ore. (KTVZ) — Travelers heading to high-altitude areas and the Cascade Passes in central and southwestern Oregon this weekend should be winter-ready, ODOT said Wednesday. .

The National Weather Service’s forecast predicts that low temperatures and rain will bring several inches of snow to upper areas of the Cascades and rise above 4,000 feet between Friday and Monday. Travelers should be prepared for wet and snowy conditions during the day and icy conditions early in the morning.

Jeremiah Griffin, ODOT district manager, says higher temperatures at lower elevations can be misleading.

“It can be hot at the start of your trip, but as you head into or over the mountains the temperatures drop and conditions can change quickly,” Griffin said. “Prepare before you go and be ready to adapt to changing road conditions.”

ODOT road crews are prepared for snow and work constantly to keep the roads clear, but they can’t be everywhere at once.

To prepare for winter driving:

  • Carry tire chains in your vehicle and practice putting them on.
  • Inspect your vehicle. Make sure the tires have good tread and the wipers are clean and in good condition.
  • Make sure your car’s heater and defroster are working properly.
  • Pack warm clothes, extra snacks and water, and any medications you may need in case you are late.
  • Check Tripcheck.com for up-to-date road conditions along your route.

On the road, drivers need to slow down, give more space to other vehicles and drive according to conditions. If you are using GPS navigation, check its route. Some GPS systems may take you down unmaintained back roads. Be careful and stay on the main roads.

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