New Weather System Could Bring More Hazardous Driving, Avalanche Danger
Another weather system could lead to dangerous driving conditions in North Central Washington after a week of hazards on roadways.
An ice storm closed down I-90 Snoqualmie Pass for about 24-hours heading into Christmas Day, while U.S. 2 Stevens Pass was closed for most of four days during and after the holiday weekend.
WSDOT spokesperson Lauren Loebsack says their Avalanche Control Supervisor is concerned about more precipitation coming quickly.
"We're going to get more snow and moisture as the week goes on, and it's those layers and those temperature changes that can really create the conditions where we really need to watch out for snow slides and avalanche, and you have those areas of thick ice."
Driving has been especially hazardous so far this winter season, with mountain passes closing multiple times because of spinouts and crashes.
Snoqualmie Pass has been shut down no fewer than 13 times since October.
U.S. 97 Blewett Pass was shut down for several hours twice in two days because of jackknifed 18-wheelers.
Loebsack says mountain road closures can be caused by snow, ice and the threat of an avalanche or falling trees.
"There's a lot of things that can happen out there, and a lot of things that we keep our eye out for, and a lot of essentially, balls in the air when it comes to keeping the mountain passes open," Loebsack said. "Because it's not just what's on the road, but it's everything that could impact the road."
Loebsack said the weather pattern bringing a mix of snow and rain Thursday and Friday is a recipe for slick and unrelenting conditions.