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Icy roads could make driving treacherous

Motorists should carefully watch the weather forecast today, Thursday, Dec. 12, and consider staying off the road if an ice storm hits in Northwest Oregon.

The severity and location of freezing rain, if any, is uncertain. But ice on the road could create problems for travelers in Portland, the Willamette Valley, the Coast Range and the Columbia Gorge.

Should freezing rain develop, ODOT will hit the roads with its arsenal of tools to improve the road conditions — plows, sand and deicer.

Travelers need to stay up to date on the weather forecast and road conditions and practice safe driving. Here are some tips for travelers should an icy winter storm strike.

• No one can safely drive on ice. If roads get icy, consider not driving or delaying your trip until the weather warms and the ice thaws.

• If caught on an icy road, slow down, allow plenty of stopping distance in case you or the car ahead of you lose control and watch out for pedestrians and bicyclists because stopping distances are so much longer.

• ODOT sand trucks, plows and deicer trucks can’t clear roads clogged with traffic. The more traffic stays off the road, the quicker roads can be treated.

• Consider leaving the driving to the professionals and taking mass transit.

• Consider walking, working from home or taking the day off until the storm passes and the roads clear.

• Don’t abandon a vehicle in heavy traffic. Abandoned vehicles delay emergency responders, prevent plows and other maintenance equipment from getting through and delay traffic even further. Remain with your vehicle and call for help. If you leave your car, it will get towed.

• Driving on ice is never a safe choice. The safest thing to do is stay off the road.

Local Weather





Humidity: 86%

Wind: 0 mph

  • 20 Apr 2014

    Cloudy 64°F 48°F

  • 21 Apr 2014

    Few Showers 66°F 46°F