HYAK, Wash. – The heavy storm has already closed both the Chinook and Cayuse mountain passes and more than a foot of snow is expected over Stevens and Snoqualmie passes.
Washington State Department of Transportation snowplow crews spent Monday afternoon circling I-90 trying to keep up with the snow. Extra crews had been alerted to help tackle the snow.
“We call in our extra help in as need,” said WSDOT's Mike Krahenbuhl. “We keep watching the weather and watch the storm and then call in people accordingly and ship people up from other shops.”
The whipping snow meant visibility on the freeway was extremely low at times.
Now that the winter season is in full swing on the mountain passes, WSDOT said every driver should be prepared before hitting the road.
“Have a full tank of gas, carry extra blankets and coats, whatever,” said Krahenbuhl. “You don’t know when you’re going to break down and get stranded for hours. It gets cold.”
The falling snow on Snoqualmie Pass is forecast to turn into rain Monday night and Tuesday morning, which should make for a big, slushy mess.
More snow is in the forecast through the week.