OLYMPIA – Winter weather and freezing temperatures forecasted for the Cascade mountains and most of eastern Washington are prompting Washington State Department of Transportation officials to extend the deadline to remove studded tires through April 17. Forecasts continue to indicate that nighttime temperatures in the mountains and higher elevations will hover around freezing through the weekend and into early next week.
Drivers must remove their studded tires by 12:01 a.m., Sunday April 18.
WSDOT is encouraging drivers in areas with milder temperatures to remove their studded tires as soon as possible and not wait until the April 17 deadline.
Washington State Patrol troopers enforce a $124 fine for those who use studded tires after the deadline. No one can guarantee ice and snow-free roadways, so WSDOT encourages drivers, especially those heading into the higher elevations, to plan ahead and drive for conditions.
On the WSDOT Winter Driving Web site (www.wsdot.wa.gov/winter), you can find ways to prepare for winter driving, winter driving tips, plus more about WSDOT's winter roadway operations, snow and ice removal and avalanche control.
WSDOT advises drivers to know before you go:
· Get information before you leave about traffic and roadway conditions, including the mountain passes, on our Web site at www.wsdot.wa.gov.
· 511 - This driver information phone line provides current traffic, incident and closure information. TTY users can call 1-800-833-6388. Out-of-state callers can access the information at 1-800-695-ROAD (7623).
· Sign up for and follow WSDOT news at www.wsdot.wa.gov/news. There you can sign up for WSDOT E-mail alerts, Twitter feeds, read the blog and see WSDOT photos on Flickr.
Know On the Road:
· Overhead and roadside electronic signs
· Highway advisory radio - WSDOT advises drivers to program 530AM and 1610AM on your radio.