Icy Tuesday morning commute expected

NEWCASTLE, Wash. — Snow was falling in Newcastle Monday night — not a lot of snow, but flakes that were wet and heavy.

Not a big problem for drivers but most have heard that will change by morning.

“I think we need to be careful. We’ve had a lot of moisture and it’s going to freeze tonight and I think we need to be careful about it,” driver Eileen Zube said.

Newcastle SnowExperts agree we will all need to be extra careful during the Tuesday morning rush.

“The biggest thing is people need to be prepared. They need to make sure their cars are ready. They need to make sure they’re ready.  They need to check their routes and make sure they`re ready to get there and most of all allow plenty of time,” Washington State Department of Transportation spokesman Chris Johnson said.

Earlier in the day, WSDOT and local transportation agency were out in force staging personnel and heavy equipment like snow plows to make sure they are where they’re needed when they are needed.

WSDOT’s Traffic Management Center in Shoreline is the nerve center where all efforts are coordinated.

DOT cameras are monitored here, trouble spots are identified and crews are dispatched.

“We’ve got our maintenance crews out.  Our trucks are ready, plows ready and we’ve got our sand salt, we have our deicing material ready to go,” Johnson said.

Drivers are urged to make sure they are prepared and their vehicles, too. Then everyone just needs to watch out for each other.

“I’ve seen a lot of cars just slide off the side of the road and they really don’t know how to combat it when they’ve been going. Four-wheel drive,  I rely on it,” driver Elliott Wires said.

“I have special tires that handle the ice and snow.  They’re fabulous, not studded.  They’re fabulous,” Zube said.

“I think I will drive cautiously.  That’s pretty much what I’m planning for tomorrow morning,” another driver said.

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