NORTH BEND, Wash. — The economic lifeline between eastern and western Washington is frozen, literally.
Truckers were forced to grind to a halt after Washington State Patrol troopers closed Snoqualmie Pass indefinitely.
The Washington State Department of Transportation said the weather at the summit is just too dangerous for anybody to be driving on the roads. That means truckers by the dozens are stuck near North Bend waiting out the weather.
Westbound Interstate 90 was closed from Ellensburg to North Bend Tuesday night. The eastbound lanes were closed by early Wednesday morning. More than 25,000 cars and trucks use the economic lifeline every day.
And I-90 remained closed over the pass Thursday morning.
That means headaches for truckers heading to Wenatchee or Seattle. Some said the closure is more than just an inconvenience, the delay could cost them big-time money.
“Time is money,” said Greg McNiff.
“It screws my schedule up,” said a trucker named Jay. “I was supposed to be there in about 2.5 hours on the other side of Washington.”
WSDOT said it knows the closure is a headache for truckers but the nasty winter weather has turned Snoqualmie Pass into an ice rink.
“Anytime you close down a major corridor it’s going to have a major impact on everyone,” said Justin Fujioka with WSDOT.
Fujioka said crews will assess the situation at the pass Thursday morning.
Meanwhile, many truckers said they would wait out the closure and hope for the best.