PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — More than a day after a historic snowstorm rocked Portland, Transportation Commissioner Mingus Mapps says PBOT crews have been working around the clock to keep roads clear, despite facing their own challenges.

As crews head into their second 12-hour shift in two days, the aftermath of the storm could be seen, with empty cars littering the shoulders of both major and minor roads.

“I think this is the most snow the city has seen in 24 hours, in I think about 50 years,” Mapps said. “We’ve plowed or treated about a third of the city, we’ve still got more work to do but we’re making incredible progress. I’ll tell you, one of the real challenges for us right now are the cars that have been left about in the streets.”

Former truck driver Vern Breece says he was on his way home to Killingsworth when he and several other cars got trapped behind a tanker truck off I-205 on the north 23B ramp.

“I can understand it, I drove a truck for 16 years cross country. I’d go and I could hit all three weather in just one trip, and I never had anything like this,” he said. “Why a truck driver, who ought to have more common sense? He should have pulled over back here, that way people could have gotten around him with no problem. Of course, these buses are just as bad. I don’t know how many I passed up today.”

From I-205 to 82nd and Sandy, throughout NE Portland, major thoroughfares became a dumping ground for large vehicles, most left overnight.

Breece said both drivers and the city should have been more prepared.

“They knew this and yet they didn’t put any change on that one might get sick. But yeah, they knew all about this. They could have put down that de-icer and these guys should have been able to go right on around,” he said.

Commissioner Mapps echoed those same sentiments. He says, as a policymaker, he’s learned a lesson from yesterday’s gridlock during this perfect storm.

“One of the lessons that I’ve taken away from yesterday is I wish I had been more proactive in sending city workers home earlier. I think we did that probably around 3 p.m. or so and should have done that earlier in the day. Just encouraging folks, from businesses to the school districts to maybe try to get your people and your kids home safe,” he said.