PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) – Hundreds of drivers were forced to abandon their vehicles on local highways and city streets last week after a record snowstorm dropped 10 inches of snow on the Portland area.

The sudden and unexpected snowfall quickly iced over most of Multnomah County’s roadways, gridlocking traffic and leaving commuters stranded as they headed home on the evening of Feb. 22.

Portland Bureau of Transportation spokesperson Dylan Rivera told KOIN 6 News that nearly 350 vehicles had to be towed as a result.

“There were 349 vehicles that we believe were requested to be towed by public agencies during the winter weather event,” Rivera said.

The City of Portland manages towing contracts for public agencies throughout Multnomah County, including PBOT parking enforcement, ODOT, TriMet, the Portland Police Bureau, Portland Parks and Recreation and the Multnomah County Sheriff’s Office.

Approximately 529 tows were requested by public agencies in Multnomah County between 4 p.m. on Feb. 22 and 9 a.m. on Feb. 27. However, roughly 180 of these tows were already requested prior to Wednesday’s snowfall.

A map of Portland and Multnomah County’s tow districts. (PBOT)

A complete list of tows requested by public agencies in each tow district between 4 p.m. on Feb. 22 and 9 a.m. on Feb. 27:

  • District 2: 148 
  • District 4: 27 
  • District 5: 90
  • District 6: 4 
  • District 7: 26 
  • District 8: 54 

Total: 349

The city temporarily waived all parking tickets associated with the storm and suspended the $270 citation usually given when vehicles are towed for blocking traffic. Yet, vehicle owners will still be responsible for charges administered by local tow companies.