PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — Officials are urging drivers to limit all non-essential travel when arctic air blasts the region on Thursday.
Driving conditions are expected to get dicey by Thursday afternoon. Find a breakdown of expected weather conditions and how they may affect travel below.
Around 1-2 p.m. on Thursday, the Portland metro area is predicted to start seeing snow showers. Despite snow accumulations being light, driving could become a challenge as road conditions turn slick.
At 4 p.m., a Winter Storm Warning will go into effect for the Portland area and last until 10 p.m. Friday.
By 7 p.m., freezing rain is expected to hit the area and create some spotty ice accumulations.
The storm won’t let up overnight, with freezing rain likely to continue into Friday morning. This will create icy and hazardous road conditions.
KOIN 6 meteorologist Kelley Bayern predicts there will be 0.2 to 0.4 inches of ice across the Portland metro through Friday. Check the graphic below for the potential ice impacts.
The Oregon Department of Transportation started preparing roadways ahead of the impending ice storm.
Upper elevations are always a concern during winter weather, but Don Hamilton from ODOT said they’re focused on lower elevations too.
Crews were reportedly out overnight de-icing major roadways throughout Portland and into the mountains. Hamilton said crews focused on de-icing all major highways in the area, including Sunset Highway and Interstate 205.
Although the winter storm is only forecasted to last a couple of days in the valley, ODOT is expecting issues in the Gorge through next week.
Crews will reportedly monitor Interstate 84 for any major safety concerns, which if present, could prompt closures on the interstate.
Watch the full interview with Don Hamilton in the video player below.