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Studded tire season extended through April 4

A $190 fine faces drivers who leave snow tires on

The Oregon Department of Transportation has extended the 2010-11 studded tire season through Monday, April 4.

Weather forecasts call for continued difficult driving conditions in some snow zones over the coming weekend, officials said. Motorists should have studded tires removed from their vehicles by 12:01 a.m. Tuesday, April 5.

ODOT encourages drivers to consider other types of traction tires or chains because studded tires cause at least $40 million damage each year on city streets, county roads and state highways. About $11 million is spent each year repairing studded tire damage.

Tires that meet Rubber Manufacturers Association standards for use in severe snow conditions are available, and research shows these tires provide better traction than studded tires when used on bare pavement, officials noted.

Drivers with studded tires on their vehicles in Oregon after the deadline can be charged with a Class C traffic violation, which currently carries a minimum $190 fine.