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ODOT: Mountain passes dangerous, be prepared

The Oregon Department of Transportation is warning of snow and ice covered roads over the mountain passes this week and through the weekend.

Travelers should take precautions, ODOT says. People who are unprepared for mountain travel can jeopardize their safety and the safety of others on the road.

Here are some tip from ODOT to ensure everyone gets to where they are going safely:

Consider transit: The Mt. Hood Express provides service along Highway 26 from Sandy to Timberline Lodge. To learn about its rides and schedules, check www.mthoodexpress.com.

Dress for the weather: Dress in warm layers and limit exposed skin.

Drive for the conditions of the road: Adjust your speed to the road conditions.

Use chains and traction tires: When chains are required, use the next chain up area to put on your tire chains. Continuing to drive in the snowy conditions hoping the road will improve is not a safe idea. Neither is stopping in the middle of the highway to put on tire chains.

Chain up areas and highway shoulders are not playgrounds: Use designated parking areas and never use chain up areas or highway shoulders as a place to play in the snow.

Don’t park your vehicle along the highway: Parking in highway shoulders prevents plowing activities, limits access for emergency responders and creates a safety hazard. for other road users. Abandoned or parked vehicles along the highway will be towed.

Consider your travel time: Mountain passes see the highest number of vehicles on Sunday afternoon’s.

Know before you go: Visit TripCheck.com or calling 511. Here is a video about how TripCheck can help you: www.youtube.com/watch?v=O8JR_Je2hXk&list=UUoWTzYn2cCUt9nMVoE3cBrg.

For more information about winter travel visit: www.oregon.gov/ODOT/COMM/Pages/winterdriving.aspx.

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