While most are staying home, those who must travel should expect rain, snow, high winds and other winter weather creating challenging driving conditions over the next few days in parts of eastern Oregon.

Today’s National Weather Service announcement calls for:

  • Moderate snow accumulations through Tuesday evening.
  • 4-10 inches in the Blue Mountains. 2-6 inches in the Ochoco-John Day highlands (Winter Weather Advisory in effect).
  • Blowing dust possible this evening for areas in and around the Columbia Basin. Gusts 40-50 mph through this evening.
  • Patchy blowing and drifting snow in the mountains and valleys this evening. Gusts 20-30 mph.
  • Spring-like unsettled weather will continue through the week and into next weekend.

Travelers are advised to check road and weather conditions at TripCheck.com before hitting the road. Links to winter driving safety tips are also available on TripCheck under the “Road and Weather” tab at the top of the website. Just open the “Winter Travel” and “Winter Driving Safety” drop down menus where you’ll find helpful messages. Here are a few to keep in mind:

  • Be ready to use your chains. Be patient. Go slow.
  • Turn off cruise control. Never use cruise control in wet, icy, snowy or slippery conditions.
  • Expect a long commute that could last hours. You never know when weather or traffic incidents will cause the road to be closed for extended periods.
  • Along with snow and slick conditions, expect visibility to be limited.
  • Make sure your wipers, headlights, turn signals, heater, etc. are in good working order.
  • Keep fuel tank full (in case you get stuck in road closure).
  • Keep cell phone charged.
  • Avoid following GPS navigation directions onto remote or unfamiliar roadways if detoured off of the main highway. Many non-highway routes are not maintained during winter conditions.
  • Carry emergency supplies (water, food, warm clothes, flashlight, etc.)
  • Increase the following distance between you and the vehicle ahead of you.
  • Use extra caution and keep safety in mind when installing tire chains along the side of the roadway. Other drivers may not be able to see you clearly.
  • Drive according to conditions of the road, regardless of posted speed limits.
  • Keep a watch on weather conditions throughout the day in anticipation of the next storm, which could make current road conditions worse.
  • At the end of your trip, wash off your vehicle to remove mud, snow, road salt and deicer residue.

Know Before You Go: Call 5-1-1 or visit www.TripCheck.com for the latest real-time traffic updates and camera views of Oregon’s highways. Outside of Oregon, travelers can call 503-588-2941.