The Oregon Department of Transportation lifted vehicle restrictions that were in place for travelers on OR204 (Weston-Elgin/Tollgate Highway). A single-lane work zone along the flood-damaged section between MP 26.7 at Andes Prairie and MP 37.4 at Summerville Road prompted the restrictions. Pilot cars are escorting traffic through this area with anticipated delays of 30 minutes to two hours, depending on weather conditions and construction activities.
Commercial truck restrictions were lifted Wednesday afternoon. Pilot car operations will still continue with extended delays.
If chain requirements are in effect in the work zone, vehicles will be required to install chains prior to entering the 11-mile-long work zone and will be required to keep their chains on through the entire zone (there is no room in this area for chain install or removal). If drivers in the pilot line were to stop to install or remove chains within the work zone it will cause extremely long wait times at each end of the work zone.
Motorists are reminded to plan extra travel time and be prepared for long delays as crews work to stabilize the road and prevent further damage. The pilot car operation is complicated by snow removal activities, contractor repair work, and a steep highway grade adjacent to Little Phillips Creek. Road rebuilding efforts will take place as soon as weather conditions improve. Due to heavy snow and other challenges along this highway mountain pass, the impacted section is not expected to open to normal two-lane travel until late spring or early summer.