Travel conditions could turn from nice to naughty during Christmas rush

December 22, 2010

By Staff

NEW — 6 a.m. Dec. 22, 2010

Conditions on state highways could turn from nice to naughty in the days ahead as motorists pack the roads for Christmas travel.

The state Department of Transportation alerted drivers to potential delays. Because Christmas falls on a Saturday, the number of vehicles using Snoqualmie Pass could be more than normal.

The agency predicts the highest traffic congestion to occur on westbound Interstate 90 from 3-6 p.m. Sunday, the day after Christmas, and again Jan. 2.

Meteorologists forecast more wet weather and snow in the Cascades. Department of Transportation planners said equipment is ready for inclement conditions.

The agency urged holiday travelers to check travel alerts and mountain pass conditions, and also to pack tire chains and other winter weather supplies.

Expect longer-than-usual wait times at ferry docks and Canadian border crossings for most of the holiday weekend, too.

AAA predicts more than 92 million drivers on the road during the holiday season — or close to 3 percent increase in the number of drivers on the road for Christmas.

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