Forecasters: More snow is on the way for Issaquah

February 23, 2011

By Warren Kagarise

NEW — 7 a.m. Feb. 23, 2011

Issaquah roads remain clear and open Wednesday morning, as forecasters warned motorists to prepare for worsening conditions throughout the day.

City road crews toiled through the night to apply sand or de-icing fluid to streets. Crews focus on priority routes and then start to clear side streets as conditions allow.

In the meantime, roads remain open in Issaquah, though drivers should prepare for winter driving conditions, even on treated roads and especially at night.

National Weather Service forecasters in Seattle issued a winter storm warning for Western Washington through 10 a.m. Thursday.

Meteorologists predicted 1 to 3 inches of snow accumulation in Issaquah during the daytime Wednesday. The chance of precipitation is 90 percent. The temperature is expected to reach 39 degrees.

The mercury is expected to drop to 29 degrees Wednesday night. Meteorologists predicted another 1 to 3 inches could accumulate overnight Wednesday in Issaquah and the surrounding area.

The chance of snow continues through Thursday — especially before 4 p.m. — although accumulation is not expected to exceed a half-inch.

Julius Boehm Pool and the Issaquah Community Center remain open on regular schedules for Wednesday.

The conditions in the forecast for Wednesday could make for a treacherous afternoon commute.

Motorists can check up-to-the-minute road conditions on real-time traffic cameras installed throughout Issaquah.

King County Road Services Division planners track road conditions for roads in rural and unincorporated areas during inclement conditions.

If drivers must abandon vehicles along Issaquah streets, park clear of travel lanes to allow snow equipment to pass. (The city tows vehicles left abandoned in travel lanes. Call the Issaquah Police Department nonemergency line, 837-3200, to locate vehicles after a snowstorm.)

King County Metro Transit has warned bus riders to prepare for problematic commutes Wednesday. The snowstorm could cause morning, afternoon and evening trips to be disrupted, delayed, reduced or operate on snow routing.

Planners urged riders to check the winter weather website before traveling. Updates start at 4 a.m. each day.

The agency also encouraged residents to sign up for Transit Alerts to receive up-to-date information about snow operations.

If buses operate on snow routes, some streets and bus stops may be missed — and delays might occur — due to travel conditions. Metro Transit has updated snow routes from past years, so riders should check the updated routes.

The agency displays the service status of each area on a color-coded snow map:

  • Green indicates buses operating on normal routes.
  • Yellow indicates some, but not all, routes in the area operating on snow routes.
  • Red indicates all bus routes in a designated area operating on snow routes.

Buses do not always run on schedule in snowy or icy conditions. Plus, increased ridership during inclement weather can result in crowded buses and a longer-than-usual wait on the phone for the Customer Information Office.

Riders should dress warmly for the walk to the bus stop, expect delays and wear weather-appropriate footwear.

The agency also recommends for riders to head for bus stops on main arterials or at major transfer points, such as park-and-ride lots, transit facilities or shopping centers, and to wait at the top or bottom of hills, because buses cannot stop for passengers on inclines.

Sound Transit reminded riders to boost “snow-how” for riding mass transit in the days ahead.

Sound Transit riders should sign up to receive rider alert e-mails or text messages. Riders can receive routes for specific bus routes.

During snowstorms and the aftermath, Sound Transit keeps current rider alerts posted atop the agency website. Or call 888-889-6368 for up-to-date information.

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