ODOT warns drivers about winter weather conditions at high elevations

ASHLAND, Ore. —The winter weather system moving in means drivers need to be more careful, especially at high elevations. ODOT says it has workers out Monday doing their part to help you get to your destination, but it also asks for you to do your part when driving, to drive safely.

ODOT is responsible for maintaining state highways. Spokesperson Gary Leaming tells us, ODOT typically has 30 people to handle the Ashland area. This year it has 15. Despite that, it’s staying ahead by focusing on I-5 and keeping traffic on Siskiyou Summit moving.

Leaming says a big concern for drivers Monday night is potential black ice on the roadway. That can be very dangerous for drivers. And with winter weather across the region, there are many spots where you need to drive carefully.

“Some of our main concerns are Hayes Hill south of Grants Pass that’s in a chain requirement for big trucks, and then of course, Siskiyou Summit is also always a concern,” said Leaming.

Drivers are urged to drive to the conditions. That means slow down, leave plenty of room between vehicles, and factor in extra time between destinations. Be prepared, have plenty of water, food, gas, and blankets in your vehicle.

Be sure to keep up with the latest road conditions, you can do that by visiting TripCheck in Oregon, or QuickMap in California.

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Jenna King is the 6pm and 11pm anchor for NBC5 News. Jenna is a Burbank, CA native. She graduated from the University of Oregon with a degree in Broadcast Journalism and a minor in Sports Business. During her time at Oregon she was part of the student-run television station, Duck TV. She also grew her passion for sports through her internship with the PAC 12 Network. When Jenna is not in the newsroom you can find her rooting for her hometown Dodgers, exploring the outdoors or binging on the latest Netflix release.
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