ASHLAND, Ore. — A lot of snow and ice caused chain requirements Thursday afternoon, which forced drivers to stop and gear up before driving over the Siskiyou Summit. For much of the day, Interstate 5 south of Ashland has had chain requirements.
It’s still just rainy in Medford, but on Thursday afternoon, that rain turned into snow and slush heading south toward the Siskiyou Summit. Dozens of drivers were forced to pull over at Exit 14 on I-5 after reading about chain requirements.
One driver NewsWatch12 talked to said she was a student in Washington and still had six hours left to make it home for Christmas to see her family. Like many other drivers, she didn’t have chains. So, she stopped at the Texaco station right off that exit. Management there brought in extra workers to deal with the rush.
Workers say this afternoon has been triple the normal amount of business with people needing to buy chains or get them installed. More chain services were offered on Siskiyou Boulevard outside of Ashland. Traffic was not at a hault Thursday afternoon but trucks and cars had to take it easy both on siskiyou and I-5 for the chain inspections.
The requirements start at milepost 1 on I-5 north bound and at milepost 4 southbound. If heading south from Medford, drivers will hit snowy conditions, and ODOT crews say traction tires are not sufficient.