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Winter Weather Keeps ODOT Crews Busy

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NEAR ASHLAND, Ore. — As snow fell on I -5 Saturday morning near the border of Oregon and California, workers with the Oregon Department of Transportation were in full force making sure the roads were safe and clear for drivers.

“We’ve started pre-treating for the last couple days. In anticipation with these storms coming in,” said ODOT Transportation Manager Everett Carroll.

Carroll said his crews were well prepared when the snow started falling Saturday morning.

“We’re plowing and sanding and de-icing on the critical spots and we have snow down from mile post 11 all the way down into California,” said Carroll.

Carroll said as of Saturday afternoon there had been a few cars that had spun out, but there had not been any major accidents.¬†Carroll urges drivers to be prepared because the switch between requiring drivers to carry chains or to have them on their tires could happen at a moment’s notice.

“It could change within an hour, we could go to full chains within an hour or by the middle of tonight so just be prepared,” said Carroll.

A few gas stations at exit 14 in Ashland offer one last chance for commuters to by chains. Arco gas attendant Dylan Bloom said he has already seen some people come in looking for chains.

“We’re definitely prepared for a lot more people, we’re fully stocked on chains,” said Bloom.

Carroll said his crews will work through Saturday night to clear up any rough patches.

“We’re looking at status quo right now. I’m staffed 24/7, full shifts to deal with whatever mother nature throws at us,” said Carroll.