PORTLAND, Ore. — With lows remaining in the 20’s overnight Friday and the possibility of snow on the way late Saturday and early Sunday, the people in charge of maintaining Portland’s roadways are on high alert.
“We've been paying close attention,” said Hannah Schafer, spokesperson for the city’s Bureau of Transportation. “We'll continue to pay close attention.”
In an interview Friday afternoon, she noted maintenance crews tasked with operating plows, salt trucks and other equipment had already been put on standby for the weekend.
“We are ready,” she said. “We dressed all our trucks up before we went on the holiday break. So all the trucks out in our yard are dressed with snowplows, salt spreaders… Our anti-icers are ready to go.”
Schafer said liquid de-icer has already been applied to several Portland roadways.
Salt will be laid down on designated routes if and when snow and ice arrives.
PBOT provides a map, detailing which streets receive which treatments.
“Those [routes] are really good for you to plan with if you need to travel,” Schafer said. “Of course, we ask you, if you don’t need to travel, please stay home. Enjoy the weather from your warm home, and let the roads be clear for folks who really do need to get around.”
Schafer confirmed the city will tow cars abandoned along the side of roadways, a last resort used by drivers stranded in past snow storms.
The agency has also confirmed it will ticket drivers for doing so.
Schafer added an easy way to avoid that problem is by using public transit during winter storms.
To that end, she had a request for Portlanders in general.
“Please go out there and shovel those sidewalks to make it easier for people,” she said. “No matter what type of mobility they have… Whether they're walking, in a wheelchair or using other mobility devices, that makes it a lot easier for folks to get to the bus stop and take the bus safely to where they need to go.”