wsdot logoHYAK – Construction-related delays return to Interstate 90 east of Snoqualmie Pass starting next week. Drivers need to plan for added travel time.

On Monday, April 17 through Friday, April 20 drivers will experience delays associated with intermittent rolling slowdowns during the day just east of the Snoqualmie Pass summit along Keechelus Lake. Drivers will also see delays in both directions due to single lane closures near Cle Elum.

The RV dumpsite located at the eastbound Indian John Rest Area will be closed to traffic on Monday, April 17 until Thursday, April 20 for maintenance repairs. The rest area will remain open.

Maintenance work along the shoulders on I-90 could cause minor delays for drivers during the day on Thursday, April 20 at the westbound I-90 off ramp at Exit 110, the eastbound I-90 off ramp at Exit 106 and the westbound and eastbound I-90 off ramp at Exit 101.

WSDOT provides a variety of tools to help plan your trip over Snoqualmie Pass:

  • Receive text message alerts about closures and delays by texting the number 468311 with the words "WSDOT Snoqualmie"
  • Snoqualmie Mountain Pass Web page for real-time travel information and to view traffic cameras.
  • Check the weekly Construction Updates and Traffic pages for region-wide updates.
  • Tune into the Highway Advisory Radio at 1610 AM and 530 AM.
  • Follow us on Twitter @snoqualmiepass.
  • Call the I-90 construction hotline at 888-535-0738 or 511.
  • Download WSDOT’s free smartphone app to check statewide pass conditions.

wsdot logoDrivers need to plan for delays, slow down and pay attention through work zones

HYAK – It’s been a very long winter on Interstate 90 over Snoqualmie Pass, but now it’s time for drivers to switch gears from driving in winter conditions, to driving through construction work zones.

A number of road-improvement projects will cause delays for drivers this spring and summer while the Washington State Department of Transportation and contractor crews add lanes, build and repair bridges and fix cracked sections of pavement between North Bend and Ellensburg.

“This year there will be multiple projects along I-90, which means drivers need to be prepared for slow downs and plan for a longer trip,” said Todd Trepanier, WSDOT regional administrator. “Please stay attentive and be patient while driving between North Bend and Ellensburg.”

Next week crews will resume work on the I-90 Snoqulamie Pass East project that builds a wider, safer and more reliable stretch of I-90 from Hyak to Keechelus Dam and from Keechelus Dam to the Stampede Pass interchange. Later this summer, crews will resume blasting along the rock slopes east of Snoqualmie Pass. Drivers need to plan for hour-long closures, during the week starting an hour before sunset.

Crews will also resume work next week to replace deteriorating sections of the westbound lanes between Cle Elum and the Elk Heights area. As part of the work, the westbound Indian John Rest Area will need to be closed periodically during the week starting in late May and continuing throughout the summer.

In May, crews will start replacing deteriorating sections of concrete pavement panels in the eastbound lanes and repairing bridge decks in the westbound lanes between North Bend and the Snoqualmie Pass summit. Drivers will experience delays as traffic is detoured around the work zone. Crews will also be making repairs to bridge decks between Easton and Ellensburg.

WSDOT has a wide variety of resources to help drivers plan their trips across I-90 this summer. Drivers can find information on multiple websites, including the What’s Happening on I-90, Snoqualmie Mountain Pass and Traffic Alerts pages. Drivers can also follow us on Twitter @snoqualmiepass and @wsdot_east or sign up for email updates or subscribe to our text message alerts by sending the phrase “WSDOT Snoqualmie” to the number 468311.

wsdot logoCrews working to improve nighttime visibility

HYAK – Efforts to improve visibility on Interstate 90 east of Snoqualmie Pass continue this week as crews work to install solar-powered LED lane markers, which will require nighttime closures of the westbound lanes this week. 

The Washington State Department of Transportation will close the westbound lanes of I-90 at 10 p.m. Wednesday night, April 5 until 5 a.m. Thursday morning, April 6 and again at 10 p.m. Thursday night, April 6 until 5 a.m. Friday morning, April 7. Westbound traffic will be stopped at milepost 62 near the Stampede Pass Interchange and will reopen every two hours to clear traffic. Eastbound traffic will not be impacted. Follow @SnoqualmiePass on Twitter and check the mountain passes web page for updates.

April 2 plane crash

OLYMPIA – Two individuals were rescued from a downed aircraft in the Olympic National Park this evening near Mt Jupiter and have been airlifted for medical treatment.

The Cirrus SR22 aircraft went down in the snow covered wilderness and search and rescue officials were alerted at 3:48 p.m. Sunday, April 2, when the plane's Emergency Locator Transmitter activated.

The signal was detected by satellites and the distress message was forwarded to the Air Force Rescue Coordination Center at Tydall Air Force Base in Florida, who alerted the Washington State Department of Transportation.  The occupants of the aircraft were also able to alert overflying commercial aircraft on the emergency frequency.

Search and Rescue personnel from Naval Air Station Whidbey Island Search and Rescue were able to locate the wreckage with the help of a search aircraft from Washington Air Search and Rescue, who tracked the distress beacon's signal. The Navy crew then lowered rescuers to the ground to locate, access and hoist the downed flyers up and onto the rescue helicopter and transport them to Harborview Medical Center in Seattle. Exact details about their injuries are not available at this time, but they were described as minor and not believed to be life threatening.

At this time we still do not have the names of the pilot and passenger or know what the purpose of the flight. The Federal Aviation Administration and National Transportation Safety Board are already mobilized and will begin their investigation to try and determine what caused the plane to go down.

wash traf safePassenger ferry service, transportation planning efforts and road usage charges to be discussed

OLYMPIA – Developments in passenger ferry service and long-range transportation plan updates are among the topics before the State Transportation Commission next week in Olympia.

The meeting starts at 9 a.m. Tuesday and Wednesday, March 21 and 22, at the Transportation Building, 310 Maple Park Ave. SE, on the Capitol Campus in Olympia. This meeting is open to the public and persons wishing to speak to the commission may do so during the public comment period at 4:45 p.m. Tuesday, and at 11:30 a.m. Wednesday.

Tuesday morning the Washington State Department of Transportation will report on progress for construction and planning to complete expansion of the State Route 520 corridor from Lake Washington to Interstate 5. The commission will then discuss recruitment and public outreach strategies to enroll 2,000 volunteers for a pilot project that begins later this year to evaluate how a road usage charge might work. In light of the growing fuel efficiency of new vehicles, the pilot project will let Washington drivers test the concept of road usage charging as a potential replacement to the gas tax and shape how it could work.

Afternoon briefings include updates on the transportation plan for the Central Puget Sound region and WSDOT’s implementation plan for WTP 2035, the state’s long-range transportation plan. The Puget Sound Regional Council’s update to its Transportation 2040 plan does not anticipate significant changes to the current plan but will address climate change, financial strategies and performance measures. A presentation on the Main Street Program will highlight how 34 cities in the state participate in a unique preservation-based economic development tool that enables communities to revitalize downtown and neighborhood business districts. Active transportation is a common element in Main Street success, helping to leveraging local historic, cultural and architectural resources for downtown economic vitality.

The meeting continues Wednesday morning with presentations on the past and future of passenger ferry service in Puget Sound, in particular Kitsap Transit’s offering of new passenger ferry service from Bremerton to Seattle, starting in July. Other topics on Wednesday address the freight-and-goods movement research underway at the University of Washington Supply Chain and Transportation Logistics Center, and a proposal under legislative consideration to study the feasibility of ultra high-speed rail transportation between Portland, Oregon, and Vancouver, B.C.

 

For more information about the commission and a complete meeting agenda, visit: www.wstc.wa.gov/