Studded tires allowed in Washington from Nov. 1 to March 31; stud-free winter tire alternatives are legal year-round
OLYMPIA – All right stop, collaborate (with fellow travelers) and listen: because winter’s on its way with some snow and icy conditions. There’s nothing vanilla about how road crews prep for winter weather – including pre-treating and plowing – but the traveling public also can help by being prepared for changing driving conditions. And with or without a ’90s music playlist, the Washington State Department of Transportation has tips on how stay safe and keep everyone moving this wintertime.
“Many mountain pass closures, for example, are due to driver behavior, including going too fast for winter weather, inattentiveness or failing to have proper equipment like chains,” said WSDOT Maintenance Operations Manager James Morin. “We need everyone doing their part to help keep passes and roadways open and traffic moving. That includes planning their trips accordingly for weather and possible closures and staying up-to-date using WSDOT’s online tools.”
Check out WSDOT's winter driving web page for more tips and information. WSDOT also asks travelers to always "know before you go" and get the most up-to-date roadway information before heading out. I t’s also important for motorists to remember to slow down, increase their following distance and be alert for people using crosswalks or bike lanes, as they may be harder to see due to inclement weather.
Know before you go:
Winter preparations and improved staffing levels
Winter-specific training for highway maintenance workers is underway across the state as teams ramp up and begin staffing crews around-the-clock for winter storms. Staffing levels for the positions most directly involved in snow and ice work have improved since last winter thanks to ongoing recruitment and many maintenance teams have returned to pre-pandemic staffing. As in years past, crews will “swarm to the storm” and move available resources to most affected areas or priority routes during storms.
Despite increased hires, the national shortage of applicants with commercial driver’s licenses remains an issue for WSDOT and all state DOTs, and some shortages do remain in certain areas. WSDOT remains committed to recruitment and retention of road workers with CDLs, including paying for specialized training as well as the mechanics who keep trucks, plows and other equipment working. Visit www.wsdotjobs.com and search “highway maintenance worker” in the field bar for more information on permanent and seasonal openings.
Studded tires and other options
By law , studded tires are legal for use in Washington state only from Nov. 1 through March 31. This applies to all vehicles in Washington, even those traveling from other states, and no personal exemptions or waivers exist. Studded tires do not meet a posted chain requirement. Drivers still need to install chains over studded tires to proceed in areas posted for chains.
WSDOT estimates studded tires cause between $20 million and $29 million in pavement damage to state-owned asphalt and concrete roadways each year. Motorists are encouraged to visit a tire dealer to learn about options, including stud-free, winter tread traction tires. This aggressive tread tire is different than an all-season tire, is legal year-round and does not cause the same roadway damage as studded tires.
Chains and alternatives
All travelers are reminded to prepare for changing weather conditions and avoid a costly ticket by carrying chains or approved alternatives whenever crossing mountain passes. Failure to obey a tire chains sign can mean a ticket of up to $500. Special chain enforcement patrols by WSP will keep an eye on mountain passes this winter.
WSDOT also encourages travelers to practice installing chains before heading out to develop a familiarity before having to install in winter conditions. Any tire becomes a traction tire when chains are installed.
Although some vehicle manufacturers recommend against the use of tire chains for certain models, that doesn’t excuse travelers from state traction device laws. These requirements exist to help keep all traffic moving safely during extreme winter conditions. The Washington State Patrol provides a list of state-approved alternative traction devices on its vehicle equipment webpage under “traction tires.” These approved alternatives can be used when chains are required.
On 10/18/23, during an evening school event, a Cashmere High School student reported to the Principal that another 17 year old Cashmere High School student told her he was going to shoot up the school and that she would be the first person he shoots. Detectives from the Chelan County Sheriff’s Office responded and further investigation determined the student specifically said he would shoot up the school and gave specific details to how he would do it.
Later the same evening, a search warrant was obtained and served at the residence of the student in Cashmere. The student was arrested and booked into the Chelan County Juvenile Justice Center on charges of “Harassment Threats to Kill”, and “Threats to Bomb or Injure Property”.
The Sheriff’s Office has no reason to believe there are any additional threats to the safety to the
public or students at this time.
Hybrid in-person/virtual meeting takes place Oct. 17-18 in Olympia
OLYMPIA – The Oct. 17 and 18 meeting of the Washington State Transportation Commission in Olympia will include several presentations on the future of the state’s highway system. Topics include an expert panel discussing the implications of the growing backlog of road and bridge maintenance needs statewide as well as presentations about innovations for electrifying the trucking sector and supporting growing EV charging demands.
The public is welcome to attend the meeting, which takes place from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Tuesday, Oct. 17, and from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Wednesday, Oct. 18, at the Washington State Department of Transportation Headquarters Building, 310 Maple Park Ave. SE. The meeting will also be streamed live on TVW. Those wishing to participate virtually may register for the Tuesday and Wednesday sessions on the commission’s website. Virtual and in-person public comment is scheduled for 12:30 p.m. on Wednesday, Oct. 18. Written comments can also be submitted via email to
A highlight of the meeting will be an expert panel on Tuesday that will address the widening funding shortfall for the maintenance and preservation of roads and bridges statewide, estimated at $11 billion over the next decade. Ramifications for falling behind in maintaining Washington’s $200 billion transportation system include threats to safety and reliability as well as escalating costs of moving goods on degraded roads and bridges. The panel discussion starts at 9 a.m.
Also Tuesday, commissioners will discuss potential changes to rates for the express toll lanes on Interstate 405 and State Route 167 that could take effect in early 2024. They will also begin discussions around possible toll policy changes for the I-405/SR 167 corridor that would be implemented when the next section of the express toll lane system, between Bellevue and Renton, is complete, which is planned for summer 2025.
Other topics to be covered at the meeting include:
Electrifying the trucking sector: Commissioners on Tuesday will hear from WattEV, a company working to transform the heavy-duty transportation sector by creating truck charging infrastructure and expanding a fleet of electric heavy-duty vehicles.
Adding electric infrastructure to roadways: Also on Tuesday, the commission will hear from NextGen Highways, which advocates for building electric transmission lines in public right of way corridors to meet demand from the increasing number of electric cars and buildings.
Highway renaming: The commission on Wednesday will consider a request from the Legislature to rename State Route 411 the “Cowlitz County Deputy Sheriff Justin DeRosier Memorial Highway” in honor of the deputy, who was fatally shot while on duty in April 2019 in Kalama.
Regular Board Meeting
October 12, 2023, 4:10pm
Bumgarner Meeting Room, 142 Pedoi Street, Manson WA 98831
1. Call to Order
2. Flag Salute
3. Agenda Additions and Deletions
4. Public Comment
5. Approval of Minutes
a. September 14, 2023 Regular Meeting Minutes
6. Financial Review
a. Review Monthly Financial Report
b. Review and Approve Monthly Voucher
7. New Business
a. Pickleball facility proposal
b. 2024 preliminary budget planning
c. Hercules reservation system quote approval
d. Approval of new hires & wages
8. Old Business
i. Old Swim Hole development project
ii. Manson Bay Marina planning project
iii. Leffler Field soil remediation planning project
b. Director’s Report
Next Regular Meeting: 4:10pm on November 9, 2023 at 142 Pedoi Street, Manson WA, 98831 (unless otherwise posted).
HYAK – The Washington State Department of Transportation and contractor crews will close I-90 for approximately one hour starting at 5:45 p.m. on Tuesday, Oct. 3 and Thursday, Oct. 5. During rock blasting closures, eastbound travelers will be stopped at milepost 63 and westbound travelers will be stopped at exit 70 near Easton.
Rock blasting is scheduled to occur one to two times per week into the fall, one hour before sunset, and the closure will last up to one hour. This work is part of the major improvement project to widen I-90 from four to six lanes between the Cabin Creek interchange and the West Easton interchange.
WSDOT provides a variety of tools to help plan your trip over Snoqualmie Pass this summer:
On 9/26/23, at approximately 4:13 am, deputies responded to a report of a domestic disturbance in the 14000 block of Brae Burn Rd by Lake Wenatchee. Deputies spoke with the reporting party whom advised that during an argument, her boyfriend had shot at her dog (but missed) and held a gun to her neck and threatened her. She was able to get away and call law enforcement.
Due to the nature of the threats, and the alleged use of firearms, the Eastern Cascade SWAT Team responded. An arrest warrant was obtained for the male. As the SWAT team surrounded the residence, the male exited and was taken into custody without incident.
Due to the ongoing investigation, no names will be released at this time.
It is with deep disappointment and sadness to share that the 2023 Haunted Manson Haunted House Experience is canceled. All other Haunted Manson activities will continue as planned.
The haunted house has operated successfully for the past two years, following the guidelines originally given by Chelan County. Unfortunately, the Fire Marshal informed us of new guidelines for construction with only two weeks until opening night, making the Haunted House impossible to produce this year.
The guideline requiring that there is no cover on the "house," even something temporary like a tarp or having it raised off the bins, makes the operation of the Haunted House impossible.
Since darkness is a crucial element to many of the Haunted House's special effects, and we cannot protect it from the elements without cover, we are forced to cancel the Haunted House.
While this is a devastating blow to our hardworking group of volunteers and the Manson community, we have a great new event planned!
Mark your calendar for a Haunted Manson Block Party on Saturday, October 28th. This will include food trucks, vendors, a Pumpkin Walk for kids, a Zombie Dash, a DJ dance party, and a live auction happening in Downtown Manson.
HARVEST FEST WILL HAPPEN!
VALLEY MUSIC NIGHT
PICKING, PRESSING AND POTLUCK!
If the Orchard is not available for use because of a government shutdown, the plan is to pre-pick apples as we did in 2013, then make cider at 10 AM at the school, and potluck at 1 PM. Cider presses, bins, sieves, knives, a limited number of containers, everything needed for cider making will be provide; as will the chili, the fixings, and all that’s needed for the potluck as detailed in the flyer below.
Should the Golden West Visitors Center not be available, Poetry Night will be cancelled.
Every effort will be made to keep plans up to date in what is, at the moment, an unknown scenario. Your help will be needed with the pre-picking if we need to do so.