Driving over mountain passes? Some winter driving tips

We are finally seeing some snow in the Cascade mountains which has resulted in intermittent closures of both Interstate 90 and U.S. Highway 2. You may be traveling across the passes to visit family, for work or to enjoy some skiing but it is important that you take some safety precautions before you travel. Our Washington car accident lawyers discuss some important tips to promote safe travel over Snoqualmie and Stevens passes.

Tips for Washington drivers for crossing mountain passes

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  1. Check the Washington State Department of Transportation (WSDOT) website before traveling over the mountain passes. The WSDOT website provides a pass report which includes driving restrictions, road conditions and live webcam views of the highway. It also includes information on construction delays.
  2. If the weather reports indicate that there is heavy snow on the passes, postpone your travel if possible. Often, the weather can change in a few hours providing you a better window in which to drive.
  3. Make sure your fuel tank is full before crossing the passes. Sometimes traffic will stop for snow removal or avalanche control or the pass may suddenly close due to an accident and you’ll want enough fuel to be able to run your heater and then continue on your journey once the pass is open again.
  4. Stock your car with blankets and snacks and water before crossing beginning journey in case the pass is closed for an extended time. Pack extra diapers for any infants or small children.
  5. Check your tire pressure and pack your chains if you do not have all-wheel drive.

Tips for driving on icy and snowy roads

  1. Slow down and drive for the current road conditions. Do not accelerate quickly.
  2. Turn on your headlights.
  3. Do not use cruise control.
  4. Give yourself plenty of stopping distance. Remember that even if you have an all-wheel driver or four-wheel drive, it still takes plenty of room to stop on ice.
  5. Leave room between your vehicle and other vehicles.
  6. Be extra cautious when driving over bridges, off ramps and at intersections.
  7. Resist the urge to pass a snowplow until you are absolutely sure it is safe.
  8. Watch for pedestrians and cars that are stopping for chain-up and chain-removal areas.


This information is provided by Washington Injury Attorney blog, a service of The Farber Law Group. We represent people who have been seriously injured in Washington car accidents and the family of those who have been killed.

Contact The Farber Law Group at 1-800-244-9087 or attorney@hgfarber.com to schedule a free and confidential case evaluation. Our Bellevue office is here to assist you.