Rain not to blame for slowed morning commute

By Emily Gillespie, Columbian breaking news reporter

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Several fender benders in the area created some traffic problems during the morning commute in Clark County.

A collision reported shortly before 6 a.m. today on the southbound Interstate Bridge was cleared within a half hour of the incident, but traffic remained stop-and-go from the Interstate Bridge to Hazel Dell through 9 a.m.

Three collisions on state Highway 500 during the morning commute clogged the interstates, especially to Interstate 205, Washington State Patrol Trooper Will Finn said.

None of the collisions resulted in injuries, nor did they block traffic for an extended period of time, Finn said.

Today marked the first rain that stretched into the morning commute, with a tenth of an inch captured at Pearson Field Airport, but Finn said that most of the collisions were likely due to driver inattention.

Finn reminded drivers that the morning hours of darkness are lasting a little later as summer ends, so motorists should be preparing their vehicles for winter driving conditions.

“Check tire pressure and make sure to give a little more following distance,” he said. “It’s a gentle reminder that we live in the northwest and the rain is coming.”