Roads icy today as weather turns cold

Schools closed; many businesses reopen

By Craig Brown, Columbian Managing Editor



Biggest Recorded Vancouver Snowfalls

Date - Inches of snow

January-Feb. 1916 - 20.9

January-Feb. 1919 - 19.2

December 1919 - 18.3

January 1943 - 16

January 1950 - 13

December 2008 - 12 to 13

January 1930 - 12.7

JANUARY 2017 - 12.5

February 1923 - 11.7

SOURCE: Columbian archives

More information

Looking for more information about road conditions, closures or other information regarding the weather?

• Check Washington highway conditions and view live webcams

• Check Oregon road conditions and view live webcams

• Check or report Clark Public Utilities power outages

• National Weather Service forecasts and updates

• Portland International Airport flight delays, cancellations

• Need a break? Caribbean Princess webcam

Icy ruts created by Tuesday night’s snowstorm were everywhere on Clark County roads today as cold temperatures settled in overnight. Little improvement is expected today.

The temperature at Vancouver’s Pearson Field was 25 degrees just before 6  a.m. today, and the high was predicted to be only about 33 degrees.

Still, a community that basically took Wednesday off seemed poised to give Thursday a try. Banks, medical offices and businesses were reopening, though a few are still closed. Clark County government offices are opening at noon today.

The Oregon Zoo and the Ridgefield National Wildlife Refuge closed today due to the inclement weather.

There weren’t many crashes yet reported on Clark County roads by 7 a.m., according to emergency dispatchers.

Washington State Patrol Trooper Will Finn said that there were a few spin outs and 12 crashes reported between 3 p.m. Wednesday and 8 a.m. today. None involved injuries.

However, traffic jams to and in Portland are a possibility.

The prominent exception was local schools and colleges, virtually all of which are closed today. Waste Connections has suspended garbage and recycling collection; residents can put out twice the regular amount on their next normal collection day.

At 6 a.m. the city of Vancouver reported that drivers who venture out can expect mostly a hard snow base or slushy conditions on major streets. The east side of Vancouver, which was subject to the strong winds Tuesday when the snowfall began, appears to have fared slightly better in this current wintry weather event. Devine Road, from East Mill Plain Boulevard to East 18th Street, and Four Seasons Lane, between Northeast 18th and 23rd streets, were the only major streets closed as of 4 a.m. today.

Clark County Public Works reported Northwest Allen Canyon Road, from Northwest 51st Street to Northwest 324th Street, was closed earlier this morning.

Unlike Wednesday, there were few other apparent problems this morning with things like electrical power. Clark Public Utilities reported a handful of outages affecting perhaps a dozen customers.

Printed editions of The Columbian are not being delivered today; the e-edition of the paper is available free to anyone today, as is all content on the website. Print customers will receive the Wednesday and Thursday papers with the Friday newspaper.

With a foot of snow remaining on the ground, the worst road today is probably the street in front of your home. Freeways are clearer, but everything is frozen, and the traffic is slow. Spinouts are possible, and frozen ruts can steer your car in the wrong direction.

Motorists were cautioned to watch for pedestrians walking in the road and inattentive children.

The bus is an alternative. C-Tran said in a bulletin that “Express Routes 105, 134 and 199 will provide service only to the MAX railhead at Delta Park. Route 164 will serve the MAX railhead at Parkrose.
– Routes 157, 177, 190 and all Connectors will be suspended for the day.
– Routes 2, 6, 9, 19, 32 and 47 will begin the day on snow routes.
– C-VAN will be on red alert, meaning only life-sustaining trips will be served.
– The Vine will be served by regular 40-foot buses. Vehicles will stop at the nearest safe location adjacent to Vine stations.”

Friday is forecast to be a repeat of today; daytime highs will be warmer Saturday and Sunday, and rain is forecast to return next week.