PBOT crews load road salt into a truck equipped with a Salt Dogg spreader that can hold almost five tons of road salt. Photo by Dylan Rivera, Portland Bureau of Transportation.
(Feb. 23, 2018) Portland Bureau of Transportation crews applied about 30 tons of road salt and 10,000 gallons of de-icer on Thursday night and Friday morning, in advance of the forecast for Friday evening snow. Crews also sprayed about 300 gallons of liquid magnesium chloride de-icer during the day on Friday.
The US National Weather Service Portland Oregon has forecast a trace to 1 inch of snow for Portland from 7 to 10pm tonight, with snow expected to accumulate only on streets above 500 feet. Snow in most of the city is expected to only stick to grassy areas, not streets.
The bureau will have extra crews on city streets above 500 feet in NW and SW Portland as well as Mt Scott in East Portland. Crews will re-apply de-icer and road salt. Crews will also have snow plows patrolling areas above 500 feet.
This week, PBOT has been using a road salt product called Ice Kicker. Unlike table salt, Ice Kicker has anti-corrosive properties that reduce the risk of causing rust on vehicles and infrastructure. The manufacturer adds blue dye, which makes it visible to the public and city crews. PBOT uses only about 200 pounds per lane mile, a low rate of application that further reduces the chances of harm to vegetation and property. PBOT spread about 140 tons of road salt earlier this week. The salt appears to have helped keep many key routes open, including Germantown Road, a notorious trouble spot that has been safe for travel all week.
Winter weather can vary across the city based on elevation, micro-climates, timing and more. Maintenance crews will be watching the forecast closely and making adjustments to their response, if necessary.
The public is advised to monitor the weather at their homes and at their travel destinations as road conditions could vary throughout the city. Use PBOT's Winter Weather Center to view conditions across the city using State and City operated traffic cameras at www.portlandoregon.gov/winter.
The City of Portland’s Snow and Ice Plan discourages private vehicle use and encourages public transit use instead. Plan ahead for your public transit commute by calling 503-238-RIDE (7433), visiting TriMet.org for bus and MAX light rail schedules and alerts or PortlandStreetcar.org for streetcar schedules and alerts. In snow and ice, plan for bus delays of 20 to 30 minutes. Know where your transit stops are before venturing out. PBOT provides tips for winter travel for people walking, biking or driving. Learn more at: https://www.portlandoregon.gov/transportation/snow
Check www.PublicAlerts.org for breaking news and information on major service disruptions. Visit http://bit.ly/snowicepdx to learn more about how PBOT responds to snow and ice events in Portland.