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The original item was published from 12/6/2013 11:14:00 AM to 12/6/2013 11:17:13 AM.

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Posted on: December 5, 2013

[ARCHIVED] Eugene declares an ice-snow emergency - Drive Safely!

December 6, 2013

Eugene Public Works has declared an ice-snow emergency, effective immediately. Public Works opened its Emergency Command Center at 1820 Roosevelt Blvd. at 4:30 a.m. today in response to dry snow that blanketed the south end of the Willamette Valley overnight.

During ice-snow emergencies, on-street parking on priority transportation routes is banned. For a map of those streets, please see www.eugene-or.gov/snow. The ban allows emergency vehicles and snow-removal equipment to travel safely on roadways to respond to emergency situations. Last night, crews de-iced these roadways and they are currently plowing and sanding.

People are advised to drive cautiously. Roads are described as "messy," and the potential for trees and power lines to create dangerous situations. Roads are expected to be icy through the weekend. Traction devices are recommended.

The leaf collection is temporarily suspended and Public Works anticipates being back on schedule December 9.

Property owners are responsible for maintaining sidewalks abutting their properties.

A full description of ice-snow priority routes can be viewed at eugene-or.gov/snow. Also, the public may call 541.682.4800 to report hazards.

So far, today between 4:00 a.m. and 10:30 a.m. there have been 32 traffic crashes in Eugene. Please drive safely. Especially add plenty of driving distance between you and other vehicles.

Cold or rainy weather driving tips

• If it is icy out and you don't have to travel, stay home• Slow down
• Leave plenty of driving distance, don't accelerate quickly and don't brake abruptly• Drive defensively and cautiously – your eyes should be looking ahead and down the road so you can see conditions and traffic and will be able to react appropriately and calmly
• Even if you have a green light, check to see you are safe proceeding through the intersection. There may be vehicles sliding into the intersection, without the ability to stop due to road conditions and unsafe driving • If you have an outside temperature gauge in your car, check it from time to time (These gauges are inexpensive and available at stores locally)
• Drive as though you can't rely on your brakes• Be aware that road conditions can change quickly as the temperature drops
• The surface on overpasses and bridges freeze faster so be cautious• Remove all ice on windshields, windows, headlights and tail lights prior to driving to ensure adequate visibility, and make sure the vehicle’s windshield is defrosted
• Carry chains or traction devices if it is going to snow• Check your tire pressure. It should be at least at the level recommended by the manufacturer. As the temperature drops, so does tire pressure
• Turn headlights on• If you crash, carefully evaluate the situation from inside your vehicle. Don't immediately get out because it is possible other vehicles might also be crashing near you. Don't stand between moving traffic and your vehicle. Use a flare, hazard lights or other signaling device to warn other drivers of the crash
• Four-wheel drive vehicles and all-wheel drive vehicles are great at accelerating, but in snow or ice that doesn't help you stop or turn. • Don’t use cruise control in freezing, near freezing, or rainy conditions. The powered wheels can lose traction. In freezing weather, be especially careful on overpasses and bridges.

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