Wednesday, February 23, 2011

It's Slick Out There, Slow Down

A multiple-car collision on the eastbound lanes of Interstate 90 at Division is blocking traffic, and a long backup is forming behind the accident scene. The right lane of traffic is moving slowly.

Another multiple-vehicle accident was reported about the same time at Pines Road and Montgomery Avenue. And to top it all off, I hit a car coming down the hill from Sacred Heart when a woman pulled out directly in front of me and I couldn't stop in time. It only left a tiny scratch on my 13-year-old car with almost 200,000 miles on it but dented in the rear quarter panel on her very new Honda. The good news is that it wasn't my fault. Fortunately.

The snow downtown (at least outside my office) has now quit, but the City just sent out an update on their snow removal/deicing efforts. Here are the highlights:

City of Spokane Street crews are working to de-ice and sand City streets as needed. Street officials have called in additional crews for the night shift on Wednesday and are prepared to switch to plowing once the snow begins to accumulate.

De-icing efforts today have focused on hills, bridges, and problem areas. Weather forecasts indicate that several inches of snow are likely within the City through Thursday, and cold temperatures will keep that snow from melting immediately.

A number of collisions already have been reported because of slick conditions. High wind gusts also may cause blowing and drifting snow and poor visibility for drivers.

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About SRTC

SRTC is the federally designated Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO) for Spokane County. Urbanized areas with populations exceeding 50,000 people are required to have an MPO. SRTC was formed to address the county's transportation planning needs. It provides coordination in planning between the public, cities, small towns, the county, the state, transit providers, and tribes.

SRTC offers services including transportation monitoring, transportation modeling, census information analysis, travel demand forecasting, historical traffic count analysis, geographic information systems, and trip generation rates.