Lynnwood residents woke up Saturday morning to a heavy blanket of snow covering much of the city, prompting local officials to encourage community members to stay off of roads as more snow is in the forecast for the weekend.
According to National Weather Service snowfall data, the east Lynnwood area — as of 7 a.m. Saturday — received roughly 5.6 inches. Edmonds counted 6.2 inches and 5.5 was reported in the Mountlake Terrace/Brier area.
In Lynnwood, public works crews have six plows clearing priority roads (a map of the city’s priority routes can be found here) in staggered shifts to provide 24-hour service, said city spokesperson Julie Moore.
“Generally, we ask folks to use extreme caution if they have to drive,” she said. “Stay home if you can and please give our crews and equipment space to work.”
Moore also advised sledders to keep off of roads and to instead find a nice hilly area away from vehicles.
Lynnwood police are also encouraging residents to be safe while navigating roads during snowy weather. Though no major vehicle collisions have been reported, Lynnwood Police Department spokesperson Joanna Small said many vehicles are getting high-centered (when a vehicle gets stuck on something and the wheels are lifted off of the ground.)
“(High-centering) would usually happen on a concrete median,” she said.
Additionally, Small said officers are also reminding people that walking on roadways — like Highway 99 — is dangerous and should be avoided.
Unlike previous years, the snowfall will have little impact on Edmonds School District student learning since it coincides with regularly scheduled no-school days. On Friday, the Edmonds School District sent out a reminder via social media schools would be closed Feb. 15-16 for President’s Day and a day previously designated a non-learning day, said district spokesperson Harmony Weinberg.
“Those were regularly scheduled no-school days,” she said.
For unincorporated areas, the Snohomish County Road Maintenance crews began clearing roads Friday night. In a statement, the county reported 1,960 miles of roads throughout the county have been cleared and 375 tons of sand, 372 tons of sand/salt mix and 14,526 gallons of anti-icer have been used. Crews will also continue to plow, sand and deice until temperatures rise and conditions return to normal.
The county also provides advice for those traveling during the day. Before leaving the house or during a snow or ice event, officials said it is “highly recommended” that commuters check their travel routes and options. Additional tips before heading out into the snow include:
During snow/ice weather events, it’s also important to:
- Know who to call and when:
- Life-threatening emergencies, call 911.
- Non-life threatening emergencies: 425-407-3999
- Snohomish County Road closure/plowing: 425-388-7500
- Work requests for road plowing will be recorded but will not impact the priority listing during snow and ice events.
- Give snowplows and deicer equipment plenty of room to work. Allow for a minimum following distance of 200 feet.
- If passing, take extreme caution and beware of the displaced snow and ice, or sand spray.
- Vehicles parked along all major arterials and emergency routes must be moved off the street. Those vehicles left in the travel lane of a roadway and blocking traffic may be towed at the owner’s expense. It is recommended for vehicles to be moved when snow is in the forecast. Parking vehicles in the driveway and off the road helps the snowplows finish routes more quickly and efficiently.
- Residents clearing driveways and snow berms are advised to pile the snow to the left side facing their house, especially closer to the road. This prevents the snowplow blade from pushing the material back into the driveway. Throwing snow onto the road creates obstructions in the roadway and can be hazardous.
- Keep drainage inlets near homes clear of leaves and debris during the winter months to help reduce the chance of flooding.
- Try to keep garbage bins and other obstacles out of the street when the roads are icy or covered with snow.
- Obey road closed signs.
- Be sure to have vehicles mechanically prepared for cold weather. Have tire chains or traction tires readily available.
- Keep food, water and medical supplies in homes that will last at least one week. Pay attention to weather reports and plan ahead for even longer periods of time.
Those in unincorporated Snohomish County can visit the Public Works Snow and Ice webpage for road closure information and more. Follow the Department of Emergency Management and Snohomish County on Twitter and like Snohomish County on Facebook for the most up-to-date information during an event.
–By Cody Sexton