Oregon deals with cold, icy conditions

December 04, 2013 05:47 pm

PORTLAND — The western cold snap has brought lower-than-usual temperatures and some icy conditions to Oregon, and it will likely get worse later this week.

Nighttime temperatures have been dropping below freezing in much of the state. Freeze and hard freeze warnings were out for the south coast, often the state's balmy spot.

The cold is expected to be followed by more hazardous weather in some areas as the week wears on.

In southern Oregon, snow is expected Thursday night and Friday morning, accumulating to 3 to 6 inches above 1,000 feet, less at lower elevations. The weather service said roads, including Interstate 5, will be slippery.

In central Oregon, significant snowfall can be expected on the eastern slopes of the Cascades beginning Thursday into early next week. The Weather Service said conditions aren't likely to be so severe farther east in the state.

A megaload of oil refinery equipment on a trip through eastern Oregon bound for western Canada was delayed at least a day by the winter weather.

In northwest Oregon, the Weather Service said dry, cold weather conditions would be followed by wetter conditions, including snow on the coast by the end of the workweek.

As the cold weather closed in on Portland early Wednesday, the Red Cross opened an emergency warming shelter for the homeless, and authorities said they were concerned about icy conditions on the bridges across the Willamette River, vital to city commuters. Police reported one vehicle overturned on the Hawthorne Bridge. There was no immediate report of injuries.

The cold fronts will bring some good news for skiers: in eastern Oregon, Anthony Lakes ski area announced it will open for the season Saturday.