Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Know before you go...

I always like to check the cameras and traffic conditions before I travel. It's nice to know if I need to delay my trip or plan to leave earlier. I put together some of my favorite places to use on our Web site to help you plan your trip.

For real time conditions:

I-90
Recently, some innovative transportation engineers added a few more cameras on I-90 so that you can get a better view of what traffic is like. They have this really cool trailer they call a "portable work zone" that has a computerized variable message sign and a camera on it that can send images to the Web site. For the holiday weekend, this portable work zone will be sitting near Cle Ellum, then moved to the Easton bridge Nov. 26th, once the work starts there. Check out the temporary cameras...

If you are traveling with your family over any of the passes, take the time to prepare and drive safely. It's worth it.

How about U.S. 2?
Another permanent camera also was added on U.S. 2 at Stevens Pass so now you can see both the east and west side of the pass .

Planning to travel to Canada?
For value, you can't beat the border traffic page. For the low cost of nothing you’ll find wait times, just underneath the map, letting you know how long it might take to cross the border. Now how much would you pay?

Want to plan ahead?
Knowing in advance the best time to leave is such a great way to have a less stressful trip. If you haven't seen them yet, I highly recommend checking out the travel graphs that were created for some key areas in the state:

I-90 over Snoqualmie Pass
US 2 over Stevens Pass
I-5 south of Olympia
I-5 near the U.S-Canada border

Our forward-thinking traffic engineers have already started doing some work to show how the current traffic patterns are matching up to what we predicted, and they are incredibly close -- almost an exact match.

If you have a cell phone, try calling 5-1-1. It’s a great way to get traffic conditions, weather and more. My second favorite thing to check is the mobile traffic site. You can get Seattle traffic, ferry schedule info, and mountain pass reports by pointing your mobile browser to www.wsdot.wa.gov/small/.

WSDOT crews will be on staff all weekend to make sure we can keep you informed of what might affect your travels during the holiday weekend.

As always, pack your patience, plan ahead, leave plenty of room for stopping, and drive safely out there.