Most areas dodge freezing rain, Gorge still at risk

Most areas dodge freezing rain, Gorge still at risk »Play Video
The driver of a Washington Department of Transportation de-icing truck heads out early Wednesday morning.

PORTLAND, Ore. - After a long stretch of clear, cold days, changing weather conditions brought the threat of freezing rain to the region Wednesday morning but most areas outside of the Columbia River Gorge escaped any slick conditions.

"Although a Freezing Rain Advisory is still posted for the entire valley, temperatures continue to warm above freezing in most all of the metro area at this time," KATU Meteorologist  Rhonda Shelby said just before 9 a.m.

"The front has stalled on the coast and has not moved inland yet.  When light rain moves in after 11 a.m., some isolated areas south of Salem, near Eugene and east of Troutdale in the Gorge are still likely to see pockets of freezing rain. However, the rest of the area is out of danger," she added.

The coast will also see just rain.

The longer the rain holds off, the warmer temperatures will be when the moisture arrives, meaning most areas will get just plain old wet rain, Shelby said.

Light rain was appearing on VIPIR radar along the coast, near Eugene and outside the Portland area during the early-morning hours Wednesday but streets in the Portland area remained dry.

The National Weather Service issued a Freezing Rain Advisory for many Northwest Oregon counties areas west of Interstate 5. A Winter Weather Advisory is in effect for the Columbia River Gorge area.

The Oregon Department of Transportation also issued a warning to drivers to be alert for icy roads in the morning and crews have been laying down deicer for several days.

About 25 trucks sprayed the Portland area overnight, including in Vancouver, to help keep the roads clear of hazards.

The latest forecast shows high temperatures in the Portland area will be in the 40s as the week goes on, with lows in the upper 30s.