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Stuck drivers line up in North Bend, wait for snowbound Snoqualmie Pass to reopen

Truck driver Kraig Kinnear, right, talks with a fellow driver while waiting for traffic over Snoqualmie Pass to resume Monday. Hundreds of vehicles lined up at North Bend
Truck driver Kraig Kinnear, right, talks with a fellow driver while waiting for traffic over Snoqualmie Pass to resume Monday. Hundreds of vehicles lined up at North Bend's exit 35 during a snow closure expected to last several hours.
— image credit: Carol Ladwig/Staff Photo

Trucks backed up for miles around North Bend Monday afternoon, Feb. 28, when heavy snow and a slide prompted the closure of Interstate 90 between Ellensburg and North Bend.

Tanner Road, eastbound I-90, and offramps from both directions were all turned into parking lots while DOT crews worked on clearing the slide in the westbound lanes, and heavy snow prohibited travel in all lanes.

Near the front of the line at North Bend Way, hauler Kraig Kinnear drove one of the first trucks off the freeway, around noon, and was waiting out the cleanup on Tanner Road. By around 3 p.m., he said, traffic enforcement officials had stopped allowing truck traffic into the Truck Town area.

Kinnear has been forced off the road a few times in the past two years because of weather, but he was hopeful that this time, the roads would clear up by early evening.

The DOT website estimated at 4:20 p.m. Monday that the clean-up work would take at least three hours, but they might know by 6:30 p.m. approximately when Snoqualmie Pass would re-open.

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