As of Friday, March 25, 2016
ODOT won’t extend the 2015-16 studded tire season past March 31. Studded tires are allowed in Oregon from Nov. 1 through March 31 each year. The law allows ODOT to extend the studded tire season when necessary, but current weather forecasts do not support an extension this year.
ODOT is making this decision in cooperation with the Washington Department of Transportation, which is also announcing today it will not extend its studded tire season past March 31. (Both states have the same deadline.)
“Please don’t wait until the deadline to remove your studded tires,” said Luci Moore, ODOT Maintenance and Operations Engineer, “especially if you aren’t driving in the mountain passes between now and then.”
ODOT encourages drivers to consider other types of traction tires or chains to help minimize roadway damage caused by studded tires. A 2014 study concluded studded tires cause about $8.5 million in damage each year to state highways.
Other types of traction tires are available. These traction tires meet the Rubber Manufacturers Association standards for use in severe snow conditions and carry an emblem on the tire – see graphic — sidewall of a three-peaked mountain with a snowflake in the center. Research shows these tires cause no more damage than standard all-weather radial tires, while providing better traction than studded tires on bare pavement.
Drivers with studded tires on their vehicles after the deadline can be charged with a Class C traffic violation.
ODOT maintenance crews will continue to monitor highways, passes and forecasts, and will work to clear any late-season snow or ice as soon as possible. If you must travel when weather conditions present difficulties after March 31, please use other types of traction tires or chains, or postpone your travel until conditions change for the better. Visit www.TripCheck.com or call 511 for the latest road conditions.