PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — A winter storm that has brought as much as 3 feet of snow (.9 meters) to northern California has prompted the Oregon Department of Transportation to turn back Interstate 5 southbound traffic near Ashland, Oregon.
All traffic was affected by the closure Wednesday afternoon and there was no estimate of when the freeway will reopen to southbound travel, The Oregonian/OregonLive reported.
Hazardous winter driving conditions begin south of Yreka, California, according to Gary Leaming, Oregon Department of Transportation spokesman. However, he said traffic stopped in northern California has stressed services and filled hotels.
Southbound traffic will be held, Leaming said. Travelers are being advised to go to Medford, where there is food and fuel. Detours are limited with U.S. Highway 97 from Klamath Falls, Oregon also closed at the border. Southbound travelers are being asked to wait to cross the border until conditions improve, Leaming said.
Much of the powerful storm happened overnight, but winter weather continued along I-5 Wednesday and agencies were working to remove snow from roads.
Pacific Power said on Wednesday morning that 45,000 Oregon customers in and around Grants Pass, Gold Hill and Cave Junction had lost power. Most had it back by Wednesday afternoon, officials said.