Heavy snows, icy roads make for treacherous conditions along I-90 in Central Washington

CLE ELUM, Wash. -- A major snow storm Tuesday made for treacherous conditions along Interstate 90, both at Snoqualmie Pass and into Central Washington.

A 63-year-old Ellensburg woman was killed Tuesday morning east of Cle Elum when she lost control of her pickup. It hit a guardrail and rolled. Two passengers, a 21-year-old man and a 21-year-old woman, both from Ellensburg, were injured and taken to a hospital. One of them is in critical condition.

Also near Cle Elum, a semi truck rolled over on top of another pickup truck in the eastbound lanes, according to Trooper Brian Moore.

Video tweeted from the scene also showed an ambulance flipped over on its side. But Moore said there were no serious injuries in that crash. Moore warns roads are very icy and there are heavy traffic backups due to the collision.

Conditions were no better up at Snoqualmie Pass. Heavy snow forced just over a two-hour closure of the eastbound lanes for avalanche control. Then the pass had to shut down entirely around 5:00 p.m. due to multiple collisions and remained closed from Easton to North Bend until just before midnight. Both directions on I-90 were reopened around 11:45 p.m. but chains are required on all vehicles except those will all-wheel drive.

Stevens Pass and White Pass remain open but traction tires are required on both roadways. WSDOT said it's snowing hard at times. Chains are required on vehicles over 10,000 gross vehicle weight.

A weather gauge reported about 9 inches of new snow at Snoqualmie Pass between 8 a.m. and 4 p.m. Tuesday.

A Winter Storm Warning was in effect until 6 a.m. Wednesday for the passes for another 6-12 inches of snow expected by Wednesday morning. After a brief lull, another storm was due in Wednesday afternoon and evening for another 6-10 inches of snow. Long range forecasts suggested the passes will continue to receive quite a bit of snow at times through the end of the week.

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