Light snow has started to swirl in downtown Portland just ahead of the evening commute.
National Weather Service meteorologists said Tuesday they anticipate 2-to-4 inches of snow falling in Oregon’s largest city, mostly between 6 p.m. and 9 p.m. Earlier projections called for up to 8 inches in an area from Portland to Kelso, Washington.
The weather service says the central and southern Willamette Valley will likely see a few inches of snow, with the highest totals in the hills. The precipitation won’t arrive until after the sun goes down.
Snow arrived earlier in Washington state, where about 3 inches fell in Battle Ground, and in the state capital of Olympia.
Schools throughout the region let kids go home early and many nighttime activities and events have been canceled.
Light snow began falling before the morning commute in the Portland metropolitan area, a preview of the heavier precipitation that’s expected during the drive home from work and into the evening.
The National Weather Service says a winter storm warning is in effect from the Portland metro area north into Southwest Washington, with potential snow accumulations of 3 to 8 inches.
Snow is also projected to fall in Salem, Corvallis and other parts of Oregon, with the weather service warning that the Interstate 5 passes between Roseburg and Grants Pass could be treacherous.
Those who must drive are advised to slow down, carry tire chains and wear warm clothes.
Portland Community College canceled classes Tuesday and some school districts did the same.
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