Crashes Reported As Snow Blasts Washington

By: Associated Press
By: Associated Press

AUBURN, Wash. (AP) — Early spring snowfall caused problems Thursday on both sides of the Cascades in Washington, including a fatal crash east of Auburn.

Winter-like weather prompted the state Department of Transportation to extend the deadline for removing studded snow tires to April 5 from April 1, department official Chris Christopher said.

A 61-year-old woman died instantly when her car slid broadside into a parked State Patrol vehicle on State Route 18. As much as 5 inches of snow were reported in some areas southeast of Seattle overnight, and Highway 18 was closed through the morning commute because of the pileup.

According to a patrol report, troopers were investigating a number of spinout crashes and an apparent drunken-driving case when the woman's late-model sedan went out of control and slammed into a patrol car parked on the eastbound shoulder at about 3 a.m. No troopers were injured.

In the southeast corner of the state, whiteout conditions were reported in much of the Palouse.

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