Transportation officials recommend against driving, if you don't have to. If you do need to drive, AAA spokeswoman Marie Dodds advises packing an emergency kit - with blankets, flares, and extra food and clothes - even for a short trip. She says traffic tie-ups can turn a short commute into a long slog.

Dodds says if you have to get behind the wheel, there are two keys to safe winter driving.

"Number one - slow down," says Dodds. "Number two - make sure you give yourself plenty of extra space between you and the car in front of you. If you do just those two things, you can avoid a lot of mishaps that happen to drivers."

Dodds says mapping your route in advance is a good idea - with special consideration for where steep and slippery hills are.

Oregon's Department of Transportation says if you do get stuck - stay with your car. ODOT says abandoned cars will be towed.

This story originally appeared on Oregon Public Broadcasting.

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