Metro goes on snow routes; 20 routes cancelled
information from King County Metro
All Metro routes in all King County snow areas are now on their designated planned snow routing.
Additionally, while crews work to repair coaches damaged by chains and road conditions, it is necessary for Metro to cancel some routes, as well as some individual trips, until the fleet is fully restored.
For commuter routes with only a few scheduled trips, and for the first or last trip on any route, Metro sends a Transit Alert when trips are canceled.
The National Weather Service is forecasting heavy snow for Friday afternoon and continuing through Saturday.
Metro encourages people to make alternate travel plans for Friday afternoon. If you plan to ride Metro service, anticipate delays, cancelations and extremely cold weather.
Transit customers should check Metro’s Snow & Ice page for information about planned reroutes for the routes they ride. The table is updated as revisions occur. Descriptions of planned reroutes include the specific stops that are both missed and served while buses are rerouted, as well as the streets they use. Use the regularly published schedule as a guide, then expect possible delays.
Individual Trip cancelations are not included in this table. Complete route cancelations are.
Route and trip cancelations
In response to ongoing adverse weather conditions, Metro canceled all trips on 20 bus routes on Friday, due to fleet shortages, and in preparation for the coming winter storm. Riders can confirm their trip is operating by using the Puget Sound Trip Planner app or website ‘Next Departures’ feature. If a trip is canceled it will be displayed as such in these real time features. Significant delays may still be possible, and all riders are encouraged to also check for reroutes. In addition to individual trip cancelations on many routes, Metro expects to completely cancel all trips on routes 9, 29, 37, 71, 78, 125, 200, 201, 204, 208, 224, 237, 243, 244, 268, 308, 309, 316, 330 and Sound Transit Route 540. For routes that remain in service, text your stop ID to 62550 for departure times and individual trip cancelations. Delays are likely and riders should also check for reroutes.
For afternoon service, riders should refer to the MetroWinter page to identify their route’s snow operation plan and any alternate options.
Riding transit in adverse conditions
In areas where streets remain or become slick, transit customers are advised to wait for buses designated to operate at posted bus stops on flat portions of cleared arterials or at major transfer points, such as park-and-ride lots and transit centers where there may be multiple service options.
It is not possible to know when a bus will arrive at a specific location. It is possible for buses to temporarily have to go on unplanned reroutes if streets they normally travel on are unexpectedly blocked. Temporary reroutes are not reflected in the Snow & Ice table or in Metro’s trip planner. When possible a Transit Alert will be sent about an unexpected reroute, however we may not know about all of them.
Know before you go
What to expect
During bad weather and when road conditions are treacherous, be prepared for the conditions, longer than usual waits at bus stops and more crowded buses. There may also be longer waits on hold if you call Metro’s Customer Information line at 206-553-3000. Metro staff can help you with reroutes and other transit information, but cannot tell you when your bus will be at a specific stop.
Metro riders can prepare ahead by visiting Metro’s website and familiarizing themselves with information about how Metro operates in the snow, as well as the snow routing for the routes they ride. Snow routes are shown in timetables. The snow and ice page links to them.
King County snow service areas
Metro’s service area has seven snow regions. It is possible for a bus to travel through more than one snow area and to be affected by conditions in one area and not in others. Also, not all routes have designated snow routes in all areas through which they travel. The table describes what to expect in each area.
Using the snow & ice table
In the Snow and Ice table, the default sort is by area. It is a good idea to first sort the table by your route number, then check all of the areas served by that route and the associated entries for whether or not it is rerouted in your area. Each table entry is specific to one of the seven snow areas. Descriptions of planned reroutes include the specific bus stops that are both missed and served while buses are rerouted, as well as the streets they use.
When you travel
When streets are slick or blocked, be aware of conditions in your immediate area, check media reports, check for transit reroutes, then wait for buses at posted bus stops on the flat portions of arterial streets that have been cleared or treated, or at major transfer points such as transit centers or park and ride lots.
Crews will start chaining buses in the field as early as 10:00 AM on Friday. The fleet is expected to be fully chained by the start of service Saturday morning.
On Friday afternoon, Metro will evaluate conditions and determine whether further significant service reductions are necessary in the coming days.
While Metro utilizes all available resources to operate service as normally as possible during adverse weather or other conditions, the safety of everyone is our highest priority. Buses may be delayed or rerouted, and Metro staff cannot predict affected locations or tell riders exactly when a bus might get to a specific bus stop.
If your bus does not have a pre-planned snow route, it will operate its regular route, however service may be delayed due to weather and road conditions. Buses may have to temporarily go on unplanned reroutes if streets they normally travel on are unexpectedly blocked. These temporary reroutes may not be reflected in the snow and ice table.
Visit Metro’s website for complete transit information.
If buses are operating along their normal routes, but delayed, it may be possible to get more specific information by visiting Metro’s Puget Sound Trip Planner and checking the ‘Next Departures & Stops’ or ‘Tracker’ features. Real time information may be less reliable in adverse or unexpected conditions. Metro’s real time features provide the scheduled times of service at stops, then the predicted time if they are able to do so. During adverse conditions, it is best to use the scheduled times, then expect delays.
Visit Metro’s Service Advisories page for complete information about revised bus service, routing and stops for planned events.
Visit Metro’s online or mobile Puget Sound Trip Planner to plan your travel, and for bus stop, schedule and other information. Snow reroutes and other service disruptions are not reflected in results derived in the trip planner feature. When planning your trip, also check for service revisions that might affect it.
Visit the King County Water Taxi site for information about Water Taxi operation.
For non-transit traffic or other local updates, check media sources, follow @seattledot or visit
Everyone's preparedness and patience during snow or other adverse conditions is appreciated. Travel safely.