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Metro & Snow

Are you ready for winter?

Metro prepares for winter weather by planning alternate bus routes for snowy conditions, maintaining communication tools to keep riders informed about weather-related service changes, and having an Emergency Snow Network (ESN) that operates during the most severe conditions. This guide will help you learn how you can get the most out of Metro's winter weather preparations.

Know your snow routes

Find a route map

When streets become snowy or icy, Metro may reroute buses away from hills and onto less-steep roads, or shift buses from neighborhood streets onto arterials that are more likely to be plowed.

To find the planned snow route for your bus, see the map printed in your route timetable or look up your route map using the search box provided.

The timetable maps show regular routes along with a dashed line indicating snow routes.

Snow checklists

Before snow season

Sign up for Metro Transit Alerts. Metro will e-mail or text you about any changes in service for the bus routes you select. You can also visit and >bookmark the Metro Online Alerts & Updates to find changes to bus service due to snow or other disruptions, the Snow, Ice & Flood map, a list of rerouted buses, links to descriptions of snow routes, and Metro's ESN.

Pick up a printed timetable for your route early in the season. These timetables show both snow routes and regular routes. Locate other bus routes or stops that would work for you if your regular service is delayed or rerouted. There may be more bus service available on cleared arterials, at major transit hubs, and at Park & Ride lots.

Save the Metro Customer Information number, 206-553-3000, in your phonebook.

When it snows or there is a threat of snow

Before traveling, check the weather reports and the Snow, Ice & Flood Alerts page to see what areas are affected and which routes are rerouted. Some routes may also be delayed or otherwise affected due to conditions in other areas. Remember that the Metro Online Trip Planner and Tracker do not show service revisions, delays or cancellations. This also applies to other trip planning programs not provided by King County.

For employers and employees

Even on a typical day in the Puget Sound region, getting to work might be affected by traffic, schedule changes or construction.

But what if snow, a flood or another emergency creates serious delays or safety risks? What's your back- up plan to stay safe and still do your job? Can you work from home? Do you know other ways to travel? Do you know how to get the latest news?

Checklists for employers and employees.

Emergency Snow Network (ESN)

During the worst weather, Metro may activate its ESN.  When the ESN is activated Metro service will severely reduce service to include only core bus routes and shuttles primarily serving key arterials and transit centers. Some neighborhoods and areas of the county may have limited or no bus service because of difficult travel conditions or geography.

Read more »

Service Area Map:

  • Central Seattle
  • East King County
  • North King County
  • North Seattle
  • South Seattle
  • Southeast King County
  • Southwest King County

The King County Department of Transportation is providing this information as a service to the general public. While every attempt is made to provide accurate and timely information, estimates of the nature and duration of any particular route change or other event are subject to conditions beyond the control of King County and are difficult to predict. Those relying on this information should do so at their own risk, and neither King County nor any of its employees or agents shall be liable for the accuracy of this information or any actions taken as a result.