Thousands of people are expected to take a drive this upcoming holiday weekend. The Memorial weekend marks the first big drive weekend of the spring and summer. The State Department of Transportation says drivers should check the WSDOT website for traffic congestion on all key weekend travel routes, including Interstate 90 over Snoqualmie Pass, US 2 over Stevens Pass, I-5 through Thurston and Pierce counties and I-5 between Bellingham and the US/Canadian border. Those are the busiest routes for the upcoming weekend.

To help ease traffic congestion, WSDOT and its contractors will suspend most state highway construction work at noon Friday, May 24, until Monday, May 27. On US 2 west of Stevens Pass, only one lane is open in each direction while crews work to stabilize slopes. On US 97 south of Toppenish, a pilot car will escort traffic over the Satus Creek bridge. Drivers can expect around-the-clock delays of up to 20 minutes.

Other events that may affect traffic include Seattle Mariners’ games, May 24-26; The Northwest Folklife Festival at Seattle Center, May 24-27; and Ski to Sea in Whatcom County, May 24-26.

Meanwhile Gas Prices Rise

Gas prices rise before big driving weekend Yakima, May 20- Average retail gasoline prices in Yakima have risen 15.8 cents per gallon in the past week, averaging $3.90/g yesterday, according to GasBuddy's daily survey of 91 gas outlets in Yakima. This compares with the national average that has increased 8.9 cents per gallon in the last week to $3.67/g, according to gasoline price website GasBuddy.com.

Including the change in gas prices in Yakima during the past week, prices yesterday were 27.0 cents per gallon lower than the same day one year ago and are 35.5 cents per gallon higher than a month ago. The national average has increased 16.6 cents per gallon during the last month and stands 3.0 cents per gallon lower than this day one year ago.