Studded tire deadline extended

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Alaska Department of Public Safety Commissioner James Cockrell extended the deadline to remove studded tires from vehicles operating on Alaska roadways, due to extended winter weather conditions across much of the state.

Alaskans living below the 60 North Latitude line, including Southeast, the Aleutian chain, Southwest Alaska, Southern Kenai Peninsula, and Kodiak, may use studded tires on Alaska roadways until May 1.

Alaskans living above the 60 North Latitude line, including all portions of the Sterling Highway, may use studded tires on Alaska roadways until May 15.

Latitude 60 crosses Alaska from east to west, just south of Prince William Sound, Seward, and Chefornak.

Anchorage Mayor Dave Bronson also extended the deadline within the city limits to match the state.

“Much of Alaska is experiencing prolonged winter weather after a heavy snow winter that has extended the ice season well into April,” said Commissioner Jim Cockrell. “This 15-day extension for the studded tire removal deadline will provide additional time to switch to regular tires without compromising safety.”

A copy of the emergency order can be found here

10 COMMENTS

  1. This is a joke. I know drivers that haven’t taken studded tires off commuter vehicles since before the start of covid

  2. Studded tires are a travesty, and should be made illegal — as they have been made in almost every other state — due to the incredible amount of damage that they do to our road surfaces. HOW many times have I hydroplaned in the rain, due to water collecting in the damned chariot ruts caused by the selfish and idiotic use of studded tires!
    .
    Short of making them illegal, the state should institute a tax of $2000 per studded tire, to at least recoup SOME of the associated costs of selfish people using them.

    • I am not a civil engineer, but I do work with several of them. And, the rutting is generally attributed to poor subbase/base materials and using the sub-part asphalt from the north slope. The actual damage from the studs themselves is insignificant, per the info I am getting.
      .
      They tell me that if you were to cut a cross section of the ruts, you will see that the asphalt does not change in thickness (remains two inches thick for example) across the entire width of the road. Since asphalt is a flexible paving material, it will conform to the shape of the base layers. So, if it remains the same thickness, that means the base layers are the problem. Not the tires.
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      Of course, I am relying on the word of others here. But, take it for what it is worth as third person information

      • CBMTTek, yes, I have heard that argument before regarding the asphalt on our roads, but at best I believe that it only partially holds any water (unlike the ruts caused by studded tires).
        .
        I live very close to the Glenn Highway, and have lived in this same location for many years. And one thing that really struck me during my first winter here was the incredibly ugly, sticky, perfectly black dust that settles on EVERYTHING left outdoors during the colder months. It is beyond obvious to me that this black dust is the ground-up asphalt that the studs are grinding off the roads. When I lived on the Hillside, I never saw this wintertime black dust, nor does anyone I know who lives any significant distance from the highway.
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        Also, there are some (rare) stretches of concrete roadway around town, and one can clearly see the rutting in them as well — not as deep, certainly, as in the asphalted roads, but it is there nevertheless. Is anyone going to claim that the CONCRETE is sagging under traffic, as well? And when I lived in Michigan, where studded tires were illegal since I was a very young kid, not only did I NOT see any signs of rutting on any roads, concrete OR asphalt, but I also never saw that nasty black wintertime dust, although I also lived almost as close to a highway similar in traffic to the Glenn Highway as I do now here.

        Frankly, I find those arguments by engineers in favor of studded tires to be half-truths, at best.

    • Jefferson, much of the ” Rutting” that you think is the result of studded tires is actually caused by other factors. Turns out that the Anchorage Bowl is built upon a soft mushy silty material that comes from a soft kind of rock. Road beds constructed with this mush have little structural resistance to prolonged heavy loads. Thereby forming ruts.

      Other parts of Alaska have harder rock that provides better structural integrity.
      So… stop blaming those drivers who merely want to keep their vehicle on the road and consider adopting the Woke/ Leftist viewpoint. That of Blaming God! What was he thinking? Didn’t he know that the rock in the Chugiak range was soft and mushy? Look at the polluted Cook Inlet! Full of 200 minus mesh particles in suspension, how come God gets away with this obvious pollution! Did he file a SWPP?

      I could go on, but I’m late for my sex change hormonal procedure, so I gotta sign off.

    • Jefferson the studs are not the issue. The composition of the asphalt was changed years ago to make it more elastic. This was supposed to stop potholes. I have worked with three different asphalt companies, and they all told me the same story. If the studs removed that much asphalt where is all the asphalt on the edge of the roads? Also, how come the roads go straight through the intersection and not curve for the turn lanes? I mostly agree with everything you say on these blogs, but this one I have to disagree. In our younger days you could leave the vehicle sit on hot asphalt, and it would not leave tire imprints, now on hot days, the asphalt sags and leaves inprints of tires.

      • Mark, maybe I have never looked under the appropriate conditions, but I’ve never seen or noticed the imprints of tires in asphalt on a hot day.

    • Studs have nothing to do with it, Jefferson. It is the quality of the roadwork done that does.

      Look at roads supposedly ‘constructed’ during the spring and summer that so quickly develop traveling ‘ruts’ or ‘depressed paths’.

      It is not studs, but constant traffic that causes said depressed pathways upon roads and highways that are constructed and maintained within inferior materials and engineering, thus allowing constant roadwork for the benefit of those that are employed to ‘fix’ a problem that was generated by them to begin with.

      Don’t believe me?

      Look at the way roads and highways are designed, developed, constructed, and maintained within other northern states and climates, such as our neighbor, Canada.

      Yearly construction within our road system is NOT designed for safety, but rather a non-ending employment game.

  3. Ever drive I-5 between Seattle and Tacoma ? Some of those ruts could swallow a Volkswagen. Something tells me there is not a lot of studded traffic on that road.

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