Riding transit in winter

Getting ready for winter weather starts here. Think of it as an extra layer of protection, so you don’t get left out in the cold.
Passengers walk to a Sound Transit bus in winter weather.
Be prepared for winter weather with rider alerts.

'Tis the season for severe winter storms, so be prepared! 

Sign up for text or email Rider Alerts and follow Sound Transit Alerts on X to stay up to date on weather affecting your route. Then take a few minutes to learn about travel alternatives that can meet your needs and review our tips for commuting in extreme weather.

Storms and service interruptions

Snow and ice can disrupt transit, but remember: mudslides, accidents and other events can affect your trip as well, so know your options before you go. Check bus and train schedules or use the Trip Planner before you leave, and always have a backup plan. 

For even more info:

  • Check our rider alerts page for information about your bus or train before you leave.
  • Watch the news or listen to the radio for updates.

Don't forget:

  • Give yourself plenty of time to get to the station or transit center.
  • Use caution when walking on wet or icy station platforms.
  • Dress warmly and be prepared to wait; you may be outdoors longer than expected.
  • Buses and trains are unlikely to stay on schedule.
  • Many popular transit apps (such as OneBusAway) do not work when a bus is on reroute.

Sound Transit service in winter weather

Buses follow normal routes as long as the streets are safe for travel. Some buses may run on snow routes, which may change depending on road conditions, and others may be canceled. Sign up for rider alerts for the most up-to-date information.

Tips for bus riders:

  • In severe snow and ice, buses often avoid hills or other safety hazards.
  • If there's no traffic going by your bus stop, walk to a stop on a busy street.
  • If your bus stop is in the middle of a hill, walk to the bottom where the operator can safely stop.
  • Stand back from the curb until the bus comes to a complete stop. Buses can slide sideways in slippery conditions.
  • Keep in mind that to avoid getting stuck, your bus may not pull all the way over to the curb.

Link and Sounder operate regular service during cold and icy weather, but some emergencies, such as mudslides, can cancel service. 

Plan ahead and be aware of your options in case your train is canceled. You can use the Trip Planner to find alternatives.