Preparing for Thanksgiving traffic - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

Preparing for Thanksgiving traffic

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WASHINGTON - Hard to believe, but Thanksgiving is less than a week away. As millions get ready to travel to their Thanksgiving destinations, we checked in with Washington State Patrol to see what you need to know to arrive safely and on time.

A lot of advice we received from WSP was pretty self-explanatory: leave early, understand that you might have to drive a little bit slower than usual, and if you do get stuck in traffic, keep your cool.

We probably won't have snow here in the Tri-Cities - and that's going to make Thanksgiving travel a lot easier - but we learned today that even though we have a population much, much smaller than cities like Spokane or Seattle...we should still expect a lot of traffic. Especially on the highways.

"Well the one unique thing about Tri-Cities is that a lot of people travel through Tri-Cities coming from Montana and Idaho, Spokane and traveling through to eastern Oregon and south Idaho," said WSP Trooper Chris Thorson. "So even if people aren't necessarily coming to the Tri-Cities, there's a lot of people traveling through on 395."

As always, State Patrol will have extra troopers on the road checking for DUIs, so if you are planning to drink, make sure you have a sober driver.

And while it will probably be decent weather in the Tri-Cities, the passes are a whole different story. Make sure you check the WSDOT website before hitting the road so you know what to expect.

And Seattle made the top 10 list for worst holiday travel, so if you're heading that way for the holiday on Tuesday from 3:45 to 5:30 p.m. it will be twice as busy. I-405 South at route 167 will be the worst place to be driving in Seattle during the Thanksgiving week. And if you're flying out of SeaTac, the busiest route will be coming from downtown to I-5 South.

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