include link chains, cable chains, or any other device that attaches
to the wheel, vehicle or outside of the tire that is specifically
designed to increase traction on ice and snow conditions. For information
on the placement of chains go to Minimum Chain Requirements.
Tires" are tires that meet the Rubber Manufacturers Association
definition as suitable for use in severe snow conditions, which
are marked with a snowflake/mountain emblem on the sidewall:
information on tires that meet the tire industry definition as suitable
for use in severe snow conditions, contact your tire dealer or the
Northwest Tires Dealers Association. When allowed in place of chains,
traction tires are to be placed as shown on Minimum
tires are legal for use in Oregon from November 1 to April 1. The
studs must be made of a rigid material that wears at the same rate
as the tire tread. Studs must extend at least .04 inch but not more
than .06 inch beyond the tread surface.
following vehicles are exempt from the chain law; however, in very
bad winter road conditions all vehicles may be required to use chains
regardless of the type of vehicle or type of tire being used (this
is known as a conditional road closure). A conditional road closure
may occur on any of Oregon's highways and are frequent in the winter
on Interstate 5 through the Siskiyou Pass south of Ashland:
Police vehicles, fire vehicles, ambulances, and Department of Transportation
highway maintenance vehicles when performing their duties.
A four-wheel or all-wheel drive passenger vehicle if all of the
following statements are true:
It has an unloaded weight of 6,500 pounds or less;
It is operated to provide power to both the front and rear wheels;
c) It is carrying chains;
d) It has mud and snow, all-weather radial, or traction tires on
all of its wheels;
e) It is not towing another vehicle;
f) It is not being operated in a manner or under conditions that
cause the vehicle to lose traction.
bus that is over 10,000 pounds gross vehicle weight (GVW) due only
to accessibility modifications for disabled persons is exempt from
the chain requirements for vehicles rated over 10,000 GVW unless
it is towing or being towed.
NOTE: Although exempt, ODOT vehicles use mud and snow tires
and chains in most winter situations. Studded tires are not used
on ODOT vehicles because of the damage such tires cause to the highway.
who disobey the signs requiring chains or traction tires are subject
to a class C traffic infraction.
information on use of chains and traction tires is based on Oregon
Administrative Rule Chapter 734, Division 17.
To view the administrative rule go to: