Motorcycle and Scooter Training

Special Report


Solar Ecipse 2017 Advisory: Avoid Riding August 18-22

Next weekend, Oregon expects to host 1,000,000+ visitors coming to view the August 21 solar eclipse, a true “once-in-a-lifetime” opportunity for many people. With thousands and thousands of stargazers out in the daytime, Team Oregon recommends motorcyclists avoid riding August 18-22.

Traffic is expected to be unusually heavy on highways and side streets in Portland, the Willamette Valley, the I-5 corridor and cities along the eclipse path in the days before, during and after the eclipse. Be prepared for the worst. If you have to travel, allow plenty of time to reach your destination and be aware that you are sharing the road with a lot of people who are unfamiliar with the area.

Much of the information below was provided by Oregon Department of Transportation (ODOT) on their official website.

Arrive Early, Stay Put and Leave Late

Oregon will be the first state where you can view the total solar eclipse crossing the United States Monday, August 21. For about two and a half hours, daytime will gradually yield to dusk—and to darkness for about two minutes—as the moon passes in front of the sun. ODOT is planning ahead to keep Oregon moving, and encourages you to do the same. An estimated 1 million visitors are coming to Oregon to view this celestial spectacle. That means traffic backups are inevitable, but preparation ensures a good time for visitors and residents alike. What you do to plan ahead will make or break your eclipse-viewing experience. 



Traffic is expected to be unusually heavy on highways and
side streets for several days before and after the eclipse.

Five Ways to Prepare for Eclipse 2017

1. Expect traffic changes. ODOT does not plan to close any state highways. But as traffic volumes increase, they may restrict some left turns to and from highways in order to keep traffic moving. Cities and counties may choose to do the same thing on their streets and roads, especially around venues with many visitors.

2. Help keep roads clear. Staying off the roads helps make sure emergency service vehicles can get through. Take care of errands well before Aug. 21. Limit your trips, or ride your bicycle!

3. Travel with friends. Joining friends and family for the trip to totality will reduce the number of cars on the road. Find carpool information at

4. Caution friends, family and other visitors. Tell them to #DriveHealthy. Avoid unnecessary distractions during your travels - and especially when our highways will be crowded during the time of the eclipse. Arrive early, stay put during the eclipse and leave late afterwards. If everyone jumps on the highways all at the same time right after the eclipse, no one will go very far very fast. Remember, all travelers have a share responsibility to stay safe.

5. Be prepared. Plan ahead for your basic needs such as food, water, gas for the car and bathroom breaks in case you're stuck in traffic. Plan to get to where you need to be before you need to go! Use or call 511 before you travel for 24/7 updates on road condition information.

We're all in this together.
ODOT will have crews posted along critical travel routes to keep motorists mobile and safe, and we'll provide travel updates via and 511 so you can be prepared with the most current travel information available. 

This is a rare opportunity but it brings potential hazards. We must all do our part to be prepared. Look out for each other. Help your neighbors and other travelers who may be unfamiliar with the area. Be friendly, helpful and patient - and please enjoy Oregon!


Further Reading

You can find additional information on preparing for the eclipse here:

Travel Oregon - Get Ready for the Total Solar Eclipse
in 2017

Oregon State Police – “Solar Eclipse Safety Information

NASA – “Experience the 2017 Eclipse Across America

Citylab – “The Darker Side of This Summer’s Total Eclipse

About Us

Team Oregon is a cooperative partnership with the Oregon Department of Transportation and Oregon State University, providing statewide training, education and outreach for riders of all levels of experience and riding ability. Since 1984, the program has trained more than 180,000 riders.


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