A fast-moving winter storm combined with heavy traffic is creating closures on Interstate 70 between Vail Pass and Denver. The highway has already seen three closures Friday morning, due to several accidents and slides as the heavy snow created slick roads.
Colorado Department of Transportation spokesman Bob Wilson said drivers should expect commercial vehicle chain laws and passenger vehicle traction laws to remain in effect “as long as the storm is gripping the corridor like right now.”
The storm currently extends west to Avon, and almost as far east as Denver. Passenger traction laws require vehicles to have snow tires, four-wheel drive, or alternative traction devices such as chains or Autosocks.
“Part of the problem is the storm came in extremely fast,” Wilson said. “We’ve just had a lot of traffic, and a lot of slipping and sliding when the storm came in pretty ferocious.”
Colorado State Patrol trooper Josh Lewis said he did not see any reports of serious injuries from Friday morning’s accidents. While he couldn’t give an exact number, he noted there had been “a lot of slide-offs.”
“Most people just need to slow down to avoid going into a guardrail or a median,” Lewis said. “There are gonna be more people off the road than there are troopers to help them.”
Within Summit County, Dillon Dam Road remained closed as gusts of more than 20 mph combined with fresh snow restricted visibility along the road. Summit County Road and Bridge foreman Vic Schroeder said they hoped to reopen the road as soon as visibility improves.