Storm wreaks havoc for motorists
A snowstorm Sunday wreaked havoc for motorists around the state, causing a slew of crashes on icy, wet roads and bringing cars to a standstill on major highways.
Lisa Lane of the Colorado Department of Transportation said several weather-related accidents on Interstate 25 near Castle Rock in the afternoon brought northbound traffic to a halt.
On Interstate 70, end-of-weekend traffic moving eastbound near the Eisenhower Tunnel was slower than normal, Lane said.
Alex Hil, 24, said driving was difficult during the day.
“It was like a blizzard,” said Hil, a worker at the Phillips 66 in Vail. “People said it was difficult to drive.”
But by the night, he said the weather had cleared, leaving behind icy spots on the road.
In the afternoon, westbound lanes of the interstate were closed near Glenwood Canyon for about two hours while authorities cleared a multicar accident involving a semi-truck that jackknifed, Lane said. It was not immediately clear if the weather caused the crash.
Colorado State Patrol Trooper Eric Wynn said officers were out working multiple traffic accidents around the state. No fatalities were reported, he said.
“We’ve been busy on all areas responding to traffic accidents,” Wynn said. “It’s been mostly property damage and minor injuries.”
The storm was expected to move out of the state by early Monday morning. CDOT spokeswoman Stacy Stegman said crews should have enough time to work on the roads before the morning commute.
“It will be a slow commute,” she said. “But it won’t be terrible.”
The National Weather Service said snow has been spotty in areas.
John Kyle, Data Acquisition Progam Manager at the service’s Grand Junction Office, said parts of the central mountains, including the San Juans, have received 21⁄2 feet of fresh powder in the past two days.
That region has gotten more than 80 inches in the last four to five days, he said, which has helped improve the San Miguel-Dolores-Animas-San Juan Basin snowpack from 46 percent a week ago to 58 percent.
But in other areas, like north of Steamboat Springs, the service reported trace amounts of precipitation, Kyle said.
The weather service said the state would get a break from the weather in the beginning of the week. Another storm could roll in as early as Wednesday and may continue into the weekend.
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Friends of Colorado Avalanche Information Center has contributed to the state’s avalanche center for several years to help with forecasting for backcountry visitors. It cannot hold in-person fundraisers this year so its asking supporters to sign up for an annual membership.