CDOT Reminds Motorists to Use Caution When Driving During Chain Law Conditions

November 21, 2011 - WINTER DRIVING - Statewide Transportation Plan - Although Colorado has numerous chain stations, trucks may chain up/down along other areas of highway roadways.

STATEWIDE — As winter approaches and Colorado residents and tourists begin to make their regular trips to the Rocky Mountains along the I-70 corridor, the Colorado Department of Transportation (CDOT) would like to remind them to drive with care, especially when the chain law is in effect.

Chains must be in the possession of all commercial vehicles operating on I-70 in either direction between mile marker (MM) 133 (Dotsero) and MM 259 (Morrison) from September 1 through May 31. However, a chain law may be implemented at any time on any state, federal, or interstate highway in Colorado. During the dozens of times chain laws go into effect each winter, drivers must pull over and “chain up” by attaching chains to the wheels of their vehicles to help gain better traction during adverse weather conditions.

Although Colorado has numerous chain stations where trucks can chain up/down, weather conditions may prevent truckers from reaching designated chain stations. It is not uncommon for truckers to use roadway shoulders as impromptu chain stations and motorists should keep in mind that during any time a chain law is in effect, there could be trucks pulled over on the shoulders and drivers may be out of their vehicles.

Here are a few safety tips for driving through chain stations:

  • Watch for trucks on the shoulder chaining up/down. Make sure to give trucks on the shoulders or within chain station areas enough room to walk around their vehicles safely.
  • Slow down in the chain station areas, and be mindful of truck drivers, Colorado State Patrol vehicles, and CDOT maintenance workers who may be on the roadway.
  • Pay attention to overhead signing, and obey lane restrictions in the chain up areas.

CDOT has several resources available to motorists regarding chain stations. For a map of stations along the I-70 corridor and I-25, visit: For a list of chain up tips, click here: and download the “Chain Up Tips for Commercial Vehicles” brochure. CDOT will notify drivers when chain laws are in effect by sending out email and text alerts to those who have signed up for our automated updates, electronic message signs along the highway, posting the information at, and by updating the state’s 511 system.

CDOT would like to remind motorists to reduce speeds in areas where the roads are wet and slushy. For more information about winter driving in Colorado, visit To receive real-time updates about road conditions in your area, visit and click on the green cell phone icon in the upper right hand corner of the page. Updates are also available via Twitter @coloradodot.