News

Winter storm expected to heavily impact  I-25 South Gap project area Wednesday night

October 23, 2019 - Statewide News - CDOT urges motorists to avoid travel in the Gap during the storm; snow impacts also expected in Metro Denver, the foothills and Southeast Colorado

Heavy snow is forecasted for the I-25 South Gap project area between Colorado Springs and south Denver, Metro Denver and Southeast Colorado Wednesday evening, Oct. 23 through Thursday morning, Oct. 24 with anticipated Winter Storm Warnings and Winter Weather Advisories taking effect this evening. The largest impacts of the storm are expected west of Denver into the foothills to the Eisenhower Tunnel and south of Denver along I-25, with up to seven inches of snow around the Palmer Divide. Travel impacts, including possible closures, are expected for Monument Hill and the I-25 South Gap project area. 

If you travel on I-25 between Colorado Springs and south Denver, avoid this stretch of highway Wednesday night (8 p.m. and later) and early Thursday morning, when the storm is expected to hit.  

Here is a breakdown of the anticipated impacts:

 I-25 SOUTH GAP PROJECT AND MONUMENT HILL 

The forecast for the I-25 South Gap project is five to nine inches of snow, with the brunt of the storm expected to hit around 8 p.m. Wednesday and tapering off Thursday morning. Due to this, CDOT urges motorists who travel through the I-25 South Gap project to head home from work as early as possible on Wednesday, to avoid driving through the area on Wednesday night and early Thursday morning. 

CDOT will pre-treat I-25 Monument Hill and the area north up to Castle Rock beginning Wednesday morning, but the anticipated heavy snow in the Gap area will lead to slick driving conditions through the evening commute and overnight. The speed limit will be lowered to 45 MPH beginning at 8:00 p.m. Wednesday and will last throughout the duration of the storm.

While CDOT crews will be out treating and plowing roads to make them as safe as possible for winter driving, motorists need to be prepared for lowered speed limits and likely road closures due to heavy snowfall and dangerous driving conditions. If you must drive, CDOT urges driving slow, leaving a safe distance behind the vehicle ahead, do not pass plows, and ensure your vehicle is winter ready with appropriate tires for the weather.

The Thursday morning commute through the Gap area will likely be wet and slick. Be aware of icy areas on bridges and overpasses. Again, if you can be flexible with your work hours Thursday morning, heading out after the morning commute hours is highly advised. Please drive slow and do not speed. Before you leave Thursday morning, make sure to check the latest road conditions by going to cotrip.org or visit CDOT’s social media channels.

 METRO DENVER 

The storm is expected to hit the Denver metro area late afternoon Wednesday with cold rainy weather and turning to snow by Wednesday evening. CDOT crews will begin snow shifts Wednesday afternoon and will have approximately 100 plows throughout the storm. Crews are not expected to pre-treat the roads with salt brine because the rain would wash away the materials. They will de-ice roads once the snow starts to keep pavement as clear as possible.

Motorists should give themselves extra time for their Thursday morning commute as roads are expected to be mostly wet and slick with icy areas on bridges and overpasses. It’s critical that vehicles be winter ready with appropriate tires, take it slow and leave plenty of room behind the vehicle ahead. Check cotrip.org to track the road conditions before leaving for your Thursday morning commute.

 SOUTHEAST COLORADO

The storm is expected to hit the Palmer Divide, Colorado Springs and Teller County late into the evening Wednesday and early Thursday. Road conditions in Monument and Colorado Springs will be slushy beginning around 8 p.m. Wednesday night. Commuters are encouraged to be home before 8 p.m. on Wednesday to avoid winter travel conditions. I-25 through Colorado Springs and Monument will be pretreated with brine beginning Wednesday, before the storm moves in. Walsenburg, Trinidad, La Veta Pass and Raton Pass will also be impacted by the fall storm. La Veta Pass could see accumulations of five to nine inches. Be prepared for winter driving and have adequate traction to meet the new laws.

Most of southeastern Colorado will see winter driving conditions on Thursday morning. Motorists are encouraged to delay commute if possible. Conditions are expected to improve in the afternoon hours on Thursday.

THE BOTTOM LINE:

  • The heaviest snowfall is anticipated in the Gap area. CDOT highly encourages avoiding travel through the Gap area Wednesday night past 8:00 p.m. Expect lowered speed limits and potential closures.

  • CDOT plows will be out in full force along the major corridors. Do not pass the snow plows.

  •  There is a risk of freezing overnight Wednesday into Thursday morning’s commute. Expect icy roads and drive with caution, especially on bridges and overpasses.

  •  Go slow. Please do not speed.

  • Leave plenty of space behind the vehicle in front of you.

STAY INFORMED 

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