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CDOT urges drivers to avoid travel, especially in the mountains, as winter storm moves in

Posted at 7:11 PM, Oct 26, 2019
and last updated 2019-10-26 21:38:31-04

DENVER — The Colorado Department of Transportation is urging drivers to avoid driving during a long-lasting winter storm that is expected to move into the area Saturday night and into Sunday, making the Monday morning commute along the Front Range and the Denver Metro area a challenge.

The agency is especially concerned about conditions on the Interstate 70 Mountain Corridor and Interstate 25 between Monument and Castle Rock.

CDOT is hoping to avoid a repeat of Wednesday when multiple crashes and spinouts on I-70 in the mountains prompted the closure of the corridor for several hours.

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Officials said travel on the I-25 corridor between Monument and Castle Rock would also be challenging come Monday morning. CDOT said the speed limit on this stretch would be reduced to 45 miles per hour beginning noon Sunday as the storm starts to hit.

CDOT is advising motorists who have to be out to take it slow, stay safely behind the vehicle ahead, don’t pass plows, and make sure your vehicle is equipped for the weather, including the appropriate tires for snow.

MORE | Driving in the Colorado snow: How to prepare your car for winter weather

Colorado's traction law requires all passenger vehicles - including 4WD and AWD - to have appropriate tires for the snow. They either must have one of the following: snow tires, tires with the mud/snow (M+S) designation, or chains or alternative traction devices such as an autosock. 4WD or AWD can have all weather tires with 3/16 inch tread, but other vehicles must have either snow tires or chains.

Icy conditions and heavy snow are expected to impact much of the state beginning late Saturday, beginning with freezing rain and transitioning to snow by Sunday morning, with the heaviest bands on Sunday afternoon and night and tapering off through Monday, according to the NWS.