To update: Click here for the road conditions and closings on Sunday.
Road conditions along the Front Range in Colorado worsened shortly after the snow began to fall steadily on Saturday night, resulting in several major road closures.
All east and west lanes on I-70 were closed between Silverthorne and Denver after a slow winter storm covered the streets with snow and ice. According to the Department of Transportation, the west lanes have been closed at the Morrison exit or mile 259. The motorway was reopened in both directions later on Saturday evening.
“Heavy snowfall is moving into the area and road conditions are deteriorating. Visibility is very poor and snow is building up on the road, ”CDOT said in a statement. “Motorists are encouraged not to find an alternative route, but to turn around and find a safe place to wait for the storm.”
WESTBOUND CLOSURE will be established at C-470, mp 260. All traffic is diverted east (south) on Colorado 470.
** COMPLETE CLOSURE ** BOTH APPROACHES FROM SILVERTHORNE (mp 205) and the greater Denver area. pic.twitter.com/UfXrkorKrT
– CSP Golden (@csp_golden) March 14, 2021
US 6 through Clear Creek Canyon was also closed in both directions after a head-on collision. North of Fort Collins, I-25 from Wellington to the Wyoming border closed shortly after 7:30 p.m. due to adverse weather conditions, and US 287 from Livermore to Wyoming closed around 8:15 p.m.
Near Golden, the US 40 closed both directions at 8:35 p.m. as a jackknife semi-trailer blocked all lanes, CDOT reported.
Additionally, CDOT recommends avoiding I-25 between Castle Rock and Monument as the road is likely to be closed. It is also possible that I-70 east of Airpark Road and other roads in the Eastern Plains may be closed depending on the severity of the storm.
City and traffic officials urge residents to stay home and not travel this weekend unless clearly necessary. Those who need to drive should keep emergency equipment with blankets, food, batteries, water, a shovel, and survival supplies in case they get stuck or stranded, CDOT said.
The storm system, which is expected to shed 1 to 2 feet of snow on Denver and even more in the surrounding areas, brings heavy, wet snow that makes the roads slippery as it builds up, said Kari Bowen, a meteorologist for the National Weather Service in Boulder.
“People didn’t expect this storm to last that long so they might have let go of their watch or thought they might go out,” Bowen said of the storm’s slow start on Saturday. “We want people to understand that the snow may fall later in the morning, the snow will continue to fall and create dangerous and highly effective conditions.”
Anyone catching a flight from Denver International Airport should check flight information before heading to the airport, as more than 1,800 trips have been canceled.