I-70 in Glenwood Canyon remains closed Thursday due to rapidly changing weather notifications

Post Independent Staff Report

Although Interstate 70 will remain closed for at least much of Thursday, no new damage or slides were reported on the roadway overnight, a Colorado Department of Transportation update states.

“The burn scar area in Glenwood Canyon has received significant precipitation since the closure last night, though no new mudslides or damage have been reported,” the Thursday morning update states. “The closure will remain in place due to an unusually high uncertainty with the forecast, including abrupt shifts this morning. The Flash Flood Watch in place now could turn into a Flash Flood Warning quickly.”

CDOT originally closed closed I-70 in both directions through Glenwood Canyon at mile points 133 (Dotsero) and MP 116 (Glenwood Springs) at 4:20 p.m. Wednesday, Aug. 18 due to a flash flood warning.

In the meantime, traffic will be diverted onto the northern detour route via U.S. Highway 40 through Steamboat Springs and Craig using state Highways 9 or 131 coming from the east and state Highway 13 from the west.

CDOT also advised that visitors and local traffic traveling I-70 eastbound to Glenwood Springs and destinations in the Roaring Fork Valley can continue east on U.S. Highway 6 at Rifle and enter back on eastbound I-70 at Exit 90 (Main Rifle), Exit 97 (Silt) or Exit 105 (New Castle).

Throughout the rainfall area, some gauges recorded over an inch of precipitation overnight. It’s the first major weather event to impact I-70 through Glenwood Canyon since it reopened Saturday, Aug. 14.

“CDOT is following the same standard traffic safety and detour procedures that were in place during the previous closure,” Thursday’s update states. “The repairs in Glenwood Canyon have held up through the weather event so far. This is the first significant rain event since the major slides occurred in late July, and CDOT is closely monitoring Glenwood Canyon to assess how the canyon responds to the rainfall and saturation.”

This is a developing story that will be updated.

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