DENVER (CBS4) – As the “bomb cyclone” producing blizzard conditions continues in Colorado, the Denver metro area is blocked off from several areas of the state due to road closures. The Colorado Department of Transportation closed large portions of Interstate 70 and Interstate 25 Wednesday due to blowing snow. The Colorado State Patrol is urging drivers to stay off the roads.
“We are incredibly busy in dealing with this storm,” said Tamara Rollison, CDOT’s communication manager for the Denver region. “This is truly a statewide event. … It has made for a very dangerous situation out there.”
“Never have I seen anything like this,” one traveler told CBS4 at a hotel off I-70 in Limon. The hotel lost power in the blizzard.
I-70 is closed:
– In both directions from Tower Road to the Kansas border and westbound at Colfax Avenue.
It was closed for several hours from Morrison to Idaho Springs and again over Vail Pass, but by 5 p.m. those areas were back open.
Joe Campbell of Oklahoma told CBS4’s crew in Limon he was shocked by the change in temperature when storm moved in.
“It was warm when I got here. It was 40 degrees when I walked in this place,” he said. “It was breezy, barely snowed a little bit and I say ‘Hey it’s starting to snow. And I walked back out to my truck and I was getting sand blasted and I said ‘Oh no! And it blasted me!’
I-25 is closed:
– In both directions from Wellington to the Wyoming state line.
– From RidgeGate Parkway in Lone Tree to the Douglas-El Paso county line. It will be closed overnight.
Pena Boulevard between Denver International Airport and I-70 was re-open westbound after crews cleared cars and snow. Eastbound Pena is open; however, drivers are strongly urged to avoid eastbound due to heavy traffic and weather conditions.
Denver International Airport officials are asking people stuck at the airport to take the University of Colorado A-Line to Denver’s Union Station, and for people to pick up passengers there due to difficulties getting to the airport.
Interstate 76 is closed:
– In both directions from U.S. Highway 85 in Commerce City to the Nebraska state line
On I-76 Wednesday morning a Colorado State Patrol corporal died in a crash in blizzard conditions. Daniel Groves was struck by a car in Weld County.
Some stranded drivers are being taken to emergency shelters by Colorado National Guard crews and other rescue teams. At 5 p.m. there were more than a dozen shelters set up across the state. See the full list of shelters here.
Highway 287 is closed north of Ted’s Place to the Wyoming state line. Highway 24 is closed from Calhan to Limon. There are numerous other highways that are closed, including Red Mountain Pass, U.S. Highway 550, in southwestern Colorado.
A Line trains were at a standstill just before 3 p.m. due to a frozen switch near 61st and Pena Blvd.
PHOTO GALLERY: March Blizzard 2019
There were light rail and train delays for RTD because of power outages. The A Line started operating on a 30-minute delay on Wednesday morning due to severe weather conditions. Departures from Union Station at the top of the hour and 30 minute mark, departures from DIA at :27 and :57.
There are also delays on all light rail lines due to rolling power outages. Trains are proceeding slowing and making extra safety stops. Passengers are urged to take extreme caution.
Rocky Mountain National Park roads are closed at entrances or visitor centers.