GLENWOOD SPRINGS, Colo. (CBS4)- Interstate 70 was closed again on Saturday through Glenwood Canyon due to a flash flood warning. Minutes later, the Colorado Department of Transportation says mud and debris came down the mountain at five different points of the interstate. The same stretch between Rifle and Dotsero has been closed numerous times in the last week as storms producing heavy rain set up over Eagle and Garfield counties.
Saturday’s slides are located 10 miles east of Glenwood Springs at mile marker 128. The mess covers both sides of the interstate – the raised westbound lanes and the lower eastbound lanes.
“Once the NWS warning happened at 3:15, we immediately went into our protocol to close I-70 for safety closure. That slide occurred almost immediately after the weather service issued its flash flood warning,” CDOT’s Lisa Schwantes told CBS4.
I-70 Glenwood Canyon is CLOSED. A debris flow has covered EB and WB lanes. Travelers should be aware that this is an extended closure. No estimated time of opening.
— Colorado Department of Transportation (CDOT) (@ColoradoDOT) July 3, 2021
Schwantes said there are presently dozen vehicles stuck in between slides in the eastbound lanes. There are no reports of injuries.
“Due to the confined space on the interstate roadway in the canyon, a limited amount of equipment can operate safely in the corridor,” CDOT stated in a press release. “Removal of the mud and debris will require extensive work throughout the evening and night.”
Schwantes said crews hoped to have the interstate re-opened by Sunday.
The flash flood warning expired at 5 p.m. CDOT crews did not begin cleanup activities until then.
“They need to be safe as well,” Schwantes said.
No one was reportedly hurt in any of the previous mudslides. One Colorado Springs woman described the moment a mudslide came crashing over her vehicle and others while driving through the canyon last week.