(COLO) – On August 10, 2020, the biggest fire in the White River National Forest began. The Grizzly Creek Fire quickly spread in multiple directions, past the westbound lanes of I-70 and up the north canyon wall, eventually consuming 32,631 acres. This fire caused the longest closure on record of I-70 in Glenwood Canyon.
“With warmer temperatures arriving soon, spring snowmelt could cause additional problems for this highway,” stated Major David Rollins, Colorado State Patrol. “We are recommending that motorists who travel I-70, particularly through Glenwood Canyon take steps now to prepare for potential landslides.
Landslides can travel several miles and create an avalanche of earth, mud, and debris. These natural disasters are fast-moving and come with force. Advance preparation could make a big difference in your safety and survival.
The Colorado State Patrol recommends the following if you frequently travel through the Glenwood Canyon or are planning to visit the area:
·Stay Alert! Look for the signs of a landslide:
o Unusual sounds, such as rocks knocking together or trees cracking.
o Sunken roadbeds.
o Unusual bulges, mud, or rock on the road, embankment, or sidewalks.
o Fences, retaining walls, utility poles tilting or moving.
o Slowly developing, widening cracks appear on the ground or roadways.
o If driving by a body of water, look for sudden changes in water levels.
·Pay attention to weather forecasts, that warn of fast snowmelt conditions, heavy rain, and specific landslide warnings.
·Carry tools in your vehicle to help your car get free: shovel and a wooden plank.
·Also carry water, food, cellphone charger, flashlight, and first aid supplies.
·Remain calm and call 9-1-1 if trapped. Be prepared for longer response times due to the conditions.
Awareness and preparedness can help drivers avoid numerous disasters on the road. Take the time to stock your vehicle and learn how to protect yourself for the impending Spring season.
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ABOUT THE COLORADO STATE PATROL
Since our origin in 1935, the Colorado State Patrol (CSP) has focused on preserving human life and protecting property within our communities. Our 1,100 members embody the core values of Honor, Duty, and Respect in their daily jobs. In addition to our expertise in motor vehicle safety on the state’s roadways, the CSP is responsible for the Governor and other dignitaries’ protection, commercial motor vehicle enforcement, hazardous materials, homeland security, communications, investigative services, criminal interdiction, community education, aviation operations, and more. For additional information, visit us online at Colorado State Patrol or follow us on Twitter, Instagram, YouTube, or Facebook.