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If it felt as if traffic was heavier than normal on U.S. 285 and U.S, 50 in Chaffee County this afternoon, it was. I-70 through Glenwood Canyon was closed Tuesday afternoon when more flood warnings were issued. The safety closure in both directions was issued early Tuesday afternoon, with a flash flood warning in effect.

The Grizzly Creek Fire in Glenwood Canyon jumped Interstate 70, damaging the highway and closing it to traffic for several days. Courtesy image from the Grizzly Creek Fire Update

A flood watch was issued earlier Tuesday and was upgraded to a warning shortly after 3:00 p.m., with heavy rains predicted above the Grizzly Creek burn scar.

The closure is in place between mile markers 87 (Rifle) and 133 (Dotsero) eastbound, and between 133 and 116 westbound, according to a Colorado Department of Transportation (CDOT) news alert.

“The safety closure is in place to protect motorists from the potential of flash floods, mudslides, rockfall or other hazards that can be triggered by heavy rains at the location of Grizzly Creek burn scar area,” CDOT said in the release.

CDOT said it will remain in place through the duration of the Flash Flood Warning, which is forecast to end at 5:00 p.m.

“If a debris flow or mudslide occurs, motorists should be aware that I-70 will be closed for a longer period of time to allow maintenance crews to clear the highway.”