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January 29, 2013
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Glenwood Canyon reopened following multiple crashes

GLENWOOD CANYON, Colo. - A 10-vehicle pile-up on an icy stretch of I-70 in Glenwood Canyon closed the eastbound lanes from 7 to 9:40 p.m. Monday, according to the Colorado State Patrol. No one was injured.

Meanwhile, a winter storm warning is in effect through 6 p.m. Thursday as a second major system moves through Utah and into Colorado.

In Glenwood Springs, weather-watcher Steve Smith reported four inches of snowfall of snowfall from Monday morning until this morning, containing 0.46 inches of water.

Travelers should be prepared for winter driving conditions, as most highways are icy and snowpacked. Light snow is expected to fall today.

Colorado Department of Transportation (CDOT) maintenance crews are working 12-hour snow shifts, 24 hours a day, until the storm passes.

"Bridges, overpasses and ramps will freeze first, and motorists should remember, 'Ice and Snow, Take It Slow,' " said Ashley Mohr, spokeswoman for CDOT.

Highway 65 over Grand Mesa was closed at 9 p.m. Monday due to adverse conditions and remained closed Tuesday morning.

The Glenwood Canyon crash started about 7 p.m. Monday when an eastbound semi pulling an empty cement tanker skidded on the snowpacked road at milepost 129, jackknifed and hit the center median barrier, blocking both eastbound lanes. The semi was driven by Anthony Salanga, 41, of Laramie, Wyo., and owned by Valley Equipment Leasing.

A Buick Enclave driven by Mandy L. William, 36, of Gypsum, was able to stop and avoid hitting the jackknifed semi.

But a Core-mark Midcontinent Inc. semi tractor trailer driven by Paul A. Aguirre, 26, of Englewood, was unable to stop and collided its front end into the rear of the first semi. Then a pick-up truck pulling an empty trailer, driven by Bobby D. Bouldin, 63, of Plainview, Texas, collided its right passenger side into the trailer of the second semi, then collided with the Buick.

Several other vehicles became involved in secondary crashes as a result. In total, 10 vehicles were involved, according to CSP Trooper Graham Thorne.

Authorities closed the eastbound lanes of I-70 from Glenwood Springs to the east end of Glenwood Canyon. By 9:40 p.m., one eastbound lane was opened after crews moved the semi trucks.

Colorado Department of Transportation crews made a few sweeps through the canyon to plow the roadway, then opened both eastbound lanes at 11:04 p.m.

Salanga, driver of the first semi, was cited for careless driving.

Gypsum Fire also responded to the scene, and the Glenwood Springs Police Department assisted with the road closure. Big Steve's Towing, Lucas Towing, and Blaine Ward towing all responded to the scene to remove vehicles.

Motorists can call 511 or visit www.cotrip.org for current road condition information across the state.


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The Post Independent Updated Jan 29, 2013 11:48AM Published Jan 29, 2013 11:43AM Copyright 2013 The Post Independent. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.