Snow tire rule wins Senate approval
The Colorado Senate has approved a bill requiring winter drivers to have snow-appropriate tires during winter months on Colorado’s mountain roads.
The bill, co-sponsored by Rep. Bob Rankin, R-Carbondale, would require all motorists without four-wheel drive to use tires rated for snow conditions or carry chains or cables during snowy months. The requirement already applies to commercial vehicles.
The bill originally set the requirement for Interstate 70 between Morrison and Dotsero. Senators amended the bill to apply to other mountain highways, too, potentially endangering the bill’s prospects.
One more vote is required in the Senate. The measure would then return the House, which approved the bill earlier but in a different form.
Beyond safety issues, I-70 closures are costly to commerce and tourism and are often caused by drivers with bad tires, Vail Mayor Andy Daly told Colorado Mountain News Media last year. Daly said that last winter, 22 road closures on Vail Pass were caused by private vehicles, 18 of which had no snow tires or bad tires.
“I think it’s an important bill,” Rankin said last month. “It lets us educate the public.”
Among those in favor of the original bill were the Colorado State Patrol, Colorado Department of Transportation, and trucking and ski industry representatives. No one testified against it.
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