Interstate 80 traffic backed up for miles because of snowstorm, road conditions
A fast-moving snowstorm appeared to catch westbound Interstate 80 motorists by surprise, and has stymied traffic along the heavily traveled thoroughfare on Sunday evening, Feb. 18.
The interstate was backed up for miles east of Boreal Ski Resort. At one point, the line of vehicles extended well past the Donner Pass Road turnoff for Truckee.
Westbound motorists were also lined up for more than a mile on Donner Pass Road, as they attempted to access the interstate near the on-ramp across from the Shell service station in the 12000 block of the road.
Donner Summit Rest Area’s flags whipping in the high winds occurring in the mountains tonight. Blowing snow creates limited visibility for motorists. Chain controls remain from Stateline to Nyack – trucks MAX. Take it slow! pic.twitter.com/V5B7bVmvwj
— Caltrans District 3 (@CaltransDist3) February 19, 2018
Motorists attempting to get to Tahoe Donner found some relief by accessing Donner Trail Road, and then making their way up to Northwoods Boulevard via backroads.
But one motorist who was heading down Donner Trail Road toward Donner Pass Road earlier Sunday evening apparently lost control of the vehicle he was driving, and ended up in a ditch near the Aspens at Truckee apartment complex entrance. The motorist said he was not injured, and was waiting for a tow truck to pull his small-sized car out of the ditch.
Westbound traffic on the interstate was being turned at the Nevada state line because of spinouts on the highway, the California Department of Transportation said on Sunday evening. Motorists are advised to use an alternate route.
Chains are also required on all vehicles, except 4-wheel drive vehicles with snow tires on all four wheels, from Nyack Road in Placer County to the Nevada state line on I-80.
The traffic jam was a result of a storm that dumped more than 2 inches of snow in short order on Sunday afternoon, with more being added to the mix on Sunday evening.
The National Weather Service Office in Reno has also issued a winter weather advisory for Truckee and Lake Tahoe until 10 p.m. Sunday. Additional snow accumulation of up to 2 inches is expected.