Mudslides keep highway closed near Tahoe; I-80 still one lane between Reno, Truckee
SOUTH LAKE TAHOE, Calif. — Multiple mudslides have kept U.S. 50 closed between Strawberry and Pollock Pines for several days, and California Department of Transportation officials predict the highway will not reopen until Monday evening at the earliest.
Meanwhile, U.S. 50 remains closed east of Lake Tahoe on the Nevada side near Cave Rock. That closure, which stems from safety concerns in the wake of rockslides, was implemented this past Wednesday. There is no estimated time for reopening the highway, according to the Nevada Department of Transportation.
On the California side, heavy rain over the course of several days triggered a series of mudslides along U.S. 50 between Meyers and Placerville.
“Caltrans and an emergency contractor are working on three slides in a 12-mile area, and several smaller slides are also active near the highway,” a press release from Caltrans stated Sunday afternoon.
The third slide came down Saturday 2 miles east of Kyburz in a narrow two-lane section of U.S. 50. The slide, which has been slipping for several days, is about 400 feet long.
The press release form Caltrans stated this area of the highway would remain closed at least through Monday night and possibly longer.
Meanwhile, Interstate 80 between Reno and Truckee has been bogged down with traffic since Sunday morning due to a rockslide near the California/Nevada state line in Verdi. Only one westbound lane has been open because of emergency work.
The congestion, coupled with high amounts of weekend ski traffic through the Truckee/I-80 corridor, has made travel difficult; according to NDOT, crews expect to have the debris cleared by 10:30 a.m. Monday, although that could be delayed.
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The blaze grew to more than 50,000 acres as of Thursday morning but the Nevada Wildfire Information Map shows that figure could easily be at 60,000 acres.