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How this week's snow could impact Denver drivers

The National Weather Service warned incoming snow will impact roads starting Tuesday night through the Wednesday morning commute.

DENVER — The National Weather Service (NWS) in Boulder warned incoming winter weather will impact roads starting Tuesday night through the Wednesday evening commutes.

The heaviest of the snow will likely fall before dawn Wednesday, with heavy snow at times through the Wednesday morning commute. Snow will continue throughout the day Wednesday, meaning roads will likely stay slick most (if not all) of the day.

This new round is expected to bring several inches of snow to the Denver metro area and more than a foot to some mountain areas. NWS has issued Winter Storm Warnings, Winter Weather Advisories and Winter Storm Watches in Colorado.

A Winter Storm Warning includes Denver from 5 p.m. Tuesday through 5 p.m. Wednesday.

Travel may become difficult due to heavy snowfall on roadways from Tuesday afternoon through Wednesday afternoon. The hazardous conditions could impact the Wednesday morning and Wednesday evening commutes.

Visit here for the most up to date closures.

NWS released a graphic showing where and when travel could be impacted and the expected severity:

The only major impacts NWS is expecting will be in the northeast plains between 6 a.m. and noon. Moderate impacts are forecasted between 6 p.m. and midnight Tuesday, and noon and 6 p.m. Wednesday.

Many other areas are expected to see moderate impacts Tuesday evening through Wednesday evening.

The worst impacts in the Denver metro and Palmer Divide areas are forecasted to take place between 6 p.m. Tuesday and Noon Wednesday.

The foothills are expected to see the worst impacts between 6 p.m. Tuesday and 6 a.m. Wednesday.

The Fort Collins area should see the worst impacts between 6 a.m. and noon Wednesday.

No other area is expected to see more than minor impacts, according to NWS.

FORECAST: Full forecast
CLOSURES: Full list of closures
ALERTS: Latest Colorado weather alerts


Closures and speeds on Colorado roads:

Know before you go and check out COtrip.org for the latest road conditions.

Latest road conditions

Colorado chain and traction laws

The CDOT urged travelers to be aware of chain and traction law codes before heading out on the roadway:

  • Code 18/Commercial Chain Law: Commercial vehicles and trucks must have chains. Vehicles without chains can often lose traction, causing traffic delays and sometimes road closures. For the safety of the traveling public, it's critical to use chains to comply with Colorado's chain law.
  • Code 15/Passenger Traction Law: All passenger vehicles must have appropriate all-weather tires with 3/16-inch depth. Vehicles must have one of the following: winter tires, tires with mud/snow (M+S) designation, chains or alternative traction devices such as an autosock. 4WD and AWD vehicles must have winter tires or all-weather tires.
  • Code 16/Passenger Chain Law: All passenger vehicles need chains, except for 4WD and AWD vehicles with all-weather tires with 3/16-inch tread depth.

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