The National Weather Service (NWS) has issued a winter storm warning effective noon Monday through 6 a.m. Thursday advising the public of difficult mountain travel due to heavy snow and gusty winds. Snow levels will start relatively low, rising to 4,500 to 5,500 feet Tuesday and to 5,000 to 6,000 feet Wednesday. Five to eight feet of snow is possible at mountain pass levels with whiteout conditions from high winds.
In the valley moderate to heavy rainfall is anticipated Monday through Wednesday with totals of 2 to 6 inches. Motorists should be alert for flooding and potential debris flow in Camp Fire burn scar areas.
Delays and longer travel times are anticpated due to inclement weather conditions. Chain controls on Interstate 80 over Donner Summit, on U.S. Highway 50 over Echo Summit and on other Sierra mountain roadways should be anticipated Monday through Thursday. Highway closures due to safety concerns may also be a possibility in the region: Interstate 80, U.S. Highway 50 and State Routes 20, 28, 49, 89 and 267.
Caltrans reminds drivers to check that tires are properly inflated and have a good tread, and to stock vehicles with water, blankets, snacks, a flashlight and a full tank of gas before mountain travel. Further tips for safe winter driving and information about chain controls can be found at http://www.dot.ca.gov/cttravel/winter.html.
Check out Caltrans’ “QuickMap” for current road conditions and chain requirements at http://quickmap.dot.ca.gov. For real-time traffic, download the QuickMap app on iTunes or Google Play. Motorists also can use the California Highway Information Network automated phone service by calling 1-800-427-ROAD (7623).