Colorado Gov. Jared Polis issues disaster declaration for Glenwood Canyon
Declaration allows for use of Colorado National Guard in traffic control, cleanup
Gov. Jared Polis issued a disaster declaration Friday for Glenwood Canyon following numerous mud slides that have closed Interstate 70 since July 29.
“The disaster declaration authorizes the use of the Colorado National Guard for traffic control and debris removal,” a release from the Governor’s office states. “Additionally, the declaration activates the State’s Emergency Operations Plan and enables state agencies to better coordinate their response while also providing additional funds to respond to the damage and repairs needed in areas affected by burn scar flooding and slides.”
Torrential rains caused a “500-year event” in the wake of last year’s Grizzly Creek Fire, leading to significant mud slides throughout the canyon. I-70 could remain closed for weeks.
The Colorado Department of Transportation has an incident command team in place to “manage roadway operations for the incident — a model that was successfully utilized in major incidents like the 2013 floods,” which caused devastation along the Front Range.