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Caltrans warns against traveling to Sierra Nevada

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TAHOE, Calif. (KRON) – A stark warning to the public from Caltrans – The agency is cautioning against Bay Area travelers heading to the Sierra Nevada.

That’s because, in recent days, the mountains have seen record snowfall. The damage forced closures to Interstate 80 and Highway 50.

As of this morning, both routes are back open leading to Lake Tahoe but despite a break in the weather.

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Leisure travel is being discouraged, as bad as the weather has been in the Sierra this week and it has been bad.

“Stay off the roads — the conditions are treacherous,” Toks Omishakin said. 

South Lake Tahoe Mayor Devin Middlebrook says the area is now seeing a break.

“With sun on the horizon for the weekend, the next couple of days should be looking to be better for people to come up than they have been,” Middlebrook said. 

Still, for now, after a week of record snowfall, drivers should expect long delays with several back roads closed due to downed trees and power lines.

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“Obviously, we’ve had closures for the last several days, where both 50 and 80 were closed and you couldn’t get to the Tahoe basin. the roads have been extremely icy and snowy,” Middlebrook said. 

Chain controls have been dropped on Highway 50 and Interstate 80 but the California Department of Transportation says trips should be limited to essential travel while crews continue to clear roadways.

“If you have to make a critical trip, a critical trip, for work, an essential trip, it’s ok. But if it’s a trip just to hang out with family and friends, we’re saying stay off the roads,” Omishakin said. 

Keep in mind, another storm is expected early next week. Bring chains and keep your car fueled up.



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