Snow and holiday trade could make I-15 by Virgin River Gorge a nightmare

Driving by construction on a Virgin River Gorge has been a con for I-15 motorists for a past few months, though it could get a lot worse this week.

The National Weather Service has released a winter charge warning for Arizona’s northwest plateau that includes a territory of a gorge.

According to a NWS, complicated sleet is approaching with sum accumulations reaching 12 to 24 inches during aloft elevations and with breeze gusts of adult to 45 miles per hour.

Because a warning will take outcome from Wednesday morning to Saturday morning, it will expected impact Thanksgiving travel.

Just a few years ago in early 2013, a identical conditions with severe continue happened where about 300 motorists were stranded in a fill overnight after 10 inches of sleet and several inches of ice forced Arizona Highway Patrol to tighten a freeway.

Between midnight on Saturday, Dec. 7 and late Sunday, Dec. 8, a Utah Highway Patrol responded to 86 accidents, slide-offs and other incidents, an “extreme” series on a given night, pronounced Lt. Shawn Hinton, territory commander for a UHP during a time.

To equivocate a identical conditions this year, a Arizona Department of Public Safety and a Arizona Department of Transportation are recommending that people try to equivocate roving on Thanksgiving and heading into a weekend.

“We’re doing a lot of media and interviews where we are not recommending transport during all to northern Arizona, generally on Thanksgiving Day and on into Friday since that’s when a misfortune will hit,” pronounced Bart Graves, AZDPS open information officer. “Just a good order of ride is that if we have to be on a highway by high elevations that will be strike by sleet that we move adequate supplies only in box we are stranded there, so a entirely charged dungeon phone, water, food, whatever we need. But the best order of ride is that we just don’t suggest transport from Thursday on.”

How to stay protected while drivi

If we contingency travel, there are resources that people driving over a subsequent few days should keep in mind as they strike a road.

AZDPS and ADOT are teaming up in expectation of severe continue to transparent roads for holiday travelers.

“When it comes to inauspicious continue conditions and charge systems that are going to be relocating into Arizona, we’ll work really closely with a partners during ADOT who will move in plows to keep a roads clear,” Graves said.

Graves pronounced there might be some brief closures in or nearby a fill to keep a roads accessible for use.

“What we’ll do is stop trade to concede them to do that so people can have correct routes in and out of a fill area,” Graves said. “Normally we’ll tighten a highway when a charge complement is producing so most flood that a plows can’t keep adult with it and it’s too dangerous for travel. Sometimes in those situations, there will be periodic closures and afterwards re-openings so when there are re-openings, we’ll chaperon people by a area.”

Staying on tip of live trade by checking, a website that provides up-to-the-minute trade and movement information for a state of Arizona, is one of them.

“I would suggest going to since they have present highway conditions all over a state so if you’re sitting on a prolonged transport transport by car, before we set out, make certain certain you’re checking that website for a latest highway conditions and highway closures that could save we a lot of time and frustration,” Graves said.

More critical than any website or resource, Graves says staying warning and remaining studious when pushing are critical to gripping yourself and those around we protected over a holidays.

“If we have to be on that highway to expostulate really delicately and adjust your speed to a conditions since people will still speed in these conditions not meaningful that when a conditions factors change unexpected on a roadway, they can’t stop in time and that’s how collisions occur and people get stuck.” Graves said. “People are always in a precipitate so only delayed down and take your time and you’ll get there though you’ll get there safely and your automobile won’t get banged up.”

Follow contributor Terell Wilkins on Twitter, @SpeedyVeritas, call him at 252-367-8463 or email him at

More associated news

  • Thanksgiving sleet in St. George? Get prepared for a severe Utah transport week
  • New overpass improvements to move extensive highway closures to Virgin River Gorge
  • Black Friday keeps draining into Thanksgiving. Here’s what stores devise to open early

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