More than 100 drivers rescued after mudslides close Colorado highway

More than 100 people have been rescued after a mudslide shut down a portion of a Colorado interstate.

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Update 12:55 p.m. EDT July 31: More than 100 drivers were stranded after mudslides shutdown portions of a Colorado highway.

Debris from wild fires that burned last August were carried onto Interstate 70 leaving some drivers trapped in a tunnel and others stranded.

“Twenty-nine motorists sheltered at the tunnel complex overnight,” state transportation officials said in a release. “In total, CDOT has accounted for 108 individuals who have now been either evacuated from Glenwood Canyon or have been moved to a safe place.”

Officials closed the interstate through the weekend.

Original report: Officials had not yet closed Interstate 70 through Glenwood Canyon before the storm moved in on Thursday, The Denver Post reported.

When the severe weather moved in, people were left stranded, able to take shelter in a tunnel, the Garfield County Sheriff’s Office said on Facebook.

Sheriff Lou Vallario Garfield County, Colorado NEWS RELEASE For...

Posted by Garfield County Sheriff's Office - Colorado on Friday, July 30, 2021

The sheriff’s office, transportation officials and the Glenwood Fire Department were able to get a local transit bus to the location to evacuate the people, the Colorado Springs Gazette reported.

Some of the people stranded in the tunnel were able to get their vehicles unstuck and follow the bus out of the canyon, while others rode the bus to a recreation center that had been converted into an emergency shelter.

Colorado Department of Transportation workers spent Friday removing debris and stranded vehicles.

The Glenwood Canyon frequently is the site of closures dues to flash-flooding and mudslides, especially since the Grizzly Creek fire that burned 32,000 acres last year, The Denver Post reported.

The same area was closed last week, the Gazette reported.

To avoid the area, drivers must take a more than 100-mile detour through northwest Colorado.

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