Colorado lawmakers propose stricter traction rules for I-70 driving

DENVER -- Under a proposed bill at the Colorado General Assembly, proper snow equipment and tires would be mandated along Interstate 70 in the mountains for most of the year.

HB 1207 would mandate drivers -- between Labor Day and Memorial Day -- have proper tread on their tires and driving equipment when traveling along I-70 between Morrison and Dotsero in Eagle County.

The bill raises the tread threshold to 3/16ths of an inch and allows for citations at any time during those nine months.

Currently, law enforcement can only cite drivers for improper tread and driving equipment during a snowstorm when I-70 is restricted.

In addition to proper tread, vehicles would have to be all-wheel drive or four-wheel drive.

If a vehicle is not one of those drive types, the driver must have chains or similar technology.

“When they don’t have the proper tires, they spin out and cause massive traffic jams,” said Rep. Dylan Roberts (D-Eagle).

Roberts is a sponsor of the bipartisan legislation.

While the bill does not mandate “tire checkpoints,” Roberts tells FOX31 those could be a possibility before a snowstorm starts.

“Let’s let the drivers that are ready to go, go through and on their way no matter what the weather is and stop the drivers who aren’t prepared,” Roberts said.

The bill is expected to be heard in a House Committee in the coming weeks.

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