The morning sun, in addition to the angle of Floyd Hill, can create a blinding glare for eastbound drivers. Each morning, the Colorado State Patrol and CDOT will collaborate in evaluating the roadway to determine if a closure is necessary.
This means that morning road closures can occur for up to an hour between exits 244 and 248, just east of Idaho Springs, because of intense sun glare. CDOT notes that the sun glare can also be an issue as far east as Genesee.
The early morning commute from sunrise to around 8:30 a.m. will likely be rerouted to U.S. 6 at exit 244 near Floyd Hill. From there, drivers can choose to continue on the road through Clear Creek Canyon or turn onto U.S. 40 and return to the interstate at exit 248.
On Monday, CDOT had its first closure of the season due to sun glare. According to the department, eastbound I-70 was closed from Exit 243- Hidden Valley to Exit 244- U.S. 6 due to sun glare. Drivers were asked to detour onto U.S. 40.
The highway was reopened at 8 a.m.
CDOT will notify drivers of the closure with messages on electronic signboards before Floyd Hill. Drivers who travel on I-70 early in the morning are also asked to check out travel alerts on CDOT’s website.
Sun glare safety tips
Drivers should consider adjusting eastbound travel plans to before sunrise or later in the morning if possible. If plans can’t be adjusted, here are some additional safety tips provided by CDOT.
- Make sure your windshield is clean – inside and out
- Ensure your vehicle has plenty of windshield wiper fluid
- Wear a good pair of sunglasses to provide shading
- Adjust your speed to avoid sudden reactions
- Let off the accelerator and slow down gradually instead of slamming on the brakes
Sun glare will be an issue for drivers from November to February.