UPDATED: US 40 between Craig and Steamboat has reopened | CraigDailyPress.com

UPDATED: US 40 between Craig and Steamboat has reopened

Flooding at the bridge over Dry Creek on the west end of Hayden shut down U.S. Highway 40 early Thursday, April 13, 2023.
Colorado Department of Transportation/Courtesy photo

This story was updated at 1:15 p.m.

Highway 40 between Craig and Steamboat has reopened in both directions following an extended closure throughout the morning of Thursday, April 13, due to flooding.

Officials with the Colorado Department of Transportation report that floodwaters are receding in Hayden, and crews will continue to assess conditions. CDOT added that a safety closure may be necessary on another section of U.S. 40 farther east, as CDOT may need to close U.S. 40 over Berthoud Pass due to avalanche conditions.

U.S. Highway 40 was closed between Steamboat Springs and Craig on Thursday morning due to flooding that also closed a number of roads within Hayden.

According to COTrip, the highway was closed for 38 miles from mile marker 92 just outside of Craig to mile marker 132 to the west of Steamboat Springs. This closure stretched between Downhill Drive in Steamboat and Walker Street in Craig.

The closure was largely due to flooding at the bridge over Dry Creek on the west side of Hayden, according to the Colorado Department of Transportation.

“Crews are focused on getting emergency services and school buses through the closure as best they can right now,” Elise Thatcher, a communications manager with CDOT, said Thursday morning. “We will have an engineer reviewing the flooding, and then we will know more about the status of the roadway.”

Flooding along Dry Creek in Hayden has also closed the town’s parks, the school property and several streets in town, according to an early morning news release from Town Manager Mathew Mendisco.

“All parks have been closed, as well as school, due to dangers of flooding, and the town is working to shut down certain roads within town as a precaution,” Mendisco wrote. “Please try and avoid theses road sections, if possible, through town until further notice, which include Third Street, Fourth Street, Poplar Street at the Fairgrounds and areas that border Dry Creek on the southwest parts of town.”

The National Weather Service has issued a flood advisory for Hayden that extends until Saturday, April 15.

The town has set up a sandbag station at the Hayden Police Department for residents who may need sandbags, and crews are out working to mitigate areas they can until flooding recedes, according to the release.

The Hayden Center has been set up as a place for people to go if they need to evacuate their homes due to flooding. If someone needs assistance evacuating, they should call 911 or the Hayden Center during normal business hours at 970-276-3741.

“It is not safe to remain in your home if flooding is coming into your home,” Mendisco wrote.

Yampa Valley Electric Association said in a news release that some of their equipment is partially submerged, but that it is designed to withstand flooding conditions. The co-op warned that people should stay away from any equipment that is partially or entirely submerged in flood waters and to avoid any power poles with water rushing around them.

Emergency management officials are in contact with Yampa Valley Electric and they are ready to turn off power if needed, but as of now there are no reported outages.

U.S. 40 closed east of Craig to downtown Hayden around 3 a.m. The closure was expanded to between Craig and Steamboat around 4:30 a.m.

With a high of 56 degrees forecasted in Steamboat Springs and 57 degrees in Hayden on Thursday, flooding may continue as snow rapidly melts. For more updates, look to Hayden’s Facebook page and sign up for Routt County Alerts.

This story will be updated as more information becomes available.

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