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Thursday, December 30, 2010

Winter storm, multi-car accident close Beeline

Storm photos from Channel 3 News.  For a complete slide show of storm photos, go to www.azfamily.com 

By Jim Keyworth
Gazette Editor

The winter storm pummeling the Rim Country is causing havoc on major highways.

The Arizona Department of Transportation (ADOT) announced that northbound Arizona Highway 87 is closed at milepost 254, north of Payson, due to snow and multiple crashes. According to former Gazette Editor and Pine resident Carol La Valley, a multi-car accident involving as many as 20-30 vehicles occurred Wednesday afternoon.

Chains and four-wheel drive are required for motorists heading east out of town on Arizona Highway 260.

For complete details on closures and restrictions for highways 87 and 260 and other major Arizona highways, see the summary at the end of this story.

ADOT also closed State Route 89A between Sedona and Flagstaff Wednesday afternoon. ADOT says the highway will remain closed at least until Thursday afternoon.

Traffic is also restricted on Interstate 17 at Stoneman Lake about 15 miles north of Camp Verde. Heavy tow trucks were en route Thursday morning to help clear the roadway.

After 80 vehicle slide-offs and over 40 crashes, the Arizona Department of Public Safety (DOS) closed all northbound and southbound traffic on Interstate 17 near Flagstaff just after 6 p.m. Wednesday due to hazardous travel conditions. There is no estimate on when DOS might be able to reopen I-17. They say the situation is bad and getting worse.

The storm, which arrived early Wednesday morning and is impacting most all of Arizona, is expected to move out Thursday. Snowfall totals in northern Arizona could be as high as high as two feet.

Phoenix is expected to receive up to 1 inch of rain, but with snow levels expected to drop to about 2,000 feet Thursday, northern parts of the Valley could see some snow as well.

Temperatures are expected to drop dramatically as the storm moves through the state with readings below freezing New Years Eve.


LATEST PRESS RELEASE FROM ADOT WITH CLOSURE UPDATES

I-40 closed across Northern Arizona

December 30, 2010
PHOENIX — As winter weather descends on Northern Arizona, the Arizona Department of Transportation is announcing the following highway closure:
  • Interstate 40 stretching through Kingman, Flagstaff and Holbrook (milepost 71 to 250) has been closed in both directions due to winter driving conditions.
  • I-17 northbound remains closed north of State Route 179. Traffic at this time is being diverted to southbound I-17. Drivers are advised to detour in advance or delay travels to avoid congestion at the turnaround.
  • I-17 southbound is closed at Airport Road, about two miles south of Flagstaff. Traffic is being rerouted back to the north. Travel south from Flagstaff at this time is not recommended; no reopen time has been established.
  • State Route 89A remains closed from Pumphouse Wash at milepost 386 to Forest Highlands Road at milepost 397 due to winter conditions and resource allocation.
ADOT strongly advises drivers to delay all travel through Thursday or until roadway and weather conditions improve. Commercial vehicles blocking travel lanes are making access by ADOT snowplows difficult, delaying the clearance of snow and ice.
Before heading out on the roads, drivers are encouraged to call 5-1-1 or log on to ADOT's Traveler Information Center at www.az511.gov for the latest highway conditions around the state, or follow on Twitter @ArizonaDOT. The website features images along state highways that give drivers a glimpse of weather conditions in various regions. Driver safety tips are available from ADOT at KnowSnow.

Additional Arizona Road Conditions | Winter Storm Alert
The following list from the Arizona Department of Transportation details road conditions for State and US Highways in Arizona that are affected by the current Winter Storm Conditions as of 11:59 p.m. on Wednesday, December 29, 2010.

Conditions during storm events often change rapidly so this list may not be all-inclusive. Travelers are advised to avoid all affected roads unless travel is absolutely necessary. Ongoing information is also available from the Arizona Department of Transportation at az511.com.

UPDATE: State Route 87 : Winter Storm Road Conditions:
State route 87 is closed from Payson to Heber-Overgaard because of snow
Snow or Ice reported on roadway - USE EXTREME CAUTION
On State Route 87, NS-bound from mile post 254.50, at HOUSTON MESA ROAD to mile post 264.0, 3.70 miles South of PINE
from Wed, 29 Dec 2010 3:18 PM to Thu, 30 Dec 2010 5:00 AM

On State Route 87, South-bound from mile post 290.0, 0.10 miles North of CLINTS WELL to mile post 317.0, 7.20 miles North of ELKS PICNIC GROUNDS from Wed, 29 Dec 2010 8:00 PM to Thu, 30 Dec 2010 6:00 AM

on State Route 87, On State Route 87, NS-bound from mile post 261.0, 6.50 miles North of HOUSTON MESA ROAD to mile post 340.0, 0.40 miles North of WINSLOW from Wed, 29 Dec 2010 7:16 AM to Thu, 30 Dec 2010 4:00 PM

UPDATE: State Route 260 : Winter Storm Conditions
State Route 260 is closed from Payson to Heber-Overgaard beacuse of snow
Snow or Ice reported on roadway - USE EXTREME CAUTION
On State Route 260, EW-bound from mile post 357.70, 0.20 miles East of SR 73 to mile post 377.46, at SR 273 from Wed, 29 Dec 2010 10:10 AM to Fri, 31 Dec 2010 12:10 PM

On State Route 260, EW-bound from mile post 325.20, 0.80 miles East of CLAY SPRINGS to mile post 340.10, at U S 60 rom Wed, 29 Dec 2010 10:09 AM to Fri, 31 Dec 2010 12:09 PM

On State Route 260, EW-bound from mile post 341.64, 1.40 miles West of SHOW LOW to mile post 357.70, 0.20 miles East of SR 73 from Wed, 29 Dec 2010 10:08 AM to Fri, 31 Dec 2010 12:08 PM

On State Route 260, EW-bound from mile post 302.70, 2.90 miles West of SR 277 to mile post 325.20, 0.80 miles East of CLAY SPRINGS from Wed, 29 Dec 2010 10:07 AM to Fri, 31 Dec 2010 12:07 PM

On State Route 260, EW-bound from mile post 251.80, at SR 87 to mile post 303.0, 2.60 miles West of SR 277 from Wed, 29 Dec 2010 9:09 AM to Thu, 30 Dec 2010 5:00 AM

On State Route 260, EW-bound from mile post 377.46, at SR 273 to mile post 398.67, at U S 180 from Wed, 29 Dec 2010 6:55 PM to Thu, 30 Dec 2010 6:30 PM

UPDATE: Interstate 40: Winter Storm Conditions
Interstate 40 is closed in both directions from milepost 71 to milepost 250 (Kingman-Flagstaff-Holbrook)
On Interstate 40, EW-bound from mile post 333.30, at U S 191 NORTH to mile post 359.60, at NEW MEXICO STATE LINE from Wed, 29 Dec 2010 6:58 PM to Thu, 30 Dec 2010 6:30 AM

State Route 64 : Winter Storm Conditions
Snow or Ice reported on roadway - USE EXTREME CAUTION
On State Route 64, EW-bound from mile post 186.0, 0.50 miles East of WILLIAMS to mile post 237.0, 4.59 miles West of GRAND CANYON

State Route 73 : Winter Storm Conditions
Snow or Ice reported on roadway - USE EXTREME CAUTION
On State Route 73, NS-bound from mile post 351.10, 6.50 miles South of U S 260 to mile post 357.70, at U S 260 from Wed, 29 Dec 2010 10:14 AM to Fri, 31 Dec 2010 12:14 PM

State Route 77 : Winter Storm Conditions
Snow or Ice reported on roadway - USE EXTREME CAUTION
On State Route 77, NS-bound from mile post 342.20, at U S 60 to mile post 361.10, at SNOWFLAKE from Wed, 29 Dec 2010 10:13 AM to Fri, 31 Dec 2010 12:13 PM

On State Route 77, NS-bound from mile post 140.0, 5.30 miles North of WINKELMAN to mile post 170.0, 0.80 miles South of U S 70 from Wed, 29 Dec 2010 7:42 PM to Thu, 30 Dec 2010 5:00 AM

State Route 89 : Winter Storm Conditions
Snow or Ice reported on roadway - USE EXTREME CAUTION
Winter Storm Alert on State Route 89, NS-bound from mile post 345.0, 13.70 miles North of CHINO VALLEY to mile post 363.80, at I 40 from Wed, 29 Dec 2010 6:48 PM to Thu, 30 Dec 2010 8:00 AM

State Route Alternate 89 : Winter Storm Conditions
*IMPASSABLE / ROAD CLOSED*
On State Route Alternate 89, NS-bound from mile post 386.50, 0.70 miles North of Cave Springs Campground to mile post 397.0, 0.10 miles South of Forest Highlands Dr from Wed, 29 Dec 2010 2:19 PM to Thu, 30 Dec 2010 4:00 PM

Snow or Ice reported on roadway:
On State Route Alternate 89, NS-bound from mile post 378.0, 0.10 miles South of Old Indian Rd to mile post 399.0, at I-17 from Wed, 29 Dec 2010 1:16 PM to Thu, 30 Dec 2010 4:00 PM

On State Route Alternate 89, NS-bound from mile post 335.0, 3.0 miles North of Forest Service Rd 643 to mile post 338.0, 1.0 miles South of Forest Service Rd 503 from Wed, 29 Dec 2010 9:36 AM to Thu, 30 Dec 2010 4:00 PM

On State Route Alternate 89, NS-bound from mile post 351.0, 0.10 miles South of Verde Heights Dr to mile post 399.0, at I-17 from Wed, 29 Dec 2010 7:12 AM to Thu, 30 Dec 2010 4:00 PM

State Route 261 : Winter Storm Conditions
Impassable / Road Closed on State Route 261, NS-bound from mile post 407.90, 4.50 miles South of SR 260 to mile post 395.0, 0.60 miles North of SR 273 from Wed, 29 Dec 2010 11:35 AM to Mon, 2 May 2011 1:35 PM - Road closed for winter.

State Route 264 : Winter Storm Conditions
Snow or Ice reported on roadway - USE EXTREME CAUTION
On State Route 264, EW-bound from mile post 404.0, 7.10 miles West of Bia006 to mile post 418.0, 6.80 miles East of Bia006 from Wed, 29 Dec 2010 8:19 PM to Thu, 30 Dec 2010 6:19 AM

On State Route 264, EW-bound from mile post 417.60, 6.40 miles East of Bia006 to mile post 445.50, 1.30 miles West of US-191 South from Wed, 29 Dec 2010 5:17 PM to Thu, 30 Dec 2010 5:00 AM

State Route 273 : Winter Storm Conditions
*IMPASSABLE / ROAD CLOSED*
On State Route 273, NS-bound from mile post 382.90, 1.50 miles South of SUNRISE SKI AREA to mile post 396.90, at END SR 273 from Wed, 29 Dec 2010 11:38 AM to Mon, 2 May 2011 1:38 PM
Road closed for winter.

State Route 277 : Winter Storm Conditions
Snow or Ice reported on roadway - USE EXTREME CAUTION
On State Route 277, NS-bound from mile post 306.0, 0.30 miles North of SR 260 to mile post 336.40, at SR 77 from Wed, 29 Dec 2010 10:11 AM to Fri, 31 Dec 2010 12:11 PM

US Highway 60 : Winter Storm Conditions
Snow or Ice reported on roadway - USE EXTREME CAUTION
On US Highway 60, EW-bound from mile post 353.1, 0.10 miles East of SR 61 to mile post 401.97, at New Mexico State Line from Wed, 29 Dec 2010 6:49 PM to Thu, 30 Dec 2010 6:30 PM

US Highway 89 : Winter Storm Conditions
Snow or Ice reported on roadway - USE EXTREME CAUTION
On US Highway 89, NS-bound from mile post 431.0, 0.60 miles North of SUNSET CRATER RD to mile post 420.0, 1.60 miles North of FLAGSTAFF from Wed, 29 Dec 2010 7:00 AM to Thu, 30 Dec 2010 4:00 PM

US Highway 180 : Winter Storm Conditions
Snow or Ice reported on roadway - USE EXTREME CAUTION
On US Highway 180, EW-bound from mile post 400.61, 0.10 miles East of US-60 / Main St to mile post 433.26, at New Mexico State Line from Wed, 29 Dec 2010 7:14 PM to Thu, 30 Dec 2010 6:30 PM

On US Highway 180, EW-bound from mile post 265.0, 0.70 miles West of SR-64 to mile post 250.0, 1.70 miles East of Cedar Ranch Rd from Wed, 29 Dec 2010 1:45 PM to Thu, 30 Dec 2010 4:00 PM

US Highway 191 : Winter Storm Conditions
Snow or Ice reported on roadway - USE EXTREME CAUTION
On US Highway 191, NS-bound from mile post 225.1, at FH084 to mile post 253.74, at US-180 from Wed, 29 Dec 2010 7:12 PM to Thu, 30 Dec 2010 6:30 PM

On US Highway 191, NS-bound from mile post 225.1, at FH084 to mile post 253.74, at US-180 from Wed, 29 Dec 2010 7:12 PM to Thu, 30 Dec 2010 6:30 PM

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