No explosives found in vehicle that closed I-70 in Silverthorne

Colorado state troopers and the Jefferson County Sheriff bomb squad investigate a vehicle on I-70 on Saturday. The interstate was closed for about an hour while authorities followed up on a report of explosives in a vehicle.
Photo from Colorado State Patrol

Both directions of Interstate 70 reopened at about 5:30 p.m. Saturday, May 8, after a more than three-hour closure about 3 miles west of the Eisenhower Tunnel due to a police investigation, according to a tweet from the Colorado State Patrol.

Colin Remillard, a public information officer for Colorado State Patrol, said the incident involved the report of an explosive device in a vehicle.

The interstate was closed “out of an abundance of caution due to a report of an incendiary/explosive device in a vehicle,” State Patrol trooper Jacob Best said.

Best said the Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office bomb squad “gave it the all clear” at about 5:30 p.m.

Best later told the Vail Daily that the initial report of explosives proved to be untrue, and was suspected to have occurred as a result of a driver suffering from a severe anxiety disorder or dementia.

Summit County’s Systemwide Mental Assessment Response Team — otherwise known as the SMART team — responded and provided specialized knowledge for the incident.

According to State Patrol spokespeople, someone called one of the passengers in the vehicle and then called authorities after the passenger indicated there was an explosive device in the car.

Best said the statement was assumed to be legitimate in the moment, as “he was well convinced, and provided a lot of detailed information initially, so out of an abundance of caution, we treated it as such” and shut down the interstate.

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