Snow-tire bill gets traction in House |

Snow-tire bill gets traction in House

Alex Vasse uses the scraper end of her snow brush to clear some of the ice and snow off the windshield of her Dodge Dart after a late winter storm abated Thursday, Feb. 26, 2015, in Denver. Forecasters are predicting several more inches of snow will fall from yet another system during the day, which will complicate travel even more for motorists dealing with the ice-packed roads in and around the Mile High City. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)

On the heels of a snowstorm that caused spinouts that closed Interstate 70 in both directions on Wednesday, a bill to reduce the number of wintertime traffic tie-ups on the mountain portions of I-70 won voice-vote approval in the House Thursday morning.

HB15-1173, sponsored by Reps. Diane Mitsch Bush, D-Steamboat Springs, and Bob Rankin, R-Carbondale, would clarify the current chain law. Causing an accident or highway closure when the chain law is in effect may result in fines ranging from $100 to $500. But there is much confusion about when and whether passenger vehicles must comply.

This bill specifies that from Nov. 1 to May 15, and from Morrrison to Dotsero, passenger vehicles must have adequate tread depth on their tires or carry chains or other traction devices.

It would not create checkpoints or new fines.

“This bill is not just a public safety measure,” Mitsch Bush said. “It will reduce economic losses that cost our state an estimated $143 million in 2014.”

After a recorded vote, the bill will go to the Senate.

— Summit Daily staff report

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