Flood watches in US West as mudslides close Colorado roads

Weather

This image provided by the Colorado Department of Transportation shows mud and debris on U.S. Highway 6, Sunday, Aug. 1, 2021 west of Silver Plume, Colo. Mudslides closed some Colorado highways as forecasters warned of potential flash flooding on Sunday across the Rocky Mountain and Great Basin regions. (Colorado Department of Transportation via AP)

DENVER, Colo. (AP) — Mudslides caused by rain left some Colorado highways impassable as forecasters warned of more flash flooding on Sunday across the Rocky Mountain and Great Basin regions.

Flash flood watches were issued for portions of Utah, Colorado, New Mexico, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, Oregon and Washington state.

The flood risk was elevated in areas where recent wildfires burned away vegetation and left hillsides more susceptible to erosion, the National Weather Service said.

A mudslide late Saturday shut down U.S. Highway 6 over Colorado’s Loveland Pass. It was expected to remain closed through Sunday and possibly longer as crews worked to clear away debris near Arapahoe Basin, the Colorado Department of Transportation said.

Crews continued removing debris left by mudslides on Interstate 70 in Glenwood Canyon, Colorado. The highway was closed after flash flooding caused debris to flow out of the burn scar from a recent wildfire in the Grizzly Creek area.

More than 100 people had to spend the night on the highway Thursday night, including nearly 30 who took refuge in a tunnel following the mudslides in western Colorado.

In Rock Springs, Wyoming nine adults and eight children received assistance after flooding on Saturday, the Red Cross said.

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