The weather is always changing along Interstate 70 and the weekend congestion in both summer and winter is constant. The Department of Transportation will enforce some new tire rules this winter to help ease the heavy traffic and accidents. Code 15 means that all passenger vehicles must have either full-blown snow tires, tires with a mud/snow designation or have four-wheel drive in order to proceed on the highway. All tires must have at least one-eighth inch of tread. During severe storms, the Department of Transportation will call for Code 16, which means every vehicle on the highway will have to have tire chains or a device call an Auto Sock. An Auto Sock is the easy to use textile cover designed to help vehicles get traction on snow and ice.
When the state officials make the calls about Code 15 and Code 16, motorists can be fined from $130 to $650 for not having the proper equipment especially if they block the roadway. For every minute a lane is closed it requires about five minutes to clear traffic. In the past, drivers thought the chain law only applied to truck drivers, now it applies to all passenger vehicles too.
In addition to the new tire laws to help ease traffic along Interstate 70, the state is rolling out a new express lane for eastbound traffic back to Denver. The express lane will be used on high-traffic days and motorists will pay a sliding toll rate to use the lane. The tolls start at $3.00 and go up to $30.00 depending on the demand. This is the first time in the nation something like this has been tried. It will be interesting to see where the price point falls being that it is demand-based.