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CDOT 'metering' delays mountain traffic

11:06 PM, Jan 24, 2010   |    comments
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We use "on her way" loosely.  9NEWS talked to Cirspell while she was parked along eastbound I-70.

The Colorado Department of Transportation was stopping traffic for 20 minutes at a time. It's a practice called metering and CDOT says it's been in place for years.

"When traffic starts to back into the tunnel, we get gridlock and then we're afraid if there's an emergency or an accident or something, we can't get emergency vehicles in to help people," said Stacey Stegman, CDOT spokeswoman. "So we want to give time for traffic to clear and then we can allow traffic to move again."

Giles Horrocks has been living in the area for 16 years. He's never heard of metering.

"This traffic is outrageous," he said. "This is surprising to me that they're closing it down or metering traffic. I'm all for safety, safety is the key. But I have no warning coming up to this."

CDOT is using lit traffic signs to alert drivers. But most are still stuck, waiting for their turn through the Eisenhower.

"We want to make sure that we can move people in and out in any circumstance," Stegman said. "Yeah it causes some problems, a bit of a bummer for anybody that's stuck in that gridlock, but please know it's for good reason."

(KUSA-TV © 2010 Multimedia Holdings Corporation)

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