Close up of snow tires on snowy road

We as Coloradoans are very familiar with experiencing multiple seasons of weather in a single day, and just as we layer our clothing for protection, we should be prepared to protect ourselves as fall weather turns to winter when in our vehicles and on our roadways.

In August 2019, Colorado legislators updated legislation requirements for drivers using state highways during winter months.  In particular, the legislature mandated use of tire chains or an alternate traction device when icy or snow packed conditions exist on the highway.  It changed the required minimum tire tread for four-wheel or all-wheel drive vehicles on snow roads to 3/16ths of an inch for tires that are adequate for all weather conditions.  Manufacturer imprinted tires with a mountain-snowflake, “MS”, “M+S” or “M/S” symbols or all-weather rated by the manufactures with a 3/16ths inch tread are also permissible.  Control of when and whether these restrictions go into effect is held by local authorities in conjunction with the Colorado Department of Transportation, which regulates and has the authority to close any portion of a state highway to public travel for safety. CDOT’s Chain Law

Some Definitions

“Alternate traction device” means a device that is approved by the Colorado department of transportation as capable of providing traction comparable to that of metal chains or tire cables under similar conditions.  These include: wheel sanders, pneumatically driven chains, or textile traction device (TTD)

“Tire chains” means metal chains consisting of two circular metal loops, one on each side of the tire, connected by no fewer than nine evenly spaced chains across the tire thread.  

The public is made aware of when these requirements and closures are being imposed through use of temporary or electronic signs.  Drivers should be on the lookout for these signs on the highway at any time of year but specifically from September 1 through May 31 of each year along interstate 70 between milepost 133 (Dotsero) and milepost 259 (Morrison).  It is unlawful—illegal—to proceed to drive when a state highway is closed or when a restriction is in effect without the required equipment.

The Colorado Department of Transportation has many resources including answers to Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) HERE

Commercial Vehicles:

Special rules apply to commercial vehicles with four or more drive wheels, other than a bus, and commercial drivers shall affix tire chains to at least four of the drive wheels of the vehicle when so required, and drivers of busses shall affix tire chains to at least two of the drive wheels of the bus when so required.  A commercial driver’s failure to do so while operating a commercial vehicle when the requirement is in effect could subject him/herself to enhanced violation penalties under the statute.  Two operators actively traveling to- or from- a site to tow a motor vehicle or while towing a motor vehicle are exempted from enhanced penalties.  Tire Chain Requirements

For Chain Up Tips for Commercial Vehicles and Drivers, check out:

https://www.codot.gov/library/Brochures/ChainTips.pdf

Penalties:

Any person who violates the statute can be charged with committing a class B traffic infraction.

Any commercial driver who violates the statute can be charged with a traffic infraction, be subjected to fines and surcharges for blocking the highway as a result of not chaining up.

If you have been involved in a car accident on the highways while chain laws were in effect and you were injured, you should contact an attorney at Bell & Pollock, P.C. We can review your case and answer your questions about chain laws, discuss any recourse you might have against the other driver, as well as review your financial options.  Call Today!

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Call a trusted attorney at Bell & Pollock, P.C. at (303) 795-5900 to get on the road to recovery now. You can also email our firm via the contact firm on this page.

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Case Results

WE KNOW HOW TO WIN

CASE: Client was injured by a drunk driver. As a result of the motor vehicle accident, client was rendered a quadriplegic and needed a life care plan.
Outcome: $9,600,000

CASE: Against Insurance company for failure to pay for property damage after a gas and fire explosion.
Outcome: $1,600,000

CASE: Medical malpractice for failure to diagnose a descending aorta aneurism, resulting in death.
Outcome: $1,300,000

CASE: Neck and back injuries from car accident. Client had ongoing symptoms and needed injections for attempted remediation of pain.
Settled for $485,000

CASE: Client was injured in a 2 vehicle collision. She suffered a traumatic brain injury, concussion and multiple injuries to the neck.
Outcome: $6,000,000

CASE: Client was in her car and was T-Boned by a commercial vehicle. Her cerebral spinal fluid leaked and she suffered a concussion and traumatic brain injury with neck and lumbar (low back) injuries. Her neck injury caused radiating pain, numbness and tingling in her arms.
Outcome: $3,400,000

CASE: Client was driving on a rural road when another car crossed the center line and caused a head-on collision in the snow and ice. Client did physical work for a living. Both knees were injured, along with a neck injury.
Outcome: $2,300,000

CASE: Client was driving on South Parker road when another vehicle rapidly changed lanes and rear-ended the client. That vehicle was cited for careless driving. The collision caused a concussion with traumatic brain Injury. Client missed time from work and had a positive correlation between brain scan and neuropsychological test results.
Outcome: $950,000

CASE: Client was rear ended by a dump truck, was then knocked forward and hit another vehicle. Client had a concussion with traumatic brain injury. Client underwent a brain scan which showed hypoperfusion, correlated with her concussion symptoms. Client suffered neck injuries and injuries to her low back.
Outcome: $650,000

CASE: Client was rear-ended. The mechanism of injury from the forces in the collision caused her neck injury and at the same time, damaged her organs inside her throat. Client had swallowing and choking issues.
Outcome: $1,250,000

CASE: Client was in a motor vehicle accident. Both injections in the neck rendered some temporary relief. The Injections were transforaminal epidural steroid injections. Surgery was recommended on the lumbar (low back). The low back was injured by the forces in the collisions.
Outcome: $933,000

CASE: The client was driving in her car and was rear-ended thereby causing injuries to her lower back and neck. Client also suffered a concussion. Client had to undergo facet injections multiple times, through multiple procedures. Client also had cognitive issues which required cognitive training and therapy.
Outcome: $400,000

CASE: Client was entering a highway from an on ramp and was rear-ended by a commercial van. Client tested positive for Thoracic Outlet Syndrome and failed conservative treatment. Client underwent thoracic outlet syndrome surgey, which involved removal of the first rib to attempt to relieve pressure in the thoracic outlet. Client also suffered a back injury.
Outcome: $750,000

CASE: Client was injured by a drunk driver, who crossed the center line of the road. Client underwent multiple surgeries and could not work. Client was late 40s and needed a modified life care plan.
Outcome: $750,000

CASE: Client was rear ended by a tow truck driver who was a diabetic. The diabetic at fault party was a non-compliant diabetic and claimed he had a syncope episode, and was “blacked out”. Client had a preexisting back condition known and the forces from the collision aggravated, or made worse, the preexisting back condition in addition to, causing neck injuries.
Outcome: $350,000

CASE: Client was a passenger in a car where the driver fell asleep on a country road in the early morning hours. The car rolled multiple times. Client had eye injuries, facial injuries and neck and knee injuries.
Outcome: $850,000

CASE: Client was on the job, driving her own car, when she was rear-ended. She suffered a concussion with traumatic brain injury and pursued Workers Compensation Claim.
Outcome: $150,000

CASE: Client slipped and fell on snow and ice in Central City. He suffered back injuries, that did not require injections.
Outcome: $125,000

CASE: Client slipped and fell on snow and ice on a sidewalk in front of a business. She had to have knee surgery and multiple injections in her back.
Outcome: $175,000

CASE: Client was visiting a friend who was renting a house. Client tripped on untreated, dangerous section of deck and injured his back.
Outcome: $150,000

CASE:Client was rear ended and needed fusion spinal surgery. Insurance proceeds were limited.
Outcome: $125,000

CASE:Client was rear-ended and had to have rotator cuff surgery. Insurance proceeds were limited.
Settled for $65,000

CASE:Client was at Denver International Aiport traveling through Denver, slipped and fell and broke her ankle.
Settled for $118,750

CASE:Client was exposed to mold in a multi-family dwelling that was caused by leaking water.
Settled for $125,000

CASE:Motorcycle accident, reconstructive surgery, post-traumatic stress disorder, neurological injuries
Settled for $1,275,000

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