By Steve Large

COLFAX (CBS13) — With coronavirus stay-at-home orders in place for the entire state, Caltrans is expanding work windows on some projects and moving other projects up to take advantage of the emptier roads.

In Colfax, Caltrans announced it is switching crews on its million-dollar I-80 Colfax project from overnight work to dayshifts because traffic is no longer any trouble.

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The department issued a statement reading: “Due to a reduction in traffic stemming from Governor Newsom’s shelter in place orders during the COVID-19 pandemic, construction crews will be permitted to work during the daytime hours.”

Driver Pete Tanzillo says he drove from Grass Valley to San Francisco in just two hours last week, a trip that could easily take twice as long before the state stay-at-home order.

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“The freeways are completely empty out there,” Tanzillo said. “I mean there’s nothing out there.”

Caltrans reports statewide traffic is down 36% from the same time last year.

A UC Davis study found traffic down as much as 55% on some highways. It also found statewide traffic accidents and crash-related injuries were down by half in the first three weeks of the stay-at-home order.

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Safer roads and fewer cars. This quarantine is keeping Caltrans crews as busy as ever.