By Velena Jones

GOLD RUN (CBS13) — A parking lot of red lights, cars were backed up for miles along eastbound Interstate 80 starting at Alta Monday night.

“We were on our way home and ‘boom out of nowhere complete traffic stop,” explained Jeremiah Ross.

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The standstill was caused by a spin-out involving multiple cars, forcing CHP-Gold Run Division to stop traffic. The crash was just one of the dozens of crashes reported along I-80 and Highway 50 as snow fell in the area. The backup forced some drivers like Shelli Ross to pull over and try to wait it out.

“I thought oh crap, we are either going to have to get a room here or drive all the way back to Placerville,” Ross said.

Caltrans is already busy clearing the roadways after the start of a winter storm with feet of snow expected from Tuesday to Friday.

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“A lot of times motorists are not leaving enough room and that causes multiple spin-outs. Our biggest concern right now is safety,” explained Caltrans Public Information Officer, Angela DaPrato. “Our crews are working 24 hours a day, non-stop.”

Caltrans crews are working through the night in hopes to not have to shut down main roadways in the Sierra.

“If we have multiple spinouts like we had today, we may have to close the roadways but we are going to try to keep it open as much as possible,” said DaPrato.

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Travelers trying to make it over the pass before the storm hit found themselves stuck in it.

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“We got enough gas, we have got clothes, now the real question is are we going to make it up there in time to get to work tomorrow,” said Ross.

Velena Jones