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Snowstorm shuts several mountain routes in California

There was no estimate for the reopening of the scenic stretch that is frequently shut after wet weather.

IANS | San Francisco |

Interstate 80 and US Route 50, the two key highways linking the west and east US, were closed in the mountainous areas of Northern California due to a strong snowstorm battering the state.

Interstate 80 is a transcontinental freeway from downtown San Francisco of California to Teaneck of New Jersey, in the New York metropolitan area, reports Xinhua news agency.

Local authorities reported that a 112 km stretch of the route was closed.

US Route 50 is also a transcontinental highway, stretching from West Sacramento of California in the west to Ocean City of Maryland in the east.

Aside from the two highways, several California state routes, including SR-89, SR-20 and SR-49, were closed in the Sierra Nevada region.

On SR-89, an avalanche cut the road from Tahoe City of California to near Squaw Valley, the site of the Winter Olympics in 1960, the California Highway Patrol said on Twitter on Monday.

“I-80, SR-20 and SR-49 will remain CLOSED today due to downed trees, power lines and continued heavy snow. Crews are working around the clock to get the highways reopened,” the California Department of Transportation tweeted.

Meanwhile, rockslides caused by heavy rain closed more than 65 km of coastal Highway 1 in the Big Sur region.

There was no estimate for the reopening of the scenic stretch that is frequently shut after wet weather.