US 395 shoulders north of Reno closed starting Monday
Shoulders on U.S. 395 in the North Valleys will be closed from 6 a.m. to 5 p.m. weekdays beginning Monday and going through May 22 as the state installs wind warning signs, the Nevada Department of Transportation said.
The closures in both directions will be between Lemmon Drive and Village Parkway. NDOT is having trenching and other earthwork done. The signs will be installed later.
Six wind warning signs in both directions will be placed between Golden Valley and Bordertown. Advisory signs will flash when wind gusts reach 45 mph or more and warn drivers of vehicles 9 feet or higher not to drive through the area. Drivers of other vehicles will be advised to slow down.
For now, the restrictions will be advisory but could become mandatory after more NDOT study.
"U.S. 395 through the North Valleys is a particularly wind-prone location in Nevada, up there with well-known wind tunnel Washoe Valley in terms of impacts to travelers,” U.S. National Weather Service meteorologist Chris Smallcomb said in a statement from NDOT. “Ahead of stronger winter storms between October and April, screaming south-southwest winds come over Peavine Mountain at over 100 mph then crash down the steep north slopes like a wave does at the beach. When this wave of air slams into the valley, it's right along 395 especially near Stead and Red Rock exits, producing gusts over 80 mph - the equivalent of a Category 1 hurricane."
NDOT offered these tips for driving in high winds:
- Plan ahead. Leave extra time, as your drive may take longer due to the need to drive slower in high winds.
- Always wear a seatbelt.
- Slow to a safe driving speed and turn on headlights if needed to account for lower visibility created by blowing dust, sand, snow or rain.
- Keep your hands firmly on the wheel.
- Make steering corrections when driving from wind-protected areas to unprotected areas. The wind may suddenly move your car when traveling from a protected to the unprotected area.