(KTVU) - Officials are entering their third day on Sunday of asking the public to avoid driving towards the greater Lake Tahoe area because of a powerful winter storm that's expected to bring significant snowfall and long travel delays.
Saturday the California Highway Patrol’s Placerville division was contining to very directly ask the public to avoid any non-essential commutes towards the constantly shifting conditions.
“Just please stop coming up here,” the division wrote on their verified Facebook page late Friday night. “The situation is too much for the area to handle and there is nowhere to go.”
The rough conditions conditions continued into Sunday with the National Weather Service extending the winter storm warning to 7 p.m. Estimated travel time to Lake Tahoe is not possible because of the shifting patterns, but CHP says it could take all day or you may not make it over the summit at all.
"We continue to have an overwhelming number of unprepared motorists attempting to drive into chain controls and over the summit," CHP said. "As of this writing, we are working an abnormally high amount of incidents around our area.
Crews are putting in extra time, some are working double shifts, in order to adhere to motorists in trouble. Some drivers are following GPS suggestions and attempting to utilize backroads off of Highway 50. But, according to CHP, there’s no alternative routes of that highway. Having to help the people who get into trouble pulls officers away from being able to direct traffic, officials said.
SUNDAY UPDATE: Hazardous winter driving conditions continue today, with low snow down to 1500 feet. Chain controls remain in effect on 50 and 80. Expect major delays. Check @NWSSacramento @NWSReno for storm info. pic.twitter.com/YXP4sILYWU— Caltrans District 3 (@CaltransDist3) February 17, 2019