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Rain, flash flooding causes highway closure near Zion National Park

Rain, flash flooding causes highway closure near Zion National Park
Posted at 5:50 PM, Sep 11, 2013
and last updated 2013-09-11 19:50:33-04

SOUTHERN UTAH —  The Zion-Mt. Carmel Highway on the east side of Zion National Park has been closed to vehicles between Canyon Junction and the East entrance to the park.

The road was closed around 5 p.m. Wednesday due to heavy rains and flash flooding in the area.

According to a press release from the National Parks Service, the area sustained high precipitation, and  flash flooding occurred in areas including a ravine about a mile west of the small tunnel, where flood waters blocked a road culvert and undercut the road.

Alternate east and west routes are available via Highway 59 from Hurricane, Utah to Fredonia, Arizona; and Highway 14 from Cedar City, Utah to Long Valley Junction and Highway 89.

According to the press release, the road closure will be in effect overnight and will likely remain in effect into Thursday. Crews will evaluate the damage and work to stabilize the road.

The park’s visitor center, museum, Zion Lodge, campgrounds and shuttle buses will be open for business as usual.