3 missing in huge mudslide near Collbran

Debris field estimated at 4 miles long, 2 wide near Vega Reservoir

Authorities were on the scene Sunday night of a massive mudslide near Vega Reservoir, searching for three people who had been reported missing. 

Reports of the three missing Collbran-area people came into emergency dispatchers about the same time they received calls about the mudslide on Salt Creek Road or 60.5 Road. The calls came in about 6:15 p.m.

The slide is estimated at four miles long, two miles wide and about 250 feet deep in some places, and is described as being very unstable, according to the Mesa County Sheriff’s Office.

Authorities believe the ridge was moving all day long because of the rainy weather. Emergency workers were on scene overnight Sunday to determine whether the slide would move farther.

“A witness who called into dispatch this evening described hearing a noise that sounded much like a freight train,”  the Sheriff’s Office said in a press release.

Citizens and the media were encouraged not to go to the scene Sunday, and the area is closed to the public at LE Road.

Emergency crews will have more information today on the extent of the slide and possible updates on the missing individuals.

“This slide is unbelievably big,” said Lt. Phil Stratton of the Mesa County Sheriff’s Office.

According to Google Earth, there are rugged hills along rural Salt Creek Road. The road is south of Vega Reservoir and appears to have a couple homes and oil and gas drilling wells in the area.


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