Details remain scarce in construction site fatality near Breckenridge |

Details remain scarce in construction site fatality near Breckenridge

Emergency crews on Tuesday, Nov. 16, work to recover the body of a person who was killed in an accidental burial at a construction site on Sallie Barber Road near Breckenridge.
Red, White & Blue Fire Protection District/Courtesy photo

Little new information emerged Wednesday, Nov. 17, about the fatal accident that occurred at a construction site near Breckenridge on Tuesday afternoon.

At about 4:15 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 16, emergency workers responded to a construction site on Sallie Barber Road in unincorporated Summit County, off Baldy Road east of Breckenridge, where a trench collapsed and buried two individuals.

One person was partially buried, and other workers and nearby citizens were able to dig them out uninjured. The other person was killed in the incident, according to Summit County Sheriff Jaime FitzSimons.

The Summit County Coroner’s Office has not yet released the name of the victim.

Local officials say the situation has been turned over to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration for investigation, but the agency did not return several calls for comment Wednesday.

According to the Red, White & Blue Fire Protection District, a contractor was installing utilities for a new housing development on the site, called Trails at Berlin Placer, when the trench collapsed. The development has been in the works since at least 2017, and once complete will feature 14 market-rate, single-family homes in addition to at least 20 affordable workforce housing units.

County Manager Scott Vargo said the county has worked with the developer through the approval process, but Summit County doesn’t have any direct involvement in the project or any ownership interests in the workforce housing.

Jeff Francis, co-owner of the development, said he was alerted to the incident but didn’t have any details about how it occurred. He said a company called A4S Construction out of Eagle County has been contracted to handle construction work on the project. The company declined to comment.

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