Colorado News Roundup: Skydivers safely jump from burning plane; ATV traffic in Aspen area becoming problematic (08.08.16)
Here’s what’s happening around Colorado today:
13 SKYDIVERS IN COLORADO JUMP SAFELY WHEN PLANE CATCHES FIRE
COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. — Authorities say a skydiving plane caught fire and the 13 passengers aboard parachuted to safety as it made an emergency landing at a small Colorado airport.
The El Paso County Sheriff’s Office says the plane had just taken off from Colorado Springs East Airport when its engine caught fire Sunday afternoon. Officials believe it may have started when a bird got into the engine.
The skydivers, who were using Out of the Blue Skydiving and had been trained, jumped from the plane and were picked up by company workers. No injuries were reported.
Passenger Trent Reese told Colorado Springs TV station KRDO that they heard a pop and a few seconds later, the pilot said, “Everybody out.”
The pilot landed safely back at the airport.
ASPEN-AREA OFFICIALS EXPRESS CONCERN OVER ATV TRAFFIC
ASPEN, Colo. — Officials near Aspen are concerned about increased all-terrain vehicle traffic in the area.
The Aspen Daily News reports that Pitkin County Commissioners say they want to discuss the issue further with city officials.
County officials say they have questions about places in Aspen that rent out the vehicles, which are then driven in more remote areas.
Aspen Assistant Police Chief Bill Linn says most ATVs can’t legally operate on roads in Colorado, but there are some exceptions. He says police try not to be heavy-handed about the law as long as riders are being safe and respectful of others.
Officials said during a Tuesday meeting that some locals complain that ATV drivers have turned the roads into racetracks. There are also concerns that ATV trailers could block emergency vehicles.
DRIVER FLEES, PASSENGER FOUND DEAD IN OTERO COUNTY CRASH
COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. — Authorities say a man has been found dead in a pickup truck after the driver crashed in Otero County and fled the scene.
The Gazette reports that the Colorado State Patrol says in a news release that troopers responded to the crash Sunday morning to find the 68-year-old man from Rocky Ford dead. The victim’s name has been withheld pending notification of his family.
It was not clear whether any arrests have been made.
Troopers say the driver had veered off the side of a road, causing the truck to turn and roll before coming to rest on its side.
COLORADO PATROL SAYS IRONMAN BIKE RIDER VEERED INTO TRAFFIC
BOULDER, Colo. — Authorities say a 34-year-old Nebraska woman struck and killed by a vehicle during the Ironman Boulder race this past weekend in Colorado had veered outside the designated race lane.
Michelle Walters died Sunday morning after being hit during the event’s bicycle race on U.S. 36 north of Boulder.
Colorado State Patrol Trooper Nate Reid tells the Daily Camera that Walters veered outside of the coned-off race lane and into the traffic lane where she was hit by a pickup truck.
Walters died at a hospital.
The driver of the truck was not injured and no citations were immediately issued.
Reid said it is not clear why Walters veered from the designated race lane.
The accident is still under investigation.
— The Associated Press
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