Top 5 stories on, week of March 31 |

Top 5 stories on, week of March 31

Debris surround the foundation of the house seen on Wednesday, April 3, along Royal Tiger Road in Breckenridge. Around 1:30 a.m. Wednesday, the house exploded to an apparent rupture in the home's gas line. Two people were sleeping inside and were only injured.
Hugh Carey /

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1. Two injured after house explodes in Breckenridge

A massive explosion at a house in Breckenridge last week left the structure completely destroyed, but miraculously the two men inside survived. Just after 1 a.m. on April 3, the Red, White & Blue Fire Protection District received a number of calls regarding an explosion on Royal Tiger Road. Upon arrival, firefighters said the house was already completely gone, with only a huge black crater about 3 feet deep into the ground remaining. One man was taken to St. Anthony Summit Medical Center in Frisco with a broken arm, along with burns and abrasions. The other was transported to a hospital in Denver with a more severe back injury. Both individuals were released later that day. One of the men told a fire department official he woke up in mid-air following the blast. Representatives with Red, White & Blue believe that the explosion was caused after ice on the roof of the house slid down and broke the natural gas line, filling the house with gas and eventually igniting.

2. Armed man taken into custody in Breckenridge

Law enforcement officials took an armed man into custody on Thursday after he allegedly threatened to shoot people along Highway 9 in Breckenridge. A spokesman with Colorado State Patrol said they received calls beginning around 9:50 a.m. that a man was standing on the side of Highway 9 at mile marker 91 — near Tiger Run Resort — and allegedly pointing a rifle at traffic going by. State patrol troopers and officers with the Breckenridge Police Department arrived on scene with weapons drawn to confront the individual. A Breckenridge officer used a stun gun to incapacitate the man and he was taken into custody. No shots were fired, and the man’s rifle was confiscated.

3. Mountain Town News: CEO admits that Vail Resorts fell short on wages, housing

In this article by Allen Best of Mountain Town News, he shares that chief executive of Vail Resorts Rob Katz told a packed auditorium in Park City recently that the company fell behind on workforce housing and wages during its boom years. It wasn’t just the ski company, but also the communities it operates in. “Now we’re playing catch-up,” he said, according to an account by The Park Record. Katz said Vail Resorts hopes to make gains in housing when an economic downturn occurs. On wages, the same thing. Stock price for Vail Resorts has gone up 13-fold since the initial public offering in 1997. As for the sharing of that wealth? Minimum wage certainly hasn’t increased 13-fold in the last two decades.

4. Twists and turns in courtroom as Silverthorne dentist sentenced for role in illegal pill mill

A bizarre scene played out at the Summit County Justice Center last week when Bonifacio Guillena III, a former dentist operating out of the Comfort Dental in Silverthorne, was sentenced to three years in a community corrections facility for his role in illegally distributing prescriptions. Minutes later, he was resentenced to prison for violating the terms of his sentence after “mouthing off” to District Attorney Bruce Brown immediately following the hearing. About an hour later, the court rescinded the prison sentence, claiming it was improperly imposed because Guillena was not afforded another hearing or opportunity for mitigation on the sentence. Additionally, the court determined that because Guillena confronted Brown outside the presence of the court, there was no actual violation of the court’s conditions for the stay on the community corrections sentence.

5. St. Anthony Summit Medical Center agrees to deal to reduce health care costs for residents

Peak Health Alliance health care collaborative and Centura Health, which owns St. Anthony Summit Medical Center, have successfully negotiated a contract to make Centura the primary health care provider for the Peak Health Alliance network when it goes live next year. Peak Health, when online, will represent individuals and employees of small and large employers in Summit. Securing a contract with Centura and St. Anthony Summit was considered critical to Peak Health’s viability, as the hospital is the largest medical provider in the county. Without its participation, Peak Health members would have been forced to go outside the county for many major health services, which could have limited county participation.

“We do know that the savings for Summit County that Centura agreed to will be significant,” FIRC executive director and Peak Health executive committee member Tamara Drangstveit said.

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