Man hurt after getting swept away in avalanche |

Man hurt after getting swept away in avalanche

TELLURIDE ” A resident was critically injured Sunday morning after he was caught in an avalanche in the backcountry near Telluride Ski Resort, San Miguel County sheriff’s officials said.

Brian O’Neill was listed in critical condition at St. Mary’s Hospital in Grand Junction. Hospital officials said privacy laws kept them from releasing details of his injuries, and sheriff’s officials did not what injuries O’Neill suffered.

Ski patrol saw the avalanche, and a helicopter that was flying in the area rescued O’Neill after its crew spotted him on the surface of the snow, authorities said. Ski resort representatives did not immediately return a message seeking comment.

Elsewhere, an avalanche also was reported just outside the Breckenridge ski area in Summit County. There were no immediate reports of injuries there.

A snowstorm brought 5 inches of new snow to Telluride by Sunday, and Breckenridge had three new inches of snow. The avalanche danger was rated moderate to considerable in Colorado’s mountains, or about midway on a five-level rating system by the Colorado Avalanche Information Center.

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