Top 5 stories on SummitDaily.com, week of Dec. 8
Editor’s note: Stories in this list received the most page views on SummitDaily.com for the past week.
1. Summit County firefighter dies after falling from roof of condo building during a fire in Copper Mountain
Summit Fire & EMS firefighter Ken Jones, 46, died after falling about 60 feet from the roof of a Copper Mountain condo building when crews were working to battle a fire at that location.
Jones and a crew from the Copper fire station were the first on scene a few minutes after the fire was reported. Jones headed to the roof of the five-story building to find a way to access the fire. He fell to his death shortly before 2 a.m.
Jones’ death is the first in Summit Fire department history, and leadership in the department is working to support Jones’ family — including his wife and two young children, ages 11 and 13 — along with the Summit Fire team.
“To say the least, we are all devastated,” Summit Fire Deputy Chief of Operations Travis Davis said at a news conference.
Vail Resorts announced $210 million to $215 million in capital investment projects for the 2020-21 season which, for Summit County, means a new chairlift on Breckenridge Ski Resort’s Peak 7 and a replacement of Keystone Resort’s Peru Express Lift. Beaver Creek Ski Resort also is getting an additional 250 skiable acres.
Breckenridge’s new Peak 7 lift will be a high-speed, four-person lift on the north side of the peak. The new lift is meant to increase skier traffic flow on the peak.
At Keystone, crews will replace the current four-person Peru Express with a six-person chairlift to increase the rate of transportation from the base area.
A winter storm that rolled in on Thursday didn’t stop, causing the Summit School District to cancel classes on Friday for the first time this school year. I-70 and other road closures snarled traffic throughout the weekend, while skiers reveled in the fresh powder.
Firefighters around Colorado wore black stripes across their badges, and organizations throughout the county lowered flags to half-staff last week as residents in the area mourned the death of Ken Jones, a firefighter with Summit Fire & EMS who fell to his death at a fire near Copper Mountain.
While questions surrounding the incident persist, the tragic loss of one of the county’s first responders has undoubtedly sent reverberations throughout the area as his families at home and at the fire department, along with the greater Summit County community, continue to grieve.
The investigation is expected to take weeks and will look into building conditions, weather, the department’s procedures, the nature of the fire and myriad other potential variables.
“He brought a smile to my face right away, and the reason I hired him was because I could tell he had a passion,” Summit Fire Chief Jeff Berino said. “And that’s something we look for. We can teach our firefighters how to tie knots and how to deal with fires, but they have to have the passion and the drive and the love to serve the community. And Ken did.”
5. Summit County Sheriff’s Office asks for help catching vandal who shot out car windows near Frisco
The Summit County Sheriff’s Office is asking for the community’s help in catching the vandal responsible for shooting out a number of car windows near Frisco.
On Tuesday, Dec. 10, the Sheriff’s Office responded to the Bill’s Ranch neighborhood in unincorporated Summit County, between Frisco Elementary School and the County Commons, on numerous reports of property damage.
According to the Sheriff’s Office, at least one house window and 12 car windows were damaged by what is believed to be a BB gun. While no injuries have been reported, the damage is already estimated to exceed $6,000. The damage also doesn’t appear to be contained to the Bill’s Ranch neighborhood, with other reports coming in from other areas around Frisco.
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