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Authorities Identify Victims of Deadly Avalanche

By: AP/KKTV
By: AP/KKTV

Authorities released the names of two people killed in an avalanche in Colorado's backcountry.

32-year-old Justin Lentz and 34-year-old Jarrard Law, both from Portage, Wisconsin were killed Saturday in a slide near Leadville. Their bodies were found Sunday afternoon.

Seven people were involved in an avalanche on Star Mountain near Independence Pass. The site is about eight miles west of Twin Lakes Village.

Seven skiers were near the top of the ridge that activated the avalanche. Three people were taken to the hospital in Leadville with injuries including a broke leg, a broken ankle and a collapsed lung. Two people walked away unharmed.

The Lake County Office of Emergency Management said Sunday morning that one of the injured had been released from the hospital. The other two were transferred to other hospitals.

The avalanche did not reach the road. C-DOT returned to the scene Sunday morning to assess the situation and to determine the safest way to clear the area.

Search and rescue teams also returned to the area Sunday morning. An avalanche safety team checked the area and then determined and prepared the safest route for the search and rescue teams to take to the avalanche site. The terrain is extremely steep.

The Colorado Avalanche Information Center had been warning of dangerous conditions across much of Colorado's mountains after two weeks of heavy snow in the high country.


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