Experts, residents keeping eye on Collbran slide

By: Associated Press
May 30, 2014 Updated: May 30, 2014 at 8:14 am
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photo - This wide-angle aerial photo from a drone-mounted camera, provided by the Mesa County Sheriff's Office Wednesday, May 28, 2014, shows the devastation of the three-mile long mudslide below Grand Mesa, where the slide started, background, in a remote part of western Colorado near the small town of Collbran. Authorities Wednesday were bracing for the possibility of another landslide amid dangerously unstable conditions that led them to call off the search for three ranchers missing there. Mesa County Sheriff Stan Hilkey said Tuesday the search eventually could resume for Clancy Nichols, 51, who also worked as a county road and bridge employee; his son Danny Nichols, 24; and Wes Hawkins, 46, the longtime manager of the local water district. But it might not be safe enough to do so until summer. (AP Photo/Mesa County Sheriff's Office)
This wide-angle aerial photo from a drone-mounted camera, provided by the Mesa County Sheriff's Office Wednesday, May 28, 2014, shows the devastation of the three-mile long mudslide below Grand Mesa, where the slide started, background, in a remote part of western Colorado near the small town of Collbran. Authorities Wednesday were bracing for the possibility of another landslide amid dangerously unstable conditions that led them to call off the search for three ranchers missing there. Mesa County Sheriff Stan Hilkey said Tuesday the search eventually could resume for Clancy Nichols, 51, who also worked as a county road and bridge employee; his son Danny Nichols, 24; and Wes Hawkins, 46, the longtime manager of the local water district. But it might not be safe enough to do so until summer. (AP Photo/Mesa County Sheriff's Office) 

COLLBRAN — Authorities and scientists are figuring out how to monitor movements that could signal another mudslide near Collbran.

Right now, helicopter flights and real-time cameras over the slide are helping keep an eye on the situation. At a town hall meeting Thursday night, Jeff Coe of the U.S. Geological Survey suggested putting a GPS receiver on the site to send information to a remote server.

The Daily Sentinel (http://bit.ly/1ttNFzW ) reports that more than 250 people packed the room.

Coe said there are three or four rockfalls an hour at the site. In addition, a lake is forming behind where the ridge broke away, triggering Sunday's slide.

An estimated 30 million cubic meters of debris fell, nearly four times the amount that fell in the Oso, Washington slide.

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Information from: The Daily Sentinel, http://www.gjsentinel.com

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