GYPSUM, Colo. (KDVR) — A home exploded off of Cottonwood Pass Road in Gypsum at approximately 12:35 p.m. on Thursday following reports of a gas leak in the area, authorities said.
On Friday evening, the Eagle County Sheriff’s Office said human remains had been found at the home.
The Eagle County Coroner’s Office is now handling the investigation.
The name of the person who was killed has not yet been released.
According to Incident Commander Tim Lavin at a community meeting on Thursday night, a company drilling for fiber optic cable hit a 2-inch double-feed gas line in the Cottonwood Pass Road and Valley Road area.
“It caused gas to pull up underneath the ground,” Lavin said.
The gas leak was controlled, but another gas line hit from days before caused the underground saturation of the Chatfield neighborhood, Lavin said. The power and gas were cut and evacuations were ordered for Chatfield Corners.
“As you can see, this is a pretty big problem,” Lavin said. “And we are working on that with the gas company. And we are hoping that they can mitigate by sometime (Friday).”
The American Red Cross was set up at the meeting to assist residents with housing in the event they needed it. The Gypsum Recreation Center was set up as an evacuation site to help anyone with questions and needing assistance, but not as a place to stay, according to Eagle County Undersheriff Mike McWilliam.
Eagle County Schools evacuated two schools nearby and posted this message on Facebook at 1:46 p.m. on Thursday: “The students and staff of Red Hill Elementary School and Gypsum Creek Middle School are safe and not in danger due to the gas leak that’s being addressed in Chatfield Corners. However, both schools have evacuated students to be outside of the facilities and we’re requesting that parents that can come and pick up their children do so.”
Residents evacuated from the area were allowed access back to their homes only by authority escort to retrieve essentials.
As of Saturday morning, all evacuation orders had been lifted.