News, January 8th

1ST STAGE OF ASPEN PLANE CRASH INVESTIGATION COMPLETE

Aspen—The on-site field investigation of last Sunday’s deadly plane crash in Aspen is complete.  National Transportation Safety Board spokesman Peter Knudson says there’s still a lot of work to do and many any unanswered questions.  He says they haven’t been able to talk to the two Mexican pilots who survived the fiery crash.  They’re both recovering from injuries at Saint Mary’s Hospital in Grand Junction and investigators won’t interview them until they’re up to it.  The Canadair CL-600 was making it’s second attempt at landing when it skidded off the right side of the runway, flipped and erupted in flames.  The co-pilot, 54 year old Sergio Brabata was killed in the crash.  Knudson says the flight originated in Toluca, Mexico.  He says the men were flying to Aspen to pick up family and friends.  The NTSB is expected to release a preliminary report next week.

GRANDSON OF VAIL FOUNDER KILLED IN AVALANCHE

Vail—“Charlie’s Death Chute.”  That’s the name of one of the East Vail Chutes where a huge avalanche killed the grandson of Vail’s co-founder Pete Seibert.  Authorities say 24 year old Anthony Seibert was buried in the slide that occurred before noon yesterday.  A team of experts visited the popular backcountry area just outside the Vail ski area.  Dan Smith of the Vail Mountain Rescue Group says the avalanche barreled down the mountain for hundreds of feet.  It’s a dangerous area.  In the last 30 years, eight people have died in avalanches in the East Vail Chutes.  The most recent death was a snowboarder in 2008.

COLORADO AUTHORITIES ENCOURAGED BY DROP IN DUI ARRESTS

Statewide—It’s an encouraging trend that state law enforcement officials hope will continue for years to come.  The number of drunk and impaired driving arrests in Colorado has been on the decline.  Over the New Year’s Eve enforcement period from December 27th to January 2nd, 431 people were arrested for DUI.  Officials say while that number is still high, it’s 70 fewer than last year.  The Colorado State Patrol says there was one alcohol-related traffic death but compared to recent years, they say it looks like people are getting the message about the dangers of drinking and driving.  DUI arrests dropped almost 30 percent from 2012 to 2013.  This year, during the holiday enforcement period, most DUI busts occurred on the front range in Denver, Aurora, Fort Collins and Colorado Springs.

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