Unusual Aspen avalanche totals vehicles | VailDaily.com

Unusual Aspen avalanche totals vehicles

Joel Stonington
Vail, CO Colorado

ASPEN, Colorado ” A roof avalanche of snow and ice, 5 to 6 feet thick, crushed two sport utility vehicles illegally parked by hotel valets in a fire lane in front of the Aspen Chamber Resort Association building Saturday evening.

The weight of the snow tore 50 feet of metal snow dams from the roof of the city-owned building. The snow dams landed on top of the SUVs.

“It’s something that was not preventable,” said city spokeswoman Sally Spaulding. “(We) didn’t see that issue happening. (We) were extremely grateful that it was just vehicles and not humans. From what I’ve heard, the city will not pay because they were parked there illegally.”

The entire roof of the chamber building has been cleared of snow following the incident.

According to the police report, Hotel Jerome employees agreed that the vehicles had been parked illegally and told police they would take care of the damage. The employees also told police the vehicles had been parked there because the garage at the hotel was full.

Both vehicles, owned by guests of the hotel, were heavily damaged by the slide and one of them had a caved-in roof, according to the police report.

Employees from the Hotel Jerome did not return calls for comment.

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