West Vail fire damages Breakaway West condo

Daily Staff Report
Jeff Gaskin/Special to the DailyA fire broke out in the Breakaway West apartment complex early Thursday morning.

VAIL ” Firefighters evacuated 40 people early Thursday morning when a fire broke out at the Breakaway West condominiums across I-70 from Lionshead. Vail Fire Chief John Gulick said no one was injured in the fire that destroyed a two-bedroom condo.

Firefighters are still investigating the cause of the fire that caused between $300,000 and $500,000 in damages to three apartments in one of the four Breakaway West buildings at 993 Lionsridge Loop.

The fire started in a third floor bedroom condo at about 4:30 a.m.

The five-story building was evacuated immediately and the people were taken by a Town of Vail bus to the Vail Chapel.

“It was fast moving. Lots of things to burn,” Gulick said. “The two men who live there didn’t have time to get their belongings.”

Support Local Journalism

Peter Reiley, 24, who lives in the apartment below where the fire started, said the fire alarm woke him up. His condo, on the second floor as well as the one on the fourth floor sustained smoke and water damage and will be uninhabitable for a while, Gulick said.

“I left right away,” said Reiley, who on Thursday was moving his stuff to a friend’s house. “I didn’t lose anything, though, I’m fine.”

Jeff Gaskin, who lives in another Breakaway West building, said he woke up about 4:30 a.m. smelling the smoke.

“I woke up and I could smell it in my room,” said Gaskin, a host of Good Morning Vail on Channel 8.

“That’s the first structure fire I’ve ever seen,” he added. “It got me to look into renter’s insurance.”

Gaskin said firefighters showed up quickly and put out the fire right away.

It took fire crews about 20 minutes to bring the fire under control, Gulick said.

“We had about 23 people ” two-thirds of our personnel ” on the scene,” Gulick said.

Due to intensity of fire it burned through the floor and it collapsed.

The fire also damaged apartments above and below. The cause of the fire is still under investigation.

Check back for more details as they become available.

Assistant editor Matt Zalaznick contributed to this story.

Staff Writer Veronica Whitney can be reached at 949-0555, ext. 454 or

Vail Colorado

Support Local Journalism