Letter: Avon-to-Gilman power line fire hazard
Did you know the new Holy Cross Energy backup power line that will run through the Town of Minturn has been in the planning stages for more than five years?
Did you know this line is intended to serve Vail, Avon and Beaver Creek….and only recently was Minturn added to the line?
The Forest Service says the new overhead and partially buried lines will have “no impact” to the White River National Forest. But is anyone acknowledging preventable fire safety standards for the very community the power lines burden?
The entire Avon-to-Gilman corridor, which includes a town with a population of 1,100 people, a state and federal highway, a school and several trailheads, is surrounded to the north and south by untouched, mature forest land that is a tinderbox waiting to be ignited by the first downed power line.
Check out the book titled “Paradise” by Lizzie Johnson that details all of the fatal mistakes and lessons learned concerning the deadliest wildfire in U.S. history whereby power company infrastructure neglect is largely to blame. Why would any utilities company build above-ground lines in a mature forest ever again?
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The U.S. Forest Service and Holy Cross Energy need to publicly acknowledge that the proposed above ground lines are a preventable fire hazard to the community of Minturn. Please join me in demanding buried power lines from Avon to Gilman to prevent a forest fire. Your concerns can be received at: Eagle Holy Cross District Ranger, Leanne Veldhuis at P.O. Box 190, Minturn CO 81645, 970-827-5182 or leanne.veldhuis@usda,gov.