Local agencies monitoring landslide

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GRAND JUNCTION, Colo. -- At the Mesa County Central Services Building, multiple county agencies were monitoring movement of the landslide with live cameras and other equipment to ensure safety of residents in the area.

With the memory of the 2014 landslide fresh in their minds, the Collbran area could face the potential of another slide Friday night.

Local officials did't wasting any time sounding the alarm, letting residents in Collbran know they need to be prepared to evacuate at a moment's notice.

“It is Mother Nature so it is unpredictable,” said Pete Baier the director of Public Works.

"Two years ago, almost to the date, we had a landslide, we placed a number of monitoring equipment on the land slide to give us early warning and to give us a feel of what the land slide is doing,” Baier said. “That equipment included equipment to watch the pond level, the pond gauge, and also equipment to watch land mass and some visual cameras.”

One water monitor went off Friday around 4:45 a.m. and an hour later a fast flowing stream of water cut through the land mass creating a channel about 100 feet deep and couple hundred feet wide.

“We were prepared for this...we had meetings last couple weeks and equipment staged and sand bags staged," Baier said. "That being said we still have a fluid situation...the water is still flowing out of the pond... we continue to watch the land masses to see if the land masses were going to move,” Baier said.

it's hard to say how much water is going to build up there during the spring runoff. And it's actually just best to let nature run its course and find its way down the slide mass," explained Matt Morgan from the Colorado Geological survey.

All that water, moving through a former landslide could cause another slide at any moment, which is why Salt Creek and Collbran residents were placed on standby in case they needed to evacuate.

“This is a perfect demonstration that emergencies happened when we least expect them. It’s important to have a kit, have a plan, and be informed about the hazards that affect you, and be ready to respond in a moment’s notice,” said Andy Martsolf, Mesa County Emergency Manager.

The Collbran remained under a flash flood warning and a land slide warning. Authorities said they will be monitoring the area until it has stabilized and there is no longer immediate danger.

Emergency managers added that in order to be aware of an emergency it’s good to sign up for local emergency notifications.

In case of an event like a landslide or any incident affecting you neighborhood you will receive a number of alerts to your mobile or home phone.

Information on how to register for notifications GJcity.org or click on the link on the side of your screen.

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