Girl, 17, drowns in Colorado floods
COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. — A 17-year-old girl drowned when she was caught in heavy rain in Colorado Springs as storms pounded a region reeling from mudslides and flash flooding that killed one person in nearby Manitou Springs last week.
The El Paso County coroner's office on Tuesday identified the victim as Rose Hammes. Authorities say she died from drowning and blunt force trauma believed to be caused by hitting rocks in a drainage canal that was flooding in Colorado Springs.
The body was found about midnight. The girl's parents told authorities their daughter called Monday to say she was caught in a storm and planned to wait it out under a bridge. She was found about 3 miles from where she told her parents she was taking shelter.
Weather forecasters issued a flash flood watch for more storms on Tuesday night, stressing that the watch included the entire region, not just areas inside or below wildfire burn areas.
Friday's mudslides and flooding struck after about 1.3 inches of rain fell in an area above Manitou Springs that had been burned by the Waldo Canyon Fire last year. That fire destroyed 347 homes, killed two people and burned more than 28 square miles.
Areas burned by wildfires are vulnerable to flash floods because the scorched soil absorbs less water.
El Paso County sheriff's deputies said John Collins, 53, of Teller County was killed by Friday's mudslide, which pushed onto U.S. 24.
Collins was found buried beneath debris outside of his vehicle. It was unclear whether Collins left his vehicle on his own or whether the debris and water forced him from it.
The city, county and federal Forest Service are trying to blunt the effects of flooding by building basins in the burn area to catch sediment.
Mud, boulders and debris lined the streets of Manitou Springs, a quirky tourist town wedged in red rock hills between Pikes Peak and Colorado Springs. A few sightseers strolled through downtown, as did workers in knee-high rubber boots or hip waders. The clatter of power washers and the beeps of heavy equipment filled the air.
Donna Stone was gathering things of sentimental value from her rented house and glancing nervously at dark gray clouds overhead. Friday's flood surged up against the back of her house; she expected another flood will swamp it. “I've already said goodbye to my stuff,” she said.
Two signs hung in the windows of a gift shop called Five. “Thank you for cleaning our town,” one said.
The other said, “Umbrellas here.”
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Oil train derailment prompts evacuation in North Dakota town
- Federal appeals court flips on cell location records ruling in Florida
- 56 years later, Ohio fugitive captured in Florida
- VA probe ‘for show,’ cardiologist claims
- Trucking interests trump safety in $55.3B transportation spending bill
- State AGs lambaste climate proposal, predicting higher electricity prices, job losses
- Texas attack called ‘textbook’ lone-wolf case
- Familiarity guides Obama’s picks to lead Joint Chiefs
- AG vows to help better Baltimore police
- Researchers find new, elusive bird species
- $5.6B in education tax credits dubious