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Massive rockslide closes highway in southwest Colorado

rock slide
rock slide
Posted at 2:39 PM, May 25, 2019
and last updated 2019-05-25 20:02:38-04

CORTEZ, Colo. — A pair of massive boulders rolled off a Colorado hillside and smashed into a highway, destroying the pavement and leaving the route blocked by a house-sized rock.

State transportation officials said Saturday that they would have to blast apart one of the rocks that settled on the road before it could be re-opened. The rock fall occurred along state Highway 145 between Cortez and Telluride.

A tweet from the San Miguel County Sheriff's Office stated that once the safety of the highway work area can be cleared of any potential danger, crews will likely build a shoulder to run a temporary single-lane around the rock slide.

A photo posted by the City of Ouray showed a person posing in front of one of the boulders, which appeared as big as a two-story house.

The boulder on the highway is estimated to weigh 2.3 million pounds. The rock that crossed the highway and gouged out an eight-foot deep trench is estimated to weigh 8.5 million pounds.