Family recalls terrifying moment a fast-moving avalanche swept over their truck

They said it's "miraculous" they survived the avalanche unscathed.

March 06, 2019, 7:55 AM

The Goleman family was driving home from a Sunday ski trip in Colorado when they saw an avalanche barreling down the surrounding mountains toward them.

Shaune Goleman said he considered hitting the breaks on his truck or speeding ahead, but the highway was icy and there were cars both in front and behind his. So he told his wife and daughter to hang on.

"Right before the impact, I said, 'Guys, there's nothing I can do, just hold onto something,'" Shaune Goleman told ABC News in an interview that aired Wednesday on "Good Morning America."

"I took my foot off the gas, just tried to focus on the road in front of me and tried myself to stay on the road until the impact hit," he said.

PHOTO: An avalanche pours snow onto Interstate 70 in the Ten Mile Canyon area of Colorado, March 3, 2019.
An avalanche pours snow onto Interstate 70 in the Ten Mile Canyon area of Colorado, March 3, 2019.
Shaune Golemon via Storyful

His wife, Tram Goleman, told ABC News their young daughter, Kiera, who was sitting in the backseat, was the first to spot the fast-moving avalanche.

"The moment I saw it, I thought, 'Oh no,'" Tram Goleman said. "'Oh no, this is it.'"

PHOTO: An avalanche pours snow onto Interstate 70 in the Ten Mile Canyon area of Colorado, March 3, 2019.
An avalanche pours snow onto Interstate 70 in the Ten Mile Canyon area of Colorado, March 3, 2019.
Shaune Golemon via Storyful
I don't see how you could see it as anything other than miraculous that we survived the way we did.

Within seconds, the avalanche plowed onto Interstate 70 in the Ten Mile Canyon area near the town of Frisco, some 72 miles west of Denver. A thick curtain of snow swept across the windshield of the Goleman's truck, creating white-out conditions and causing the vehicle to shift sideways off the road.

A dashboard camera on the Goleman's truck captured the terrifying moment.

"That's when I started thinking, 'This could have us buried here,'" Shaune Goleman told ABC News, recalling the "sheer force" of the snow slide and its "loud" rumbling.

PHOTO: From left, Tram Goleman, Keira Goleman and Shaune Goleman tell ABC News about being engulfed in an avalanche while driving on a highway in Colorado.
From left, Tram Goleman, Keira Goleman and Shaune Goleman tell ABC News about being engulfed in an avalanche while driving on a highway in Colorado.
ABC News

The Colorado Avalanche Information Center reported the avalanche was likely a category 3, capable of destroying a home or a car. No one was seriously injured.

The Goleman family was unharmed and their truck was not damaged. The vehicle was engulfed in mounds of heavy snow but they were able to escape through the sunroof.

"I don't see how you could see it as anything other than miraculous that we survived the way we did," Shaune Goleman said.

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