Melting snow may trigger flooding around Washington State mudslide site
Wednesday, April 02, 2014 - 01:12
April 2 - Efforts to recover bodies from the Washington State mudslide could be hampered in the weeks ahead if melted snow runs into a clogged river at the disaster site. Mana Rabiee reports.
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In the search for victims in Washington State's deadly landslide, this massive mud pile is 'ground zero'.
But to the east of the slide, rescuers work on a very different kind of disaster zone.
The March 8 landslide clogged the Stillaguamish River.
Which in the days ahead, cut a new channel through the mud and debris.
The water here is 30 feet deep.
Human remains and cars could be at the bottom.
SOUNDBITE: MIKE ASHER, OPERATIONS CHIEF, SAYING:
"It's too dangerous in some of those locations where we are quite certain possibly there's some victims of this incident."
Officials say sunnier skies will eventually melt the nearby snow.
Which could drain into the river and flood the mud pile.
Within three weeks, they say, sections of the slide area, and any bodies still left there, could be under 100 feet of water.
At least 28 people were killed in the landslide in Snohomish County and some 20 others remain unaccounted for.
The search for those missing could be hampered in the weeks ahead, as snow runs into a river already clogged from the disaster.
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