News

Washington state eyes building ban after deadly mudslide

Washington state eyes building ban after deadly mudslide

MUDSLIDE:The Snohomish County Medical Examiner's Office said 41 bodies had been recovered from the slide that buried the river valley neighborhood in the Cascade mountain foothills. Photo: Reuters

SEATTLE (Reuters) – Snohomish County was on Wednesday considering a six-month ban on new construction in landslide-prone areas countywide after a slide last month that killed 41 people.

A rain-soaked hillside collapsed above the Stillaguamish River on March 22 unleashing a torrent of mud that swallowed up a stretch of state highway and about three dozen homes near the small community of Oso, about 55 miles northeast of Seattle.

The Snohomish County Medical Examiner’s Office said the remains of 41 victims had been recovered from the slide that buried the river valley neighborhood in the Cascade mountain foothills.

U.S. President Barack Obama on Tuesday visited the site, offering condolences to the families of victims, encouragement to rescue workers and promises of government support.

PHOTOS: Oso mudslide

The Snohomish County Council was to vote on the proposed moratorium on construction within a half-mile of landslide hazard areas defined by the county, council president Dave Somers said, according to local media.

The ban, which would not include projects with completed permits or building applications, would give officials time to assess risks and develop new policies as needed, Somers was quoted as saying.

Somers, and other Snohomish County officials, did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

(Reporting by Eric M. Johnson in Seattle; Editing by Janet Lawrence)

Recent Headlines

in Local

City Council Green Lights Magro’s off Stevenson Dr.

Fresh
municipalcenter

Aldermen approved the variance on a 9-1 vote, Ward 3 Alderman Doris Turner was the lone no vote.

in Local

Eastbound Monroe St. Reduced by Capitol

road construction

Public Works says multiple service valves have broken and they need to be repaired.

in Local

Portions of Chatham Under Boil Order

water

Residents and businesses in the area on West Walnut St. from Route 4 to College might experience low water pressure or no water pressure at all.

in Election 2014, Local

Barr, Regan Agree to Sheriff’s Race Debate on WTAX Oct. 31

sangamon county sheriff

The two candidates have sparred back and forth in recent weeks through press releases and, in some cases, have cancelled other debates due to perceived hostilities.