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

20 hours ago in Sports, Weird

Shall I compare thee to a carburetor? Indy 500 gets a poet

indy500383817720211

An Indiana University student who is a poet and a performer has been named the Indianapolis 500's first official poet since the early 20th century.

20 hours ago in National

Survey: Most Americans support usage fees to fix crumbling roads

highwaysREUTERS

The cost to repair and upgrade the U.S. surface transportation system to meet current and future demands is in the "hundreds of billions of dollars," the U.S. Government Accountability Office said last year.

21 hours ago in National

Volkswagen says emissions scandal bill could get much bigger

vwREUTERS

Volkswagen's CEO says the company will launch new electric vehicles and set up a new firm focused on operations like car-sharing as it seeks to get past its scandal over cheating on diesel emissions tests.

23 hours ago in Sports

PGA: Zurich Classic of New Orleans preview

25-overlay-9

Headlining the field is No. 2 in the FedExCup standings, Jason Day, who is looking to capture his third victory of 2016.

23 hours ago in Sports

No Curry, no problem

10-overlay-11

The Golden State Warriors did not skip a beat without key point guard Stephen Curry, routing the Houston Rockets 114-81 on Wednesday to seal a 4-1 series triumph in the first round of the Western Conference playoffs.