More Bodies Found In Washington Mudslide

By: The Associated Press Email
By: The Associated Press Email

Crews using cadaver dogs, small bulldozers and their hands have been working through the muck and rain in a search for more people trapped in Saturday's mudslide about 55 miles north of Seattle.

Two more bodies were recovered late Tuesday, bringing the official death toll to 16. As many as eight more bodies have been located but not yet recovered.

Scores of people remain listed as missing, but officials hope the restoration of power in a nearby logging town of Darrington will allow some residents to call in and have their names removed from the list.

Searchers have warned that they are likely to find more bodies in the debris field, which covers a neighborhood of 49 structures.

The National Weather Service has extended a flood warning in the area until 6 p.m. Wednesday for the North Fork of the Stillaguamish River. The weather service says it expects some flooding of homes and roads to continue until a newly forming river channel is large enough to drain the lake behind the slide blockage near Oso, Washington.

A flash-flood watch is in effect through Monday afternoon, although the weather service says the likelihood of a flash flood below the blockage is very low.

Meanwhile, reports that warned years ago of the potential for a catastrophic landslide in Oso have been surfacing. Snohomish County officials and authorities in Oso say they were vigilant about warning of the dangers of a landslide.

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