At 10:40 this morning, just east of Arlington, Washington, a massive mud slide rolled through a neighborhood that authorities have said has already killed three people and possibly more than 18 are still missing. The slide backed up the Stillaguamish River as water and the mudslide rapidly flowed through neighborhoods. Officials warned those in the area to evacuate Saturday night, but they lifted the ban for the hours during the day. The mud, authorities say, is thick and has the consistency of quicksand, so rescue teams have ceased searching to wait for the conditions to get better.
Currently they are flying helicopters over the area and searching for survivors or those needing immediate rescue. If someone is detected they will drop rescuers down to help them. The Washington state mud slide and flood has already destroyed 16 homes and a baby was left in critical condition, on top of the three killed and the many who are still missing.
About one mile of State Route 530 has been blocked off. Those who live in the surrounding areas were told to be on alert and they may have to evacuate their homes at a moment’s notice. Shelters and first aid sites have been set up by the Red Cross for those injured. The numbers right now say that the Washington mudslide has killed three, left seven injured and 18 are missing, but the final number is expected to be more once this is all over.
By Chris Dragicevich
The Seattle Times