Oso disaster area poised for transition



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Posted on April 23, 2014 at 5:22 PM

ARLINGTON, Wash. - The grim task isn't over yet, but the size of the job at the Oso landslide is shrinking.

The number of excavators, the number of recovery teams is down, but there are still two victims missing.  One considered likely to be missing on the west side of the slide, another to the east. Crews are going back over one area again, going down another three feet into the debris.

The east part of the slide zone is more problematic.

“Right now, there's too much water and we have to wait till that drains off,” said incident spokesman Howard Hunter

Once the remaining victims can be found, the work of rebuilding Highway 530 can begin.

Some of that work is already happening. Parts of  the "temporary" or power line road that could be opened to limited traffic to get people between Darrington and Arlington is now widened.

Also, in the distance you can now see some of the pavement of the state Highway 530 is now exposed, but parts of the road are destroyed.

Geologists and other scientists have been playing a big role, monitoring the slide debris and the remains of Hazel Hill to protect the people below.
They say once the recovery is done they will be in a position to study the slide debris and try and figure out just how stable it is now, and try and figure out just what happened here one month and a day ago.