Follow us:

The Today File

Your guide to the latest news from around the Northwest

March 23, 2014 at 11:19 AM

Rescue workers told to mark bodies, look for survivors

DARRINGTON – Before a Darrington search-and-rescue team of about 20 people headed back to the slide area at 10:30 this morning, Fire District 24 Chief Dennis Fenstermaker advised them of their priorities: Workers were asked to mark dead bodies if they saw any, then keep on looking for survivors.

He advised them that a helicopter would be observing the flood situation from above. It’ll be more likely, he said, that the backed-up water will bore a hole through the mudslide debris than the chance that it will rise above the debris.

The debris field is more than a mile wide and much of it will be eventually carried down with the backed-up water, said Selvig.

“It’ll be like someone flushed a massive toilet and all of it will head downstream,” said Peter Selvig, a retired U.S. Forest Service employee who volunteers at Darrington’s Sno-Skagit Fire District 24 station.

MORE COVERAGE:

Inslee: ‘The scope of this is almost unbelievable’

18 people unaccounted for in slide; voices heard, then gone

‘When the slide hit the river, it was like a tsunami’

3 die in mudslide east of Arlington, 6 homes destroyed

Five injured in slide are at Harborview Medical Center

Survivor tells of loud crack, wall of mud, house ‘in sticks’

Recent saturation of rain likely built up to fatal mudslide

WSDOT: Water surge could weaken bridge supports 

Comments | More in General news, The Blotter | Topics: Darrington, Oso mudslide


Advertising
The Seattle Times

The door is closed, but it's not locked.

Take a minute to subscribe and continue to enjoy The Seattle Times for as little as 99 cents a week.

Subscription options ►

Already a subscriber?

We've got good news for you. Unlimited seattletimes.com content access is included with most subscriptions.

Subscriber login ►
The Seattle Times

To keep reading, you need a subscription upgrade.

We hope you have enjoyed your complimentary access. For unlimited seattletimes.com access, please upgrade your digital subscription.

Call customer service at 1.800.542.0820 for assistance with your upgrade or questions about your subscriber status.

The Seattle Times

To keep reading, you need a subscription.

We hope you have enjoyed your complimentary access. Subscribe now for unlimited access!

Subscription options ►

Already a subscriber?

We've got good news for you. Unlimited seattletimes.com content access is included with most subscriptions.

Activate Subscriber Account ►