Skip to main content
Advertising

Originally published May 10, 2014 at 6:09 PM | Page modified May 10, 2014 at 8:09 PM

  • Share:
           
  • Comments (0)
  • Print

Landslide clogs river, floods Maple Valley properties

No one was hurt Saturday morning when a landslide in Maple Valley swept dirt and trees into the Cedar River, temporarily clogging it and causing a flood. Officials closed a half-mile stretch of the river until further notice.


Seattle Times staff reporter

Reader Comments
Hide / Show comments
Thank you, S.T., for the photo. I've been very critical of your lack of photos, so it's only right to commend you for... MORE

advertising

No one was hurt Saturday morning when a landslide in Maple Valley swept dirt and trees into the Cedar River. But as dirt continued to tumble down the slope, officials closed a half-mile stretch of the river until further notice.

The 10 a.m. slide temporarily blocked the river near Southeast 214th Street off Highway 169.

The clogged river flooded seven properties in the area, including part of a 20-acre property across the river from the slide, according to the Kent Fire Department. No one was evacuated.

The river quickly resumed flowing, but left six houses with minor water damage, fire department Captain Kyle Ohashi said.

“Fortunately, this is a rural area and there are very few homes for how many acres were affected,” he said.

The landslide — a triangle shape on the side of the hill — is roughly 300 feet across at the base and 300 feet high at its peak. Because many large fir trees are along the edge of the face, some dangling off the edge, Ohashi said, the site will need to be monitored closely.

“The large 100-foot fir trees, they are actually hanging down the hillside right now,” he said. “The first heavy wind or rain that we get, they could come down.”

With those overhanging trees and the hill’s incline made more steep by the slide, state geologist Dave Norman, who was on the scene Saturday afternoon, said there is no question that parts of the hill are going to continue to fall.

Because of that risk, the King County Sheriff’s Office ordered an emergency closure of the Cedar River — from Highway 169 at Highway 18 to Maxwell Road Southeast at Highway 169 — for all activities, including fishing, boating, floating and swimming.

This is not the first time a slide has occurred at this location. Norman said he could see the slope had failed in the past, but he was unsure how long ago. He also noted another failed slope 100 feet away.

“There should be a lot of caution with any steep slopes along the Cedar River,” he said.

The King County Sheriff’s Office will continue monitoring the area.

Coral Garnick: 206-464-2422 or cgarnick@seattletimes.com. On Twitter @coralgarnick



Want unlimited access to seattletimes.com? Subscribe now!

News where, when and how you want it

Email Icon

Meet the winemakers

Meet the winemakers

View video interviews, conducted by The Seattle Times wine writer Andy Perdue, profiling five of our state's top winemakers.

Advertising

Partner Video

Advertising

Career Center Blog

Career Center Blog

The power of good manners


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 ►