Homes Destroyed in Multiple Alaska Mudslides

By and | December 4, 2020

Homes are believed to have been destroyed and at least two people are unaccounted for after multiple mudslides in the Alaska community of Haines on Wednesday, authorities said.

The largest slide, about 600 feet wide, hit early Wednesday afternoon and trapped about 30 people. Those residents have now been evacuated, Haines Borough Mayor Douglas Olerud told The Associated Press. He said there were several smaller slides in the community of about 2,000 people.

Olerud said there has been a wide range in damage.

“We’ve had extreme flooding in some of the houses. We’ve had some that have shifted on their foundation. We’ve had some houses that were totally destroyed,” he said.

The slides occurred in heavy rains in southeast Alaska.

The National Weather Service said Wednesday afternoon that 4 to 8 had fallen in the Haines area as part of the storm.

The pandemic is prompting social distancing challenges for those being evacuated. Staging areas have been set up for evacuees at the Legion Hall and at a Presbyterian church. Area motels are being contacted to find temporary housing, Anchorage television station Alaska’s News Source reported.

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