Tuesday 21 October 2014

Mudslide: There's no one left alive

Published 29/03/2014 | 06:47

Search and rescue workers wade through water covering Washington Highway 530 on the eastern edge of the massive mudslide (AP)

Authorities say they have all but abandoned hope of finding Washington mudslide survivors.

Meanwhile Snohomish County executive director Gary Haakenson kept the official death toll at 17 , a day after authorities said the toll would rise significantly.

The authorities said previously that at least 25 bodies were located, but only 17 had been recovered.

Mr Haakenson said he believed crews were finding more bodies in the sodden debris, but the process from extraction to identification by the medical examiner's office was very slow.

Officials wanted to hold out hope for survivors, he said, but "at some point we have to expect the worst".

Ninety people are confirmed missing from Saturday's mudslide in Oso, 55 miles north east of Seattle.

Press Association

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