KUOW's Ongoing Coverage Of The Deadly Oso Mudslide

On Saturday, March 22, a mile-wide mudflow devastated Oso, Wash., 55 miles north of Seattle. The massive damage and mounting casualties have rocked the small community between Arlington and Darrington.

Washington Department of Natural Resources

Editor’s note: An earlier version of this story stated that land above the Oso landslide zone was logged in 2005. The site was logged in 2004 and replanted in 2005.

The forester who clear-cut land above the Oso, Wash., landslide zone in 2004 says he followed standard procedures and state regulations when logging there.

KUOW Photo/Ruby de Luna

The first wave of memorial services honoring the victims who perished in the Oso landslide took place this weekend.

In Darrington, residents gathered to remember Linda McPherson, a longtime resident and librarian. After the service, the community gathered for a meal together. It's a special tradition that goes back many decades in this small community.

EarthFix Photo/Ashley Ahearn

An orange backhoe beeps in the background as cleanup workers and search dogs slog through the gray-blue clay of the Oso landslide zone. In the distance a muddy American flag waves over hummocks of exposed roots, broken trees and the remnants of the 42 homes that used to line this stretch of highway in the Cascade Mountains northeast of Seattle.

Flickr Photo/WSDOT (CC BY-NC-ND)

The massive mudslide that engulfed Oso on March 22 has claimed at least 30 lives and destroyed dozens of homes.

While the community suffered countless devastation, the helicopter rescue team was instrumental in saving eight people. One of them was 4-year-old Jacob Spillers. His rescue was captured in the video below.

Irwin Redlener's book, "Americans at Risk."

Ross Reynolds talks with Irwin Redlener, author of "Americans at Risk: Why We Are Not Prepared for Megadisasters and What We Can Do." Redlener explains why natural disasters like the Oso landslide are rarely the wake-up calls we'd expect.

KUOW Photo/Patricia Murphy

Donations of new and used goods are pouring into the town of Oso, Wash., after the devastating mudslide two weeks ago; so many items that officials have been asking for cash donations instead.

It’s taking a massive secondary effort to coordinate just how to store and distribute those items to the people who need them.

Courtesy of Stacy Noland

Stacy Noland deployed to Oso, Wash., with the Global Disaster Innovation Group Field Innovation Team three days after the fatal landslide there. Noland has worked in rescue and recovery operations following the 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil spill, the 2011 Joplin tornado, and Hurricane Sandy in 2012. His role at the debris pile was to figure out how to make rescue and recovery most efficient. We asked what he has learned so far.

Washington Lands Commissioner Peter Goldmark is speaking publicly for the first time since the Oso landslide in Snohomish County.

AP Photo/Ted S. Warren, Pool

Bill Radke talks with Washington State Patrol chaplain Mike Neil about his experiences helping people with the emotional toll of the Oso mudslide.

Neil is there to serve the search crews in the debris field, many of whom are the family and friends of victims. “Put yourself in that position of actually finding that person – that is a very traumatic thing and I’m not sure that they’re really prepared for what they might find,” Neil said.

AP Photo/Elaine Thompson

For many families of victims of the deadly Oso landslide, getting information about the fate of their loved ones has been agonizingly slow.

That's because the work by medical examiners to confirm the identities of the deceased is painstaking and requires time.

KUOW Photo/Patricia Murphy

As of Wednesday morning, the Snohomish County Medical Examiner’s office has confirmed that 29 people have died in the Oso landslide. Hopes of finding survivors are dwindling.

That’s taking a toll on the families and the search crews, some who have been out there since the very beginning, doing intense physical and emotional work. Rescue operations managers are very conscious about giving those crews a break, letting them rotate in and out so they can rest and recharge.

Bill Radke talks with photojournalist Joshua Trujillo about his experience covering the Oso mudslide through photography.

Flickr Photo/Doc Searls (CC BY-NC-ND)

Bill Radke talks with Los Angeles Fire Captain Ronald Klamecki about his own work in a landslide recovery in California and how authorities will decide regarding their next steps.

"As days go by, the potential of finding live victims diminishes. The rescuers are really putting forth the great effort and it wears on them too," he said. "They're doing their very best to bring closure to the victims' families."

KUOW Photo/Carolyn Adolph

The catastrophic mudflow that destroyed lives and homes a week and a half ago has come to be known as the Oso Landslide. That's led many to think the town has been wiped away.

Courtesy of Rae Ellen Bichell

About a dozen Seattle Seahawks and Sounders FC players visited the Darrington area Monday.

In a statement the Seahawks company said the teams wanted to offer a brief distraction for families devastated by the landslide near Oso, Wash.

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