MARCH 24, 1997 : your home town on the world wide web

Local News

Mudslide hits Sun Ridge condominium

mud pool

Following a mudslide last week a pool of water three and a half feet formed and seeped into the Keyes' home.
Photo by Andrew Walgamott/Northwest News.

mudslide by Andrew Walgamott
Early last Wednesday morning, Buster, a five-year-old shitzu-poodle mix belonging to Jeremy and Danielle Keyes, knew something was about to happen. His nervous pacing woke Danielle just before the slide hit.
   "My wife told me to duck," recalls Jeremy. He woke up just before a tangle of stumps, logs and muck hit their neighbor's condominium in the Sun Ridge development above McCrory's.
   "You could feel it hit the building," said Danielle. Globs of mud were thrown high onto the backside of the residence where the flow came to a halt and formed a pool of water. Soon there was three-and-a-half feet of standing water that began to seep into the Keyes' home. Woodinville Fire and Life Safety District (WFLSD) crews arrived and ordered the Keyes to evacuate. "We were told to pick up our valuables and leave," Jeremy said. "I picked up the dog."
   Later, WFLSD rescinded the evacuation notice and allowed the Keyes to return to the condominium and begin cleaning up. The couple found their carpet was a total loss, and the linoleum in the condo's kitchen would have to be replaced. A pump was brought in to siphon water away from the Keyes' back door, and by Thursday, heavy equipment was removing debris. A creek that had been draining out of the mudslide and down the driveway of the complex was contained again, as well.
   According to one tenant, there have been drainage problems at the location before. Earlier this year, residents attempted to build retaining structures above the complex, but were told to quit. Construction on a rock wall was to have begun next week, according to Jeremy.
   The mudslide originated on undeveloped property above Sun Ridge and traveled about 30 yards before hitting the condominiums. Jeremy said that the homeowners' association was looking into liability issues and that his own insurance company had advised him he wasn't covered.
   Jeremy and Danielle are lifetime residents of western Washington and are underwater photographers. They also work part-time at a local video rental store.
   Several of their neighbors offered them lodging, and WFLSD said they could provide a storage unit for the couple's belongings.