After Oso: Can Landslides Be Prevented in Slide-hazard Areas Like Finn Hill? Experts Will Address Risks.

When the massive, muddy Oso landslide sped down a mountainside in Western Washington, damaging dozens of homes and claiming the lives of 43 people, it left our region in shock. The event prompted many to wonder how this tragedy could happen and how disasters like this can be prevented in the future.

Three months since the Oso mudslide tragedy, the Finn Hill Neighborhood Alliance is holding a special event dedicated to looking at hazards in the Finn Hill/Juanita area of Kirkland, where many landslides have occurred historically. Even in recent years, mudslides have closed roads and endangered homes, property, and lives.

“While a slide on the scale of Oso is highly remote, many homes here are built adjacent to ravines, inclines and steep slopes, where slides are possible,” said Finn Hill Neighborhood Alliance President Scott Morris. “What do we know about our landslide geology history? What do homeowners need to know?”  Morris says he hopes this event, being held as part of FHNA’s general meeting, will help homeowners to identify and reduce risks of erosion or slippage.  It will also educate the public on what the city of Kirkland is doing to prevent landslides.

Kathy Troost, a geologist and professor at the University of Washington, will address the group, describing what landslides are and why we’re particularly prone here. Following her keynote talk, a panel of local experts will discuss our special hazards on the western slope of Finn Hill, which rises steeply up from the lakeshore to an elevation of 500 feet.

The meeting will be held 7 pm, June 25th, 2014, at the Finn Hill Junior High.

The Finn Hill Neighborhood Alliance is a nonprofit organized to protect the quality of the community’s rich woodlands and waterways.