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Washington Mudslide Death Toll Rises To 24

Raishad Hardnett |
March 31, 2014 | 4:53 p.m. PDT

Executive Producer

Washington state patrol photo of the devastation after the mudslide.
Washington state patrol photo of the devastation after the mudslide.
The number of people confirmed dead from the mudslide in Washington state is now at 24, according to the Snohomish County Medical Examiner's Office. 

The Chicago Tribune reported that 17 of the victims have been identified: They include a 4-month old infant, a 5-year-old and a 6-year-old child.

Officials suspect the deadly landslide to be caused by a microearthquake that happened two weeks prior, which may have loosened the surrounding soil.

ALSO SEE: Washington Mudslide Possibly Caused By Microearthquake

Sewage, propane and other chemicals have settled beneath the soil where the landslide occurred, prompting safety concerns from officials.

"We're worried about dysentery, we're worried about tetanus, we're worried about contamination," local fire Lieutenant Richard Burke, a spokesman for the operation, told reporters visiting the disaster site on Sunday. "The last thing we want to do is take any of these contaminants out of here and take them into town, back to our families."

Read more at the Chicago Tribune. Contact Executive Producer Raishad Hardnett here



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