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Northwest sees slides, more snow

A mud slide destroyed an Oregon home Friday, briefly trapping its occupants, and flooding, mud and deep snow blocked roads as the latest winter storm pummeled the Northwest.
Winter Weather
Drivers and their vehicles wait Thursday night at the top of Snoqualmie Pass, Wash., for the green light to start heading down the mountain toward Seattle.Andy Rogers / Seattle Post-Intelligencer via AP
/ Source: The Associated Press

A mud slide destroyed a home Friday, briefly trapping its occupants, and flooding, mud and deep snow blocked roads as the latest winter storm pummeled the Northwest.

Residents of a home in suburban Lake Oswego called 911 early Friday saying they were trapped after mud flowed into their home, filling the first floor. They escaped out a window and were taken to a hospital, said deputy Fire Marshall Gert Zoutendijk. He said their lives were not in danger.

Authorities said 21 nearby homes were evacuated.

Outside Portland in Clackamas County, about 30 families were evacuated from a mobile home park because of flooding and about 60 roads were closed. County officials declared a state of emergency.

The storm dropped just over 3 inches of rain east of Portland before the sky cleared during the morning, and 3.9 inches fell in Aurora, south of the city.

Passes reopen in Washington
In the Cascade range in Washington, heavy snow kept the state's three main east-west mountain passes closed for long stretches.

All three Cascade passes were closed for most of New Year's Day, but crews reopened Interstate 90 across Snoqualmie Pass late Thursday and U.S. 2 and U.S. 12 over Stevens Pass on Friday morning.

Avalanche warnings were in effect for the Cascades and Olympics in Washington.

Southeast of Portland, a highway east of Sandy remained shut down Friday by a slide that piled mud and broken trees up 2 feet deep on Thursday.

Oregon's Columbia River Highway was closed by slides between the Vista House and Multnomah Falls, and the state Department of Transportation reported numerous other closings, including one lane of Interstate 205 south of Portland.

Washington has seen at least two weather-related deaths in the past week, while 11 people have been killed in recent British Columbia avalanches.

The next storm is forecast to bring snow and possibly high winds to large areas of winter-weary Eastern Washington from Yakima to Spokane.

In hard-hit Spokane, 2.4 inches of new snow fell Thursday, and more snow was expected in the evening, National Weather Service technician Bob Bonner said.

Spokane finished December with 61.5 inches of snow, far eclipsing the previous one-month record of 56.9 inches set in January 1950. Snowfall records in the area have been kept since 1893. The heavy snow has been blamed for more than a dozen roof collapses, including those at a church, grocery store, health club and building supply company.

Snow buries elderly woman
An 85-year-old woman who lived about 15 miles southeast of Spokane died last weekend, suffocating when snow apparently fell from her rooftop and buried her as she shoveled her sidewalk, the Spokane County sheriff's office said.

On Wednesday, 24-year-old Megan Kinsella of the Seattle suburb of Redmond was killed after she and a male friend were hit by an ice slide after climbing in the Cascade Mountains near Enumclaw, Pierce County sheriff's Deputy Dan Hudson said. The man was hospitalized with a serious head injury.

The Weather Service also issued a high wind warning for the south Washington coast and south Washington Cascades and foothills through Thursday night.