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Washington state mudslide death toll reaches 21, 30 people still missing

New numbers have come in from the Oso mudslide.
New numbers have come in from the Oso mudslide.
Photo by David Ryder/Getty Images

Washington state mudslide news from late Sunday (March 30) has the death toll reaching 21 people. It also reveals that there are 30 people missing in the Oso landslide still. According to a report by NWCN, a really tragic piece of news is that six people recovered from the debris have still not been identified at this time. Four additional victims have been found in the large debris field, but rescue crews have been unable to remove them at this point.

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Rescue dogs that have been hard at work since the tragic event took place are going to be given two-day breaks in order to rest up for even more searching next week. The reason for this is that the overworked dogs can lose their ability to perform the job if not given proper rest. Days of hard work in the cold and rain can take its toll on them in a similar fashion to their human counterparts.

The conditions haven't gotten any easier at the location with cold weather and a lot of rain hitting the area recently. It has made a difficult situation much tougher for the crews on scene. The only small good news that has come from the front line is that the number of people believed to have been missing has dropped dramatically over the past week. The locating of names on the list and eliminating possible duplicates brought that number down to 30.

To underscore how difficult the search has become following the Washington state mudslide near Oso, the remains being found are not always complete. Partial recoveries make it even harder for the crews to figure out which victim has been found.

Speaking about how long the recovery process is going to take, Snohomish County Fire District 1 battalion chief Steve Mason stated, "I don't know when we'll be done. It's going to take years to clean this all up and put families back together, put this community back together, but I just can't say enough about the work that's being done out here."

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