YAKIMA, WASH. — At 6 a.m. Sunday, Oct. 11, 2009, the Washington State Department of Transportation (WSDOT) and the Washington State Patrol (WSP) closed a 47-mile section of SR 410 when a quarter-mile section of the highway was uplifted and pushed into the Naches River. The hillside continued to move, threatening more property damage and redirecting the river, so nearby residents (approximately 60) were evacuated. At that time, the Nile Road was available as a detour route. Due to the continuous movement (slumping) of the hillside and the redirection of the Naches River channel, a power outage occurred for some properties.
At 10 a.m., Nile Road was damaged by the landslide and is now under water and is no longer available as a detour route. Bethel Ridge Road is now the exit route for evacuees. This gravel-surfaced mountain road is only available for local residents being evacuated due to the land movement and potential flooding.
"There are large sections of the highway buried or pushed into the river. The slumping of the hillside and the uplifting of the valley floor continues. It will take several weeks before we can have a new roadway constructed and ready for traffic," said Don Whitehouse, WSDOT regional administrator. The landslide continues to increase in size and widen to the east.