SEATTLE — A massive landslide of dirt, trees and rocks in rural Washington state killed three people on Saturday, critically injured an infant and several others, and destroyed six houses, the Snohomish County Sheriff's Office said.
The slide that was at least 135 feet wide and 180 feet deep hit around 11 a.m., authorities said.
The landslide blocked State Route 530 near the town of Oso, about 55 miles north of Seattle. Also blocked was the North Fork of the Stillaguamish River, which prompted an evacuation notice because of concerns about possible severe downstream flooding affecting more homes. People in the North Fork's flood plain were urged to go to higher ground.
The injured included a 6-month-old boy, who was in critical condition at Harborview Medical Center in Seattle.
Hospital spokeswoman Susan Gregg said two other victims were in critical condition — an 81-year-old man and a 58-year-old man — while a 37-year-old man was in serious condition.
Five of the injured were brought to Cascade Valley Hospital in Arlington, but one had already been treated and released, said hospital spokeswoman Jennifer Egger.
Authorities believe groundwater saturation from recent heavy rainfall caused the slide.