by: Alison Grande Updated:OSO, Wash. —
Residents now have a direct route between Arlington and Darrington, but it’s going to be a slow drive. Seattle City Light Access Road opened at 12:01 a.m. Tuesday.
It’s a one lane road that requires a pilot car to escort traffic each direction. It’s only open to local traffic and the speed limit will be 10 mph. Westbound traffic will be escorted at the top of each hour, eastbound traffic at the bottom.
Snohomish County is drawing down the active search for the two remaining victims who were killed in the Oso landslide.
At a Monday news conference, officials said it was a tough decision to scale back the search. They want to focus on returning a sense of normalcy to the communities affected and restore Highway 530, which was covered in the slide.
A recovery shop for people who need relief help has been opened in Darrington and another will open in Arlington in the next few weeks.
But Snohomish County Sheriff Ty Ternary said they weren’t giving up on finding the last two victims.
One of the missing people, Steve Hadaway, was installing a satellite dish for a new resident on Steelhead Drive when the landslide hit.
The other person still missing is Kris Regelbrugge, a resident of Steelhead Drive.
There will still be a small-scale operation, but it will depend on what evidence they have, whether water is covering the site and the weather conditions.
Snohomish County Executive John Lovick joined the sheriff in giving his condolences to the 43 people who were killed, 41 of whose bodies have been recovered.
Lovick said the state and Snohomish County are forming a commission to examine what could have prepared the area better or if more could have been done.
The first meeting was held Sunday to decide who sits on the commission.