‘Massive’ landslide sends tons of mud and trees tumbling across NC highway

A "massive" landslide in Henderson County has closed NC 9, dumping tons of mud and trees across both lanes of the well traveled highway.

Broad River Fire and Rescue first reported the incident shortly before 11:30 p.m. Monday, posting on Facebook that "one of our main roads for mutual aid, EMS and law enforcement is closed."

The department said the slide fell near the intersection of Shumont Road, and also forced the closing of nearby Morgan Hill Road.

TV station WLOS quoted the N.C. Department of Transportation as saying it would take "at least the rest of the day" to get the road reopened.

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WHNS is reporting no one was hurt in the slide, which it says is covering 300 to 400 feet of roadway.

As many as 60 trees came down with the mud, according to WHKP.

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NC cut landslide hazard program, despite dangers

Mudslides have been reported in western North Carolina since Subtropical Storm Alberto brought record rain to some counties last week. Two deaths on Wednesday were blamed on a mudslide near Boone that also prompted a gas explosion.

Another mudslide in McDowell County was blamed for pushing an NCDOT bulldozer into the Catawba River on Tuesday, May 29. Two men were inside and had to be rescued from the rising waters, as they stood on the side of the vehicle, officials said.

The U.S. Forest Service put out a warning on Monday that N.C. mountain visitors should watch out for trees toppling due to high winds and weeks of heavy rain, the Charlotte Observer reported June 4.

The "safety alert" was issued for the Nantahala and Pisgah national forests in western North Carolina.

Mark Price: 704-358-5245, @markprice_obs

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