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Up to 26 feared dead in US landslide

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Heavy rain is thought be the cause of an embankment failure in Washington, US that is feared to have claimed the lives of 26 people.

Eight people have been confirmed dead and a further 18 are missing following the collapse on Saturday on State Route 350 at Oso, 90km north of Seattle.

The 54m deep landslide is reported to have destroyed 30 houses in Oso. Rescue operations were hampered on Saturday by the ongoing ground movement.

The landslide has closed the highway and cut off the city of Darrington. The mudslide debris has also clogged the North Fork of the Stillaguamish River, prompting fears of severe flooding downstream if the build-up of water behind the debris breaks through suddenly.

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