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March 25, 2014 AT 11:44 AM
A county emergency chief insisted Tuesday that officials could not have anticipated the Washington mudslide that killed at least 14 people — and suggested it might have been triggered by a small earthquake days almost two weeks earlier. In a briefing, Snohomish County Emergency Management Director John Pennington said, "I want to know why this slide went, too." A look into recent seismic activity found on March 10 there was a 1.1-magnitude earthquake behind the slab of hillside that broke free Saturday and buried a square mile in muck. It's unknown if the micro-earthquake, too small to be felt by anyone, played any role in the disaster, which followed a rainy winter.