B.C. won’t buyout victims of Johnsons Landing slide

Debris covers a road Sunday, July 15, 2012 that was torn away by a landslide that buried three homes and has left four people unaccounted for in Johnsons Landing, B.C. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh. CANADIAN PRESS | Jeff McIntosh

An “act of God” has allowed the province of B.C. to limit compensation for residents whose home were damaged or destroyed in the Johnsons Landing landslide.

Emergency Management BC spokesperson David Curtis said the province doesn’t have to provide more compensation because it wasn’t at fault for the slide, which was triggered by heavy rain and spring snowmelt — according to a geotechnical report issued yesterday

EMBC said around $300,000 has been spent to assist the residents whose homes were destroyed in the landslide last July that killed four people and destroyed four homes.

Because the province was found to be not at fault, compensation for the victims will be limited to the province’s Disaster Financial Assistance Program, which will offer an additional $300,000 due to findings in the report.

However, how many victims will receive funding or how the money will be split up was not released due to privacy concerns.

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The report also found there is high-to-moderate potential for future landslides in the area and more debris could slide down at any moment, rendering property in the area worthless.

EMBC said they have met with residents, some of whom have asked that their property be bought out, but their requests have been denied.

Sixty-year-old Valentine Webber and his daughters, 22-year-old Diana and 17-year-old Rachel, died along with 64-year-old German national Petra Frehse, when at least three homes were engulfed as the massive slide tore through the tiny hamlet.

Those who wish to donate to the Johnsons Landing slide victims can do so online.

With files from the Canadian Press and Amy Judd 

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