Authorities Warn Hikers, Drone Pilots To Stay Out Of Slide Area
The Yakima County Sheriff's Office is warning people about trespassing on Rattlesnake Ridge and warning of the use of drones above the anticipated landslide east of Union Gap.
Chief Civil Deputy Ed Levesque says they the Sheriff's Office has received reports of people hiking or biking on the ridge. He says that's considered trespassing and he says it's dangerous.
"The general public has no business up there," Levesque says. "You're putting your own lives at risk and the lives of emergency personnel if they have to come get you if something happens."
And Levesque adds that you could face arrest for trespassing on private land. He also says people have been flying drones above the ridge -- that's dangerous, too. And it's against federal law since the ridge is within five miles of the Yakima Air Terminal. Levesque says drone pilots need permission through the FAA to legally fly a drone in that area.
As for the land? Experts say it's still moving at 1.6 feet per week and is expected to fail sometime in February or early March. They say they still expect it to slide into the quarry area and stabilize itself. But they're also prepared for the worst-case scenario if the slide hits Interstate 82 or the Yakima River.