'It's part of living on a river'

'It's part of living on a river'

CARNATION, Wash. -- With another day came more heartbreak and more back-breaking work for area flood victims.

Local homeowners are waiting for engineers to tell them which houses are beyond repairs, slopping through mud piles in the meanwhile to find anything worth saving.

Kristen Greenlaw is still in shock. Her second-story wraparound deck now sits on the ground, 100 yards across the road. She had just rented her house in November.

"It's undermined our foundation completely on the other side. And this side, the foundation is in the driveway," she said, trying to make sense of the pile of debris that used to be her house.

King County is rebuilding the levy in Greenlaw's backyard. Huge rocks and stones stand twice as high as last week when it gave way, sending the current, rocks and timber barreling toward a row of homes.

"As the debris came down and the trees came down, it just wiped out the levy. Our house is at the end of the row, and we got the log jam, " said Greenlaw.

Water gushed through and knocked down hundreds of trees and pulled down a deck by tearing it right off the side of the house. It even had the force to pick up the house and wedge logs between the foundation and the frame.

"All this asphalt, that's what's left of my driveway," said flood victim Craig LaBell, letting out a nervous laugh. "Well, my carport, it's gone."

LaBell was inside his home when the river dropped a tree on his front porch.

"At that point, I was pretty nervous. I said 'definitely time to go,"' he said.

On Tuesday LaBell tossed out whatever he could lift on his own as he waited on structural engineers to tell him how bad the damage really is. But even so, he said he knows things could've been much worse.

"First couple off days were pretty rough. Once you look at, you realize you can rebuild and start all over. It's part of living on a river," he said.