[fosc] more slide news
broughton at berkeley.edu
Sat Jun 3 16:42:19 PDT 2006
The slide's serious effects have been on the residents of McKillop
Road and on their homes. But I thought FOSC might like to know
something about effects of the slide on the creek, which runs along
the bottom of the steep slope that has been slipping.
As earth has continued to move down the slope, the northwest bank of
Sausal Creek has been pushed southeastward. The southeast bank does
not appear to be moving. As a result, the bed of the creek has been
pushed up in several places, and the creek channel has narrowed in
several other places. Today I saw that the two banks have touched in
one spot; the water has dug itself a little tunnel and has continued
to move downstream.
Trees and other vegetation have apparently been "riding" on the
moving earth. One City official said on Thursday that the mass of
earth that is moving as one piece may be 40 to 60 feet
deep. Although root systems that are along for the ride may be
intact, some trees are nonetheless leaning.
The City of Oakland has undertaken a number of emergency measures on
McKillop Road, and it has contracted for an engineering study aimed
at predicting the future scope and impact of what's going on. EBMUD,
the phone company, and PGE have also undertaken local emergency
measures. EBMUD also tested some samples of local groundwater and
found no chlorine, which is their basis for stating that their nearby
reservoir has nothing to do with the slide. No one in the
neighborhood knows whether Alameda County Flood Control has agreed to
become involved in any way.
It would probably be best not to try to visit the creek in the slide
area. Conditions are unsafe. Also, before going through property on
either side of the creek, you would want to get permission from the owners.
Most of Nature's creatures seem oblivious to her upheavals here: the
frogs chorus lustily every evening; the Fruitvale trout is (I trust)
finding new shady spots from which to pounce on unwary bugs; and the
Cooper's hawks still glide above the slope singing their creaking
songs. As for people: Miki Raver, whose home on McKillop has
disintegrated, said that her heart was breaking and yet the sunlight
on the trees around her ruined house was still beautiful. I can
imagine no more beautiful response to upheaval than that.
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