Johnsons Landing residents remember deadly landslide 1 year later
Residents want province to offer buyout to those whose properties deemed unstable
One year ago today, a huge landslide roared down on the tiny Kootenay community of Johnsons Landing, killing four people and destroying five homes.
Many residents say they feel abandoned by the provincial government because an evacuation order remains posted for parts of the Kootenay Lake enclave, yet they are still waiting for compensation for their properties.
Studies show the hillside above the town is unstable and further slides are likely — but the government refuses to buy the properties.
"I think there is some solemnize as the anniversary draws closer. Things are not settled. It would be nice to feel a year later we could get on without having to worry or think about these things, but that's not the case," says Kate O’Keefe, who speaks for the homeowners.
"People are very demoralized. There is anger and a sense of negative resignation around all of that."
Justice Minister Suzanne Anton was asked about Johnsons Landing in the legislature on Thursday. She said the government has spent over a million dollars in the area but there is no buyout program available.
Heavy rain and late-spring snowmelt are blamed for causing the slope above Johnsons Landing to collapse, sending tens of thousands of tonnes of trees, rocks and mud cascading downward in the largest slide to hit the region in 12,000 years.