Alpine homeowners fear more flooding is coming

Posted at 6:12 PM, Aug 26, 2013

ALPINE, Utah – Homeowners in Alpine are bracing for another round of rain storms, which could cause more mudslides in the area along the burn scar left by the Quail Fire.

Heavy rainfall filled backyards in the area with water and mud last week.

Alpine homeowner Forrest Burnett said they are worried about facing another round of flooding.

“If we get a real storm it is going to be terrible,” he said. “I mean terrible.”

Maureen Burnett had a prize-winning garden, at least until last week’s mudslide.

“You wouldn't believe it,” she said. “We had nice landscaping down here, beautiful rock work and pathways, and this last flood washed it all away completely.”

The neighbors now call their yard the Burnett Canal, as it is covered in about 4 feet of mud. Forrest Burnett said this most recent storm was the worst they’ve seen in the area.

“The water level that came through here was about my height... probably 40-feet wide, roaring like Niagara falls,” he said.

Because so much of the vegetation on the hillside was destroyed in last year's fire, there isn’t much there to stop water, dirt and rock from coming down the hill. Crews have dug retaining ponds and put in a series of culverts to help channel mud and water away from homes.

Workers have also started to reinforce a retaining wall in the area with brick, and they said that wall is the first line of defense. But homeowner Vickie Reay said the wall may not be enough.

“It’s supposed to stay on that side of the wall and just go down the channel, but it didn't,” she said in reference to last week's slide.