Community helps family clean up after slide filled basement, yard with mud

Posted at 5:58 PM, Aug 15, 2015

WOODLAND HILLS, Utah --Clean up efforts are underway after a mudslide struck a Utah County neighborhood earlier this week, and dozens gathered Saturday morning to help clear several feet of mud off roads, driveways, yards--and even from one basement in Woodland Hills.

People in Woodland Hills spent Saturday wielding shovels, and there are big tractors out there trying to remove all the mud that's filling in the backyard of one family, who says they're overwhelmed by the support they're seeing from the community

“At 8 o'clock this morning we just had so many people walking up our driveway and bringing food and shovels and wheelbarrows,” said Shanna Beaman.

The Beaman’s home was hit the hardest by the slide, and mud and debris from the mountainside tore through her yard Thursday night. Several feet filled her lawn--tearing off her swamp cooler, breaking through her windows, and flooding her basement.

“It was like it wasn't real,” Beaman said of the damage.

Beaman said her family isn't overwhelmed by the amount of mud in their yard and home, but by the help they're receiving from the community.

“My husband is just totally overwhelmed with all the help we're getting,” she said. “It's amazing. I just can't, we could have never done this alone.”

Lilly Beaman said they were grateful for the help clearing mud from their belongings.

“So many people came to help us, and we got the pool table out of our basement, which is totally broken, and the basement was totally full of mud,” she said.

Damage from a mudslide in Woodland Hills

Damage from a mudslide in Woodland Hills

After the slide, the family's basement was full of mud. Saturday, it was all nearly gone. Shanna Beaman said without the help, she doesn’t know what they would have done.

“I don't know how we would have gotten it done, literally, it would have taken us years,” she said.

But cleaning up the mud wasn't easy, even with help.

“It’s heavy,” Lilly Beaman said. “I was shoveling in my basement, and it was super heavy, so we had people taking the wheelbarrow, and we couldn't fill them up all the way because it would be too heavy to wheel them out.”

Neighbor Paul Stoneman spoke about their efforts in the home.

“The basement room was clear full of mud,” he said. “We had wheelbarrows going nonstop while others were digging out the mud, so we cleaned that up, and then moved outside where the mud was on the house.”

The entire side of the family’s yard was also piled high with mud.

“It's really crazy: There's like three feet of mud,” said neighbor Jackson Badger. “It's really sticky, and it kinda looks like brownie mix.”

Hydrologists said there was only a 2 percent chance of this mudslide happening, and the Beaman's say, despite the odds, they're grateful for the help.

“I guess if something like this is going to happen, this is the place to live,” Shanna Beaman said.

Experts said it’s likely something like this won't happen again, but the National Weather Service will have hydrologists out here observing the area and residents are told that if they see any storms coming their way, they should evacuate until that passes.