Many evacuees call Oregon City HS home for Christmas

Officials monitoring the slide activity say it's showing obvious signs of progression

Residents of lower section buildings 8,9,10 and 11 at Forest Edge Apartments were forced to evacuate by 5 p.m. Dec. 24, 2015 (KOIN)
Residents of lower section buildings 8,9,10 and 11 at Forest Edge Apartments were forced to evacuate by 5 p.m. Dec. 24, 2015 (KOIN)

OREGON CITY, Ore. (KOIN) — Slide activity in an Oregon City neighborhood has only gotten worse since the first round of evacuations last weekend, and now more residents are being forced out of their homes.

Officials monitoring the slide activity say it’s showing obvious signs of progression.

Residents of lower section buildings 8,9,10 and 11 at Forest Edge Apartments were forced to evacuate by 5 p.m. Thursday.

Residents heading out on Thursday said they noticed new cracks in the asphalt. (KOIN)
Residents heading out on Thursday said they noticed new cracks in the asphalt. (KOIN)

Nearly 2 dozen people are calling Oregon City High School home for the foreseeable future. It isn’t how anyone planned on spending the holidays.

“I don’t even know if we’re going to have a holiday,” Michael Alger, who had to evacuate his apartment, told KOIN 6 News. “My kids are really strong about it. I broke down a little while ago talking about this, but they just want to wait on Christmas ’til we’re in our own home.”

Many residents scrambling to evacuate on Christmas Eve were forced to leave furniture and other items behind. Some Good Samaritans stepped in to help people without cars get their belongings out as quickly as possible.

Discarded Christmas trees and holiday decorations were strewn across the complex’s lawn.

Residents heading out on Thursday said they noticed new cracks in the asphalt.

Berryhill Townhouses and Apartments units 20-29 were forced to evacuate by 5 p.m. Monday. That building was deemed dangerous over the weekend.

Recent landslide activity near Forest Edge Apartments has compromised the sewer line and storm water line, forcing the city to shut off all water to the lower complex for health reasons.

Unstable conditions and a compromised evacuation route are concerning. Residents were asked to relocate with friends or family immediately, and more mandatory evacuations are expected.

“I think as we see more mandatory evacuations through the Christmas holiday, we’ll expect more families to come to the shelter [at Oregon City High School],” Amy Schlossman with Cascades Region Red Cross said.

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The shelter at Oregon City High School will stay open for some time. The Red Cross is offering services to help those displaced by the slide activity.

City officials say they’ve received an outpouring of support from community members. Anyone interested in helping residents affected by the evacuations are encouraged to make monetary donations at the Lewis & Clark Bank under The Oregon City Landslide Relief Fund.

Donations can be mailed to Oregon City Landslide Relief Fund, Lewis & Clark Bank, 1900 McLoughlin Blvd #67, Oregon City, Oregon, 97045.

Property managers say it could be several months before things are safe and somewhat back to normal.

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