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The Globe and Mail

Rain could delay search for four missing after B.C. landslide

A landslide struck Johnsons Landing, a tiny hamlet on the shores of Kootenay Lake roughly 70 kilometres northeast of Nelson, B.C., Thursday, July 13, 2012, severely damaging three homes. Four people, including a father, his two daughters and a German tourist, were unaccounted for and feared to be caught in the debris. This photo, taken during a British Columbia Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure geotechnical assessment shows the impact of the slide.

British Columbia Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure/THE CANADIAN PRESS

Rainy weather could delay the search for up to four people believed to be buried by a massive landslide in southeastern British Columbia.

Bill Macpherson of the Central Kootenay Regional District says the rain has made the slope unstable for rescue crews, who must now re-evaluate their approach.

At least three homes were engulfed by Thursday's landslide near the hamlet of Johnsons Landing.

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A father, his two grown daughters, and a female tourist from Germany have been listed as missing since the slide hit.

The search was delayed Friday until engineers were sure the four-metre-deep pile of mud, rock, and other debris was stable enough for crews to go back in.

The crews have been using heavy equipment to remove mud and logs, and an RCMP dog team is on site.

Searchers were also carrying avalanche beacons for their own safety.

The landslide is blocking the only road into Johnson's Landing, leaving the area accessible only by air or water.

B.C. Premier Christy Clark has offered condolences to the victim's families.

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