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Orange County Focus

ANAHEIM : City, County, MWD Sued Over '92 Slide

July 18, 1994|MATT LAIT

An Anaheim Hills homeowners association has sued the city, Orange County and the Metropolitan Water District over damage caused by a 25-acre landslide in January, 1992.

The suit, filed last week in Orange County Superior Court on behalf of the Window Hill Homeowners' Assn., alleges that the city and county were negligent in permitting the housing development despite knowledge that the area is susceptible to landslides.

Likewise, water officials were negligent in installing a defective pipeline in the unstable hillside, the suit contends.

The homeowners' association contends that the slide damaged common property and property values. The suit seeks unspecified damages.

In a related case filed in January, about 250 residents sued the same agencies for $300 million. That suit is still being litigated.

Officials of the city, county and water agency have denied any wrongdoing in connection with the landslide.

City officials have said they first learned about the landslide in June, 1992, when residents reported buckling in their street.

Between July, 1992, and Jan. 17, the hillside moved one inch. But after heavy rains in January, the slide accelerated dramatically.

The landslide forced the evacuation of some 45 houses in the Anaheim Hills. Within several months, almost all of those were reoccupied, but three were condemned.

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