DEQ: Company needs to clean debris from landslide

COOS COUNTY, Ore. -- A landslide sending material into the Coalbank Slough has been sitting for a year as liability claims are handled in court.

The Department of Environmental Quality says Johnson Rock Products caused the landslide after dumping soil at a house where the slide occurred.

The DEQ is ordering Johnson Rock to remove the soil and stabilize the slope.

Johnson Rock's attorney, Brian Chenoweth, says the company placed material in a manner that met industry standards.

He says they have an agreement with the landowner stating he is responsible for placement and suitability of the fill.

In the meantime, the DEQ has devised a technical plan to clean the site. "We're working with folks to try and get that material removed from the slough, get the site stabilized and restore our wetland habitat that was impacted," said Pam Blake, the Natural Resources Coordinator.

Replies to closing arguments made by both parties are due on September 13, and Johnson Rock officials say they are hopeful the order from the DEQ won't be upheld.