Evacuees, landowners ponder lawsuits

Ongoing mudslides forced the evacuation of homes around San Mateo County this week and prompted some property owners to consider litigation.

A mudslide struck a coastside home at 650 El Granada Blvd. late Wednesday afternoon, evacuating the home but causing no injuries, and two homes in Broadmoor on Nimitz Drive were evacuated around 5 p.m. in a separate incident. The new slides followed a Brisbane mudslide Tuesday night that forced the evacuation of three homes on Humboldt and Sierra Point roads and caused the collapse of 40 feet of roadway.

Emergency personnel worked late into the night to build a barrier between the mud and the rear of the homes to divert the oozy mess, and red-tagged the Humboldt Road home on Wednesday, Brisbane public information officer Fred Smith said.

In Broadmoor, Stan Brody of Multisource Realty said a lawsuit is possible following an April 3 landslide that resulted in condemnation of 606 Larchmont Drive. Brody has a financial interest in the newly built home that he, developer Michael Wallace and owner William Watts chose to dismantle this week after the landslide undermined it. He declined to comment more specifically.

“It’s a possibility. There is an issue. You have procedures within the state of California that are so screwed up,” he said.

The house needs to be removed as soon as possible to prevent danger to its downhill neighbors on MacArthur Drive, county officials said Wednesday. Wallace will also be required to show the county that geotechnical data collected at the foundation drilling is accurate, county Director of Planning Lisa Grote said.

Those downhill neighbors protested construction of the homes in 2003, and are also speaking to attorneys and weighing options, according to Michael Brodeur, a MacArthur resident and pastor of the Promised Land Fellowship church in San Francisco. His family’s home was one of three officially evacuated this week after the county yellow-tagged the buildings. The residents are staying in hotels and with family, and can only visit during the day to retrieve belongings.

The slide may also undermine 608 Larchmont Drive, where stressed homeowner Anna Hasbun was crying Wednesday afternoon after being told it would be wise to leave.

Unlike in Broadmoor, there was no new construction in Brisbane, Smith said.

A home on ParrottAve. in unincorporated San Mateo remains yellow-tagged.

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