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December 13, 2010 at 9:55 AM

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A rude awakening: couple heard Burke-Gilman slide

Posted by Susan Gilmore

The Burke-Gilman Trail was blocked by a mudslide about 5 a.m. Monday at Northeast 127th and Riviera Place Northeast in Lake City.

Allan and Signe Tencer were awakened by a loud cracking noise and then a crushing sound. They looked out their window and saw mud and trees and downed power lines spread out in front of their house.

One power pole had come crashing down on their garage, dropping a transformer through the roof.

They called 911 and reported the mudslide. Police arriving at the scene told the Tencers to stay inside, due to the danger of downed, live, power lines.

Allan Tencer said that just five minutes earlier they heard their newspaper being delivered. "This is one of those things like when you're in a near-miss car accident, it doesn't hit you right away." Allan said. "My pulse raced, and I started to sweat thinking what could have happened."

Signe Tencer said, "My stomach was in knots."

Allan said he was surprised this happened when the storm was over. Alan Tencer is a professor of orthopedics at the University of Washington. Signe is a ski instructor at Summit at Snoqualmie. Their cars, parked in front of their house, are temporarily stuck.

One car has power lines six inches from the roof and the other has mud three feet up the side of it. Their house is relatively unscathed, other than the hole in the garage roof. Tree branches just missed the house.

The Burke-Gilman Trail above their house is blocked by the mudslide.

Allan quipped, "We're not trapped. We have bikes."

And he added: "It's just one of those things. It's Seattle."

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