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Caltrans May Have To Pay Damages For Deadly 2003 Mudslide

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SAN BERNARDINO (AP) — The California Department of Transportation may have to pay damages for a 2003 mudslide that killed 14 people at a mountain camp in San Bernardino County.

A jury last week found Caltrans partly responsible for the slide that tore through a church camp in Waterman Canyon where families were celebrating Christmas Day. The San Bernardino Sun says the jury is scheduled to begin deliberations Tuesday on how much the agency must pay St. Sophia Greek Orthodox Church and its foundation.

The church itself was found 69 percent responsible for the slide at its camp.

Two years ago, the church paid $13 million to settle lawsuits by family members. It then sued the transportation agency, claiming construction of a highway above the campground diverted water and debris down slopes denuded by a recent fire.

(©2010 CBS Local Media, a division of CBS Radio Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. Wire services contributed to this report.)

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