Natural occurance. Thanks.I was the project manager for the Peek's Creek environmental/cleanup response and saw the area where the debris flow started and there were no houses built on this area. This area was solid rock that had been covered with shallow soils and once saturated the soils gave way and flowed down into the valley basically following Peek's Creek itself. The homes destroyed and lives lost were in the valley.
We had a water washed bank down below our house when I was younger. There was nothing but red clay mud and a few jack pines. Over the years, this made a gully that ran into Webbs Branch when it rained hard. Pines are rooted close to the ground---clay mud loves water.
Believe it or not, someone put a double wide trailor there in the 70's and guess what? Yeah, it could have been prevented, but the folks who sold that dabble of property failed to tell the 'new' folks that they had reseeded and that the trees were new growth. A hillbilly would have known. Mountain1, I know you know where I am talking about.