Skip to main content
U.S. flag

An official website of the United States government

Comprehensive Global Database of Earthquake-Induced Landslide Events and Their Impacts (ver. 2.0, February 2022)

February 1, 2023

Currently, there are many datasets describing landslides caused by individual earthquakes, and global inventories of earthquake-induced landslides (EQIL). However, until recently, there were no datasets that provide a comprehensive description of the impacts of earthquake-induced landslide events. In this data release, we present an up-to-date, comprehensive global database containing all literature-documented earthquake-induced landslide events for the 249-year period from 1772 through August 2021. The database represents an update of the catalog developed by Seal et al. (2020), which summarized events through March 2020 and was based on the catalog developed by Nowicki Jessee et al. (2020). The revised catalog contains 281 historical earthquakes, 162 of which include documented landslide fatality counts. This represents an addition of 17 earthquakes since the previous version, nine with documented landslide fatalities, and a removal of two duplicate entries. The database includes (where available) information on: Earthquake size (moment magnitude (Mw), surface-wave magnitude (Ms), and body-wave magnitude (mb)). Depth. Earthquake fault type. Date and time. Location. The availability of a USGS ShakeMap, which estimates the spatial distribution of ground shaking (Worden and Wald, 2016). The availability of a geospatial landslide inventory Information about landslide occurrence (number of landslides, area or volume of landsliding, area affected by landsliding, landslide magnitude). Earthquake/landslide impact (total fatalities, landslide fatalities, and number of injuries due to the effects of the earthquake). The full database of all known landslide-triggering events is provided as "EQIL Database 2022.csv," including information on the data source(s) for each data component. A subset of the database, showing only those events for which landslide fatality counts are available, is provided as "EQIL Database LSFatality 2022.csv." This subset only includes those columns from "EQIL Database 2022.csv" which are necessary for landslide fatality data analysis and omits columns such as source columns and secondary values. Figure 1: Global map of all documented earthquake-induced landslide events occuring between 1772 - August 2020. Data Collection Methodology Data regarding landslide occurrence were compiled from the USGS Prompt Assessment of Global Earthquakes for Response Catalog (PAGER-CAT; Allen et al., 2009), the USGS Advanced National Seismic System (ANSS) Comprehensive Earthquake Catalog (ComCat; USGS, 2017), the International Disaster Database from the Centre for Research on the Epidemiology of Disasters (EM-DAT; Guha-Sapir et al., 2017), the USGS Preliminary Determination of Epicenters catalog (PDE; USGS n.d.), the American Geophysical Union Landslide Blog (Petley, 2020), and major articles in the literature (Keefer, 1984, 2002; Rodriguez et al., 1999; Hancox et al., 2002). These data were then cross-checked with the recent comprehensive database of landslide-triggering events from the study of Tanyas et al. (2017). Moment magnitude (Mw) was the preferred magnitude for earthquake events, collected primarily from the USGS PAGER-CAT (Allen et al., 2009) and ANSS ComCat (USGS, 2017) systems. In cases where more than one magnitude source was available, the EHB (EHB: Engdahl, van der Hilst and Buland, 1998) catalog was used. In cases where the EHB source was not available, the Global Centroid-Moment Tensor (CMT; Ekström et al., 2012) source was chosen, followed by the USGS PDE (USGS n.d.) catalog. For events in which moment magnitude values were not available in USGS PAGER-CAT (Allen et al., 2009) or ANSS ComCat (USGS, 2017) systems, the Global Earthquake Model Earthquake Consequences Database (GEMECD,; So, 2014) was the preferred source, followed by major articles in the literature (Keefer, 1984, Rodriguez, 1999). Number of landslides counts for each event were obtained from the literature, where possible. In cases where more than one landslide count was available, the values are listed in order of publication date, with the most recent published value deemed the primary estimate. Fatality and landslide fatality counts were collected from the USGS PAGER-CAT (Allen et al., 2009), EMDAT (Guha-Sapir et al., 2017), the Catalog of Damaging Earthquakes in the World (UTSU;, and the Global Earthquake Model Earthquake Consequences Database (GEMECD,; So, 2014). When fatality counts were not available through these main databases, they were found in news articles or publications, as described in the data table. When conflicting fatality counts arose, we elected to use the number from the most recent, comprehensive source (thus deemed most reliable), or that was recorded in the largest number of sources. Discrepancies are discussed in database annotations. When no information was available on landslide fatalities, no fatality count was included. However, in cases when there were zero total fatalities recorded for an event, a zero was recorded for landslide fatalities and listed using the same source. References Cited Allen, T. I., Marano, K. D., Earle, P. S., & Wald, D. J. (2009). PAGER-CAT: A Composite Earthquake Catalog for Calibrating Global Fatality Models. Seismological Research Letters, 80(1), 57-62. Ekström, G., Nettles, M., & Dziewo?ski, A. M. (2012). The global CMT project 2004-2010: Centroid-moment tensors for 13,017 earthquakes. Physics of the Earth and Planetary Interiors, 200, 1-9. Engdahl, E. R., van der Hilst, R., & Buland, R. (1998). Global teleseismic earthquake relocation with improved travel times and procedures for depth determination. Bulletin of the Seismological Society of America, 88(3), 722-743. Guha-Sapir, D., Below, R., & Hoyois, Ph. (2017). EM-DAT: The CRED/OFDA International Disaster Université Catholique de Louvain - Brussels - Belgium. Hancox, G. T., Perrin, N. D., & Dellow, G. (2002). Recent studies of historical earthquake-induced landsliding, ground damage, and MM intensity in New Zealand . Bulletin of the New Zealand Society for Earthquake Engineering, 35(2), 59-95. Keefer, D. (1984). Landslides caused by earthquakes. Geological Society of America Bulletin, 95, 406-421.<406:LCBE>2.0.CO;2 Keefer, D. K. (2002). Investigating landslides caused by earthquakes-a historical review. Surveys in Geophysics, 23(6), 473-510. Nowicki Jessee, M.A., Hamburger, M.W., Ferrara, M.R., McLean, A., & FitzGerald, C. (2020). A global dataset and model of earthquake-induced landslide fatalities. Landslides. Petley, D. (2020). The landslide blog. Retrieved from Rodriguez, C. E., Bommer, J. J., & Chandler, R. J. (1999). Earthquake-induced landslides: 1980-1997. Soil Dynamics and Earthquake Engineering, 18, 325-346. Ruiz, P., Carr, M. J., Alvarado, G. E., Soto, G. J., Mana, S., Feigenson, M. D., & Sáenz, L. F. (2019). Coseismic landslide susceptibility analysis using LiDAR data PGA attenuation and GIS: The case of Poás volcano, Costa Rica, Central America. In Poás Volcano (pp. 79-118). Springer, Cham. Seal, D.M., Jessee, A.N., Hamburger, M.W., and Allstadt, K.E., 2020, Comprehensive Global Database of Earthquake-Induced Landslide Events and Their Impacts: U.S. Geological Survey data release, So, E. (2014). Introduction to the GEM Earthquake Consequences Database (GEMECD). GEM Technical Report 2014-14 V1.0.0. GEM Foundation - Pavia - Italy. 10.13117/GEM.VULN-MOD.TR2014.14 Tanyas, H., van Westen, C. J., Allstadt, K. E., Nowicki Jessee, M. A., Gorum, T., Jibson, R. W., Godt, J. W., Sato, H. P., Schmidt, R. G., Odin, M., & Hovius, N. (2017). Presentation and Analysis of a Worldwide Database of Earthquake-Induced Landslide Inventories. Journal of Geophysical Research: Earth Surface, 122(10), 1991-2015. http:// USGS. (2017). ANSS comprehensive earthquake catalog (ComCat). USGS. (n.d.). The Preliminary Determination of Epicenters (PDE) Bulletin. Accessed 1 May 2020 Worden, C. B., & Wald, D. J. (2016). ShakeMap Manual Online: Technical manual, user’s guide, and software guide. U.S. Geological Survey.

Publication Year 2023
Title Comprehensive Global Database of Earthquake-Induced Landslide Events and Their Impacts (ver. 2.0, February 2022)
DOI 10.5066/P9RG3MBE
Authors Dylan M. Seal, Anna Nowicki Jessee, Michael Hamburger, Carter Dills, Kate E Allstadt
Product Type Data Release
Record Source USGS Digital Object Identifier Catalog
USGS Organization Earthquake Hazards Program