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Map data from landslides triggered by Hurricane Maria in a section of Naranjito, Puerto Rico

June 1, 2021

Hurricane Maria caused widespread landsliding throughout Puerto Rico during September 2017. Previous detailed landslide inventories following the hurricane include Bessette-Kirton et al. (2017, 2019). Here we continue that work with an in-depth look at a portion of northwest Naranjito, which is a municipality in the northeastern part of the main island. To study a characteristic sample of landslides in Naranjito, we mapped all visible individual landslides in an approximately triangular area 2.3 km wide by 1.9 km long. The boundary of our mapping was defined by previous studies (Bessette-Kirton et al., 2019). We used aerial imagery collected between 9-15 October 2017 (Quantum Spatial, Inc., 2017) to map landslide source and runout areas, and 1-m-resolution pre-event and post-event lidar (U.S. Geological Survey, 2018, 2020) as a digital base map for mapping. Difficulties with using these tools arose when aerial imagery was not correctly georeferenced to the lidar, when cloud cover was present in all images of an area, and in interpreting failure modes using only two-dimensional aerial photos. These difficulties with aerial imagery were partially resolved using the lidar. The map data comprises headscarp points, travel distance lines, source area polygons, and affected area polygons that are provided as point, line, and polygon shapefiles that may be viewed using common geographic information systems. Various characteristics of the landslides and their geomorphic settings are included in attribute tables of the mapped features, and this information is described in the "Attribute Summary" document in the accompanying files. Quantitative attributes (e.g., failure travel distance, failure fall height, watershed contributing area, etc.) were determined using tools available with the ESRI ArcMap v. 10.6.1 geographic information system. Any use of trade, firm, or product names is for descriptive purposes only and does not imply endorsement by the U.S. Government.


Bessette-Kirton, E.K., Cerovski-Darrian, C., Schulz, W.H., Coe, J.A., Kean, J.W., Godt, J.W., Thomas, M.A. and Hughes, K.S., 2019, Landslides triggered by Hurricane Maria: Assessment of an extreme event in Puerto Rico: GSA Today, v. 29, no. 6.

Bessette-Kirton, E.K., Coe, J.A., Godt, J.W., Kean, J.W., Rengers, F.K., Schulz, W.H., Baum, R.L., Jones, E.S., and Staley, D.M., 2017, Map data showing concentration of landslides caused by Hurricane Maria in Puerto Rico: U.S. Geological Survey data release,

Quantum Spatial, Inc., 2017 FEMA PR Imagery: (accessed October 2017).

U.S. Geological Survey, 2018, USGS NED Original Product Resolution PR Puerto Rico 2015: (accessed October 2018).

U.S. Geological Survey, 2020, USGS NED Original Product Resolution PR Puerto Rico 2015: (accessed October 2018).

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