Landslide Hazards Program

Publications

Filter Total Items: 923
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Year Published: 2020

Measuring basal force fluctuations of debris flows using seismic recordings and empirical green's functions

We present a novel method for measuring the fluctuating basal normal and shear stresses of debris flows by using along‐channel seismic recordings. Our method couples a simple parameterization of a debris flow as a seismic source with direct measurements of seismic path effects using empirical Green's functions generated with a force hammer. We...

Allstadt, Kate; Farin, Maxime; Iverson, Richard M.; Obryk, Maciej; Kean, Jason W.; Tsai, Victor C.; Rapstine, Thomas D; Logan, Matthew

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Year Published: 2020

Landslides after wildfire: Initiation, magnitude, and mobility

In the semiarid Southwestern USA, wildfires are commonly followed by runoff-generated debris flows because wildfires remove vegetation and ground cover, which reduces soil infiltration capacity and increases soil erodibility. At a study site in Southern California, we initially observed runoff-generated debris flows in the first year following...

Rengers, Francis K.; McGuire, Luke; Oakley, Nina S.; Kean, Jason W.; Staley, Dennis M.; Tang, Hui

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Year Published: 2020

Reconstructing the velocity and deformation of a rapid landslide using multiview video

Noncontact measurements of spatially varied ground surface deformation during landslide motion can provide important constraints on landslide mechanics. Here, we present and test a new method for extracting measurements of rapid landslide surface displacement and velocity (accelerations of approximately 1 m/s2) using sequences of stereo...

Rapstine, Thomas D; Rengers, Francis K.; Allstadt, Kate; Iverson, Richard M.; Smith, Joel B.; Obryk, Maciej; Logan, M.; Olsen, M. J.

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Year Published: 2020

A 36-year record of rock avalanches in the Saint Elias Mountains of Alaska, with implications for future hazards

Glacial retreat and mountain-permafrost degradation resulting from rising global temperatures have the potential to impact the frequency and magnitude of landslides in glaciated environments. Several recent events, including the 2015 Taan Fiord rock avalanche, which triggered a tsunami with one of the highest wave runups ever recorded, have called...

Erin K. Bessette-Kirton; Coe, Jeffrey A.

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Year Published: 2020

Temporal and spatial variability of shallow soil moisture across four planar hillslopes on a tropical ocean island, San Cristóbal, Galápagos

Study Region: This paper provides a summary of findings from temporal and spatial studies of soil water content on planar hillslopes across the equatorial island of San Cristóbal, Galápagos (Ecuador). Study Focus: Soil water content (SWC) was measured to generate temporal and spatial records to determine seasonal variation and to investigate how...

Percy, Madelyn S.; Riveros-Iregui, Diego A.; Mirus, Benjamin B.; Benninger, Larry K.

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Year Published: 2020

Landslides across the United States: Occurrence, susceptibility, and data limitations

Detailed information about landslide occurrence is the foundation for advancing process understanding, susceptibility mapping, and risk reduction. Despite the recent revolution in digital elevation data and remote sensing technologies, landslide mapping remains resource intensive. Consequently, a modern, comprehensive map of landslide occurrence...

Mirus, Benjamin B.; Jones, Eric S.; Baum, Rex L.; Godt, Jonathan W.; Slaughter, Stephen Lee; Crawford, Matthew; Lancaster, Jeremy T.; Stanley, Thomas; Kirschbaum, Dalia; Burns, William J.; Schmitt, Robert G.; Lindsey, Kassandra O; McCoy, Kevin

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Year Published: 2020

The future of landslides’ past—A framework for assessing consecutive landsliding systems

Landslides often happen where they have already occurred in the past. The potential of landslides to reduce or enhance conditions for further landsliding has long been recognized and has often been reported, but the mechanisms and spatial and temporal scales of these processes have previously received little specific attention. Despite a...

Temme, A.; Guzzetti, F.; Samia, J.; Mirus, Benjamin B.

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Year Published: 2020

Map depicting susceptibility to landslides triggered by intense rainfall, Puerto Rico

Landslides in Puerto Rico range from nuisances to deadly events. Centuries of agricultural and urban modification of the landscape have perturbed many already unstable hillsides on the tropical island. One of the main triggers of mass wasting on the island is the high-intensity rainfall that is associated with tropical atmospheric systems. Puerto...

Hughes, K. Stephen; Schulz, William
Hughes, K.S., and Schulz, W.H., 2020, Map depicting susceptibility to landslides triggered by intense rainfall, Puerto Rico: U.S. Geological Survey Open-File Report 2020–1022, 91 p., 1 plate, scale 1:150,000, https://doi.org/10.3133/ofr20201022.

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Year Published: 2020

The influence of frost weathering on the debris flow sediment supply in an alpine basin

Rocky, alpine mountains are prone to mass wasting from debris flows. The Chalk Cliffs study area (central Colorado, USA) produces debris flows annually. These debris flows are triggered when overland flow driven by intense summer convective storms mobilizes large volumes of sediment within the channel network. Understanding the debris flow...

Rengers, Francis K.; Kean, Jason W.; Reitman, Nadine G.; Smith, Joel B.; Coe, Jeffrey A.; McGuire, Luke

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Year Published: 2020

Using a dense seismic array to determine structure and site effects of the Two Towers earthflow in northern California

We deployed a network of 68 three-component geophones on the slow moving Two Towers earthflow in northern California. We compute horizontal-to-vertical spectral ratios (HVSRs) from the ambient seismic field. The HVSRs have two prominent peaks, one near 1.23 Hz and another between 4 and 8 Hz at most stations. The 1.23 Hz resonance is a property...

Thomas, Amanda M.; Spica, Zack; Bodmer, Miles; Schulz, William; Roering, Joshua J.

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Year Published: 2019

Physically based estimation of rainfall thresholds triggering shallow landslides in volcanic slopes of southern Italy

On the 4th and 5th of March 2005, about 100 rainfall-induced landslides occurred along volcanic slopes of Camaldoli Hill in Naples, Italy. These started as soil slips in the upper substratum of incoherent and welded volcaniclastic deposits, then evolved downslope according to debris avalanche and debris flow mechanisms. This specific case of slope...

Fusco, F.; De Vita, P.; Mirus, Benjamin B.; Baum, Rex L.; Allocca, V.; Tufano, R.; Calcaterra, D.

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Year Published: 2019

An initial assessment of areas where landslides could enter the West Arm of Glacier Bay, Alaska and implications for tsunami hazards

Tsunamis generated by landslides in Glacier Bay are uncommon, but have potential to be extraordinarily destructive when they occur. This article identifies areas that are susceptible to landslides that could generate tsunamis and discusses approaches to characterize hazard and risk from these events.

Coe, Jeffrey A.; Schmitt, Robert G.; Bessette-Kirton, Erin