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Natural Hazards

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Costs and consequences of natural hazards can be enormous; each year more people and infrastructure are at risk. We develop and apply hazards science to help protect U.S. safety, security, and economic well being. These scientific observations, analyses, and research are crucial for the Nation to become more resilient to natural hazards.

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Filter Total Items: 181
Date published: June 22, 2018
Status: Active

Seattle, WA Landslide Information

More Information on Seattle's Project Impact.

Date published: June 19, 2018
Status: Active

USGS Woods Hole Coastal and Marine Science Center Samples Repository-Collections Management

Our Mission Statement

The mission of the Samples Repository (Buczkowski, 2018) is to

1. serve as the USGS repository for geological, biological, and geochemical samples collected through field research sponsored by the WHCMSC,

2. provide long-term storage of these samples collected by WHCMSC scientists and affiliated researchers under controlled conditions to ensure...

Date published: June 19, 2018
Status: Active

USGS Woods Hole Coastal and Marine Science Center Samples Repository- Facilities

The USGS Woods Hole Coastal and Marine Science Center's Samples Repository is co-located on the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution's Quissett Campus at 384 Woods Hole Road in Woods Hole, Massachusetts.

The K.O. Emery Geotechnical Wing serves as the primary storage location for all geological, biological, and geochemical samples collected through USGS research, or in the permanent...

Date published: June 18, 2018
Status: Active

USGS Woods Hole Coastal and Marine Science Center Samples Repository

Since 2002, the Woods Hole Coastal and Marine Science Center’s Samples Repository (WHCMSC) has been supporting research by providing secure storage for geological, biological, and geochemical samples; maintaining organization and an active inventory of these sample collections; as well as by providing access to these collections for study and reuse.

Over the years, local storage...

Date published: June 18, 2018
Status: Active

Landslides Glossary

Definitions of landslide science terms.

Date published: June 18, 2018
Status: Active

Additional Landslide Information

More sites relating to landslides.

Date published: June 18, 2018
Status: Active

Fact Sheets

Brief summaries of landslides science and research in plain language.

Click on the Publications tab to see the fact sheets.

Date published: June 18, 2018
Status: Active

Significant Landslides in the United States

Significant Landslide Events 1906-1999

Please Note: Additional landslides may be added as they occur and are evaluated over time.

Date published: June 8, 2018
Status: Active

Landslides 101

What is a landslide? Where do landslides occur? Why study landslides?

Date published: June 8, 2018
Status: Active

State Geologists & Geological Surveys

Geological Surveys, city and county governments, and professional consultants may have specific landslide information for your area.

Date published: June 8, 2018
Status: Active

Seattle Area, Washington

Back to Current Monitoring Stations Map

 

Real-time DataNational Weather Service:

Contacts: Rex Baum, The National Weather Service and the City of Seattle, Washington
Date published: June 8, 2018
Status: Active

Portland, Oregon

Back to Current Monitoring Stations Map

 

Real-Time Data

Instrument installation at this site took place during the summer and fall of 2006. These instruments are used to monitor and detect changes in local conditions, including...

Contacts: Jonathan Godt, Rex Baum, Portland State University, The Oregon Department of Geology and Mineral Industries
Filter Total Items: 99
Date published: February 15, 2018

Coastal Groundwater Chemical Data from the North and South Shores of Long Island, New York

Groundwater data were collected in the spring and fall of 2008 from three sites representing different geological settings and biogeochemical conditions within the surficial glacial aquifer of Long Island, NY. 

Date published: February 15, 2018

National Assessment of Shoreline Change: A GIS compilation of Updated Vector Shorelines and Associated Shoreline Change Data for the Southeast Atlantic Coast

U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) is conducting a national assessment of coastal change hazards.  One component of this research effort, the National Assessment of Shoreline Change Project documents changes in shoreline position as a proxy for coastal change. 

Date published: February 15, 2018

National Assessment of Shoreline Change: A GIS compilation of Updated Vector Shorelines and Associated Shoreline Change Data for the Gulf of Mexico Coast

U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) is conducting a national assessment of coastal change hazards.  One component of this research effort, the National Assessment of Shoreline Change Project, documents changes in shoreline position as a proxy for coastal change. Shoreline position is an easily understood feature representing the historical location of a beach position through time. 

Date published: February 15, 2018

Topographic, imagery, and raw data associated with unmanned aerial systems (UAS) flights over Black Beach, Falmouth, Massachusetts on 18 March 2016

The U.S. Geological Survey worked in collaboration with members of the Marine Biological Laboratory and Woods Hole Analytics at Black Beach, in Falmouth, Massachusetts to explore scientific research demands on UAS technology for topographic and habitat mapping applications. 

Date published: February 15, 2018

Data and calculations to support the study of the sea-air flux of methane and carbon dioxide on the West Spitsbergen margin in June 2014

This dataset collected on the West Spitsbergen margin during U.S. Geological Survey Coastal and Marine Geology Program Field Activity 2014-013-FA, which was carried out in conjunction with the University of Tromso and the GEOMAR Helmholtz Centre for Ocean Research Kiel on the R/V Helmer Hanssen.

Date published: February 15, 2018

Water column physical and chemical properties of Cenote Bang, a component of the Ox Bel Ha cave network within the subterranean estuary coastal aquifer of the Yucatan Peninsula, from December 2013 to January 2016

This dataset, collected during four field events during U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) Coastal and Marine Geology Program Field Activities 2015-013-FA and 2016-003-FA in conjunction with Texas A&M University reports geochemical properties of the water column from Cenote Bang, a component of the Ox Bel Ha cave network that is located 5 km inland from the coast. 

Date published: February 14, 2018

Key Findings for Scenario-Based Assessment for Nor'easters

Percentage of sandy beaches very likely (probability > 0.9) to experience erosion associated with collision, overwash, and inundation during class 1-3 nor’easter impact.

Date published: February 14, 2018

Key Findings for Scenario-Based Assessment for Hurricanes

Percentage of sandy beaches very likely (probability > 0.9) to experience erosion associated with collision, overwash, and inundation during category 1-5 hurricane landfall.

Date published: February 14, 2018

Multichannel sparker seismic-reflection data of field activity 2016-656-FA; between Icy Point and Dixon Entrance, Gulf of Alaska from 2016-08-07 to 2016-08-26

This data release contains high-resolution multichannel seismic (MCS) reflection data collected in August of 2016 along the southeast Alaska continental margin. Structure perpendicular MCS profiles were collected along the Queen Charlotte-Fairweather fault. The data were collected aboard the R/V Norseman using a Delta sparker sound source and recorded on a 64-channel digital streamer...

Date published: February 12, 2018

Shoreline change rates in salt marsh units in Edwin B. Forsythe National Wildlife Refuge, New Jersey

This dataset displays shoreline change rates at the Edwin B. Forsythe National Wildlife Refuge (EBFNWR), which spans over Great Bay, Little Egg Harbor, and Barnegat Bay in New Jersey, USA

Date published: February 12, 2018

Sea floor sediment samples, seabed imagery, and CTD data collected in Stellwagen Bank National Marine Sanctuary, MA in 2015, U.S. Geological Survey Field Activity 2015-062-FA

This field activity is part of the effort to map geologic substrates of the Stellwagen Bank National Marine Sanctuary region off Boston, Massachusetts. The overall goal is to develop high-resolution (1:25,000) interpretive maps, based on multibeam sonar data and seabed sampling, showing surficial geology and seabed sediment dynamics.

Date published: February 12, 2018

Continuous Bathymetry and Elevation Models of the Massachusetts Coastal Zone and Continental Shelf

Integrated terrain models covering 16,357 square kilometers of the Massachusetts coastal zone and offshore waters were built to provide a continuous elevation and bathymetry terrain model for ocean planning purposes.  A Triangulated Irregular Network was created from public-domain bathymetric and LiDAR data using the ArcGIS terrain-model framework and then interpolated into a 32-bit GeoTiff....

Filter Total Items: 1,774
Year Published: 2017

Viscous relaxation of Ganymede's impact craters: Constraints on heat flux

Measurement of crater depths in Ganymede’s dark terrain have revealed substantial numbers of unusually shallow craters indicative of viscous relaxation [see companion paper: Singer, K.N., Schenk, P. M., Bland, M.T., McKinnon, W.B., (2017). Relaxed impact craters on Ganymede: Regional variations and high heat flow. Icarus, submitted]. These...

Bland, Michael T.; Singer, Kelsi N.; McKinnon, William B.; Schenk, Paul M.
Bland, M. T. and McKinnon, W. B. Viscous relaxation of Ganymede's impact craters: Constraints on heat flux. Icarus 296, 275-288.

Year Published: 2017

Application and evaluation of a rapid response earthquake-triggered landslide model to the 25 April 2015 Mw 7.8 Gorkha earthquake, Nepal

The 25 April 2015 Mw 7.8 Gorkha earthquake produced strong ground motions across an approximately 250 km by 100 km swath in central Nepal. To assist disaster response activities, we modified an existing earthquake-triggered landslide model based on a Newmark sliding block analysis to estimate the extent and intensity of landsliding...

Gallen, Sean F.; Clark, Marin K.; Godt, Jonathan W.; Roback, Kevin; Niemi, Nathan A
Attribution: Natural Hazards
Gallen, S. F., Clark, M. K., Godt, J. W., Roback, K., and Niemi, N. A., 2017, Application and evaluation of a rapid response earthquake-triggered landslide model to the 25 April 2015 Mw 7.8 Gorkha earthquake, Nepal: Tectonophysics, v. 714-715, p. 173-187.

Year Published: 2017

Evolution of strain localization in variable-width three-dimensional unsaturated laboratory-scale cut slopes

To experimentally validate a recently developed theory for predicting the stability of cut slopes under unsaturated conditions, the authors measured increasing strain localization in unsaturated slope cuts prior to abrupt failure. Cut slope width and moisture content were controlled and varied in a laboratory, and a sliding door that extended the...

Morse, Michael S.; Lu, Ning; Wayllace, Alexandra; Godt, Jonathan W.
Attribution: Natural Hazards
Morse, M.S.,Lu, N., Wayllace, A., and Godt, J.W., 2017, Evolution of strain localization in variable-width three-dimensional unsaturated laboratory-scale cut slopes: Journal of Engineering Mechanics, v. 143, no. 9, doi.org/10.1061/(ASCE)EM.1943-7889.0001286

Year Published: 2017

The planetary data system

In the early 1980s, the Space Science Board (SSB) of the National Research Council was concerned about the poor and inconsistent treatment of scientific information returned from NASA’s space science missions. The SSB formed a panel [The Committee on Data Management and Computation (CODMAC)] to assess the situation and make recommendations to NASA...

Acton, Charles; Slavney, Susan; Arvidson, Raymond E.; Gaddis, Lisa R.; Gordon, Mitchell; Lavoie, Susan
Acton, C., Slavney, S., Arvidson, R., Gaddis, L., Gordon, M. and Lavoie, Susan, 2017, The Planetary Data System, Lunar and Planetary Information Bulletin, Issue 150, Sept. 2017, pp. 2-12.

Year Published: 2017

An evaluation of sampling and full enumeration strategies for Fisher Jenks classification in big data settings

Large data contexts present a number of challenges to optimal choropleth map classifiers. Application of optimal classifiers to a sample of the attribute space is one proposed solution. The properties of alternative sampling-based classification methods are examined through a series of Monte Carlo simulations. The impacts of spatial...

Rey, Sergio J.; Stephens, Philip A.; Laura, Jason R.
Rey SJ, Stephens P, Laura J. An evaluation of sampling and full enumeration strategies for Fisher Jenks classification in big data settings. Transactions in GIS. 2017;21:796–810. https://doi.org/10.1111/tgis.12236

Year Published: 2017

NEHRP turns 40

This year, the National Earthquake Hazards Reduction Program (NEHRP) turns 40, four decades since the Earthquake Hazards Reduction Act of 1977 was enacted establishing the Program, spurring numerous federal, state, and community actions to reduce earthquake losses in the U.S.A. and its territories and setting a standard for earthquake loss‐...

Leith, William S.
Seismological Research Letters v.88 n.4 July-August 2017

Year Published: 2017

The U.S. Geological Survey Astrogeology Science Center

In 1960, Eugene Shoemaker and a small team of other scientists founded the field of astrogeology to develop tools and methods for astronauts studying the geology of the Moon and other planetary bodies. Subsequently, in 1962, the U.S. Geological Survey Branch of Astrogeology was established in Menlo Park, California. In 1963, the Branch moved to...

Kestay, Laszlo P.; Vaughan, R. Greg; Gaddis, Lisa R.; Herkenhoff, Kenneth E.; Hagerty, Justin J.
Kestay, L.P., Vaughan, R.G., Gaddis, L.R., Herkenhoff, K.E., and Hagerty, J.J., 2017, The U.S. Geological Survey Astrogeology Science Center: U.S. Geological Survey Fact Sheet 2017–3038, 2 p., https://doi.org/10.3133/fs20173038.

Year Published: 2017

Geomorphology of comet 67P/Churyumov–Gerasimenko

We present a global geomorphological map of comet 67P/Churyumov–Gerasimenko (67P/C-G) using data acquired by the Rosetta Orbiter’s OSIRIS Narrow Angle Camera. The images used in our study were acquired between 2014 August and 2015 May, before 67P/C-G passed through perihelion. Imagery of the Southern hemisphere was included in our study...

Birch, Samuel P. D.; Tang, Y.; Hayes, A. G.; Kirk, Randolph L.; Bodewitz, D.; Campins, H.; Fernandez, Y.; de Freitas Bart, R.; Kutsop, N. W.; Sierks, H.; Soderblom, J. M.; Squyres, S. W.; Vincent, J.-B.
Birch, S.P.D., Tang, Y., Hayes, A.G., Kirk, R.L., Bodewits, D., Campins, H., Fernandez, Y., de Freitas, B.R., Kutsop, N.W., Sierks, H., Soderblom, J.M., Squyres, S.W., and Vincent, J-B., 2017, Geomorphology of comet 67P/Churyumov--Gerasimenko: Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, p. S50-S67, https://doi.org/10.1093/mnras/stx1096.

Year Published: 2017

Designing a solution to enable agency-academic scientific collaboration for disasters

As large-scale environmental disasters become increasingly frequent and more severe globally, people and organizations that prepare for and respond to these crises need efficient and effective ways to integrate sound science into their decision making. Experience has shown that integrating nongovernmental scientific expertise into disaster...

Mease, Lindley A.; Gibbs-Plessl, Theodora; Erickson, Ashley; Ludwig, Kristin A.; Reddy, Christopher M.; Lubchenco, Jane
Attribution: Natural Hazards
Mease, L. A., T. Gibbs-Plessl, A. L. Erickson, K. A. Ludwig, C. M. Reddy, and J. Lubchenco. 2017. Designing a solution to enable agency-academic scientific collaboration for disasters. Ecology and Society 22(2):18.

Year Published: 2017

Reducing risk where tectonic plates collide—U.S. Geological Survey subduction zone science plan

The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) serves the Nation by providing reliable scientific information and tools to build resilience in communities exposed to subduction zone earthquakes, tsunamis, landslides, and volcanic eruptions. Improving the application of USGS science to successfully reduce risk from these events relies on whole community efforts...

Gomberg, Joan S.; Ludwig, Kristin A.; Bekins, Barbara; Brocher, Thomas M.; Brock, John C.; Brothers, Daniel; Chaytor, Jason D.; Frankel, Arthur; Geist, Eric L.; Haney, Matt; Hickman, Stephen H.; Leith, William S.; Roeloffs, Evelyn A.; Schulz, William H.; Sisson, Thomas W.; Wallace, Kristi; Watt, Janet; Wein, Anne M.
Gomberg, J.S., Ludwig, K.A., Bekins, B.A., Brocher, T.M., Brock, J.C., Brothers, Daniel, Chaytor, J.D., Frankel, A.D., Geist, E.L., Haney, Matthew, Hickman, S.H., Leith, W.S., Roeloffs, E.A., Schulz, W.H., Sisson, T.W., Wallace, Kristi, Watt, J.T., Wein, Anne, 2017, Reducing risk where tectonic plates collide—U.S. Geological Survey subduction zone science plan: U.S. Geological Survey Circular 1428, 45 p., https://doi.org/10.3133/cir1428.

Year Published: 2017

Reducing risk where tectonic plates collide

Most of the world’s earthquakes, tsunamis, landslides, and volcanic eruptions are caused by the continuous motions of the many tectonic plates that make up the Earth’s outer shell. The most powerful of these natural hazards occur in subduction zones, where two plates collide and one is thrust beneath another. The U.S. Geological Survey’s (USGS) “...

Gomberg, Joan S.; Ludwig, Kristin A.
Gomberg, J.S., and Ludwig, K.A., 2017, Reducing risk where tectonic plates collide: U.S. Geological Survey Fact Sheet 2017–3024, 4 p., https://doi.org/10.3133/fs20173024.

Year Published: 2017

The morphology of transverse aeolian ridges on Mars

A preliminary survey of publicly released high resolution digital terrain models (DTMs) produced by the High Resolution Imaging Science Experiment (HiRISE) camera on Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter identified transverse aeolian ridges (TARs) in 154 DTMs in latitudes from 50°S to 40°N. Consistent with previous surveys, the TARs identified in HiRISE...

Geissler, Paul; Wilgus, Justin T.
Paul E. Geissler and Justin T. Wilgus, 2017, The morphology of transverse aeolian ridges on Mars, Aeolian Research, v. 26, p. 63-71, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.aeolia.2016.08.008.

Filter Total Items: 2,254
Lava flowing
July 4, 2018

Kīlauea Volcano — Lava Channel Bend

The lava channel from fissure 8 jumped its banks near Kapoho Crater where the channel makes a 90 degree bend. The flow within the channel was diverted around a constricted area and joined the channel again "downstream" to the south (left).

July 4, 2018

Kīlauea Volcano — Flows Near Kapoho Ag. and Beach Lots

Near the coast, the northern margin of the flow field is still oozing pasty lava at several points in the area of Kapoho Agricultural and Beach Lots.

View of a crater with clouds in the background
July 4, 2018

Kīlauea Volcano — Sunrise at Haleam`uma`u Crater

Sunrise view of Halema‘uma‘u crater as seen from the USGS observation point from Volcano House in Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park.

View of a crater
July 3, 2018

Kīlauea Volcano — Sunrise at Halema`uma`u Crater

Inward slumping of Halema‘uma‘u continues in response to ongoing subsidence at Kīlauea Volcano's summit. This image, taken from a temporary observation post located at Volcano House, shows steep walls on the western side of the crater and sloping piles of rubble from rockfall events.

Lava flowing out of a fissure at night
July 3, 2018

Kīlauea Volcano — Fissure 8 Flow at Night

During the overnight hours, the UAS (Unoccupied Aircraft Systems) team flew sections of the lower East Rift Zone, monitoring fissure 8 activity and reports of small overflows from the lava channel. This view of fissure 8 and the upper lava channel shows roiling 

...
Lava flowing from an active fissure
July 3, 2018

Kīlauea Volcano — Fissure 8 Lava Flow

Fissure 8 and the upper lava channel, viewed from the early morning helicopter overflight of the lower East Rift Zone. Recent heavy rains have soaked into the still-warm tephra and the moisture rises as steam (right side of lava channel).

Geologist making observations of an active fissure
July 3, 2018

Kīlauea Volcano — Geologist Making Observations of Fissure 8

Fisheye lens photograph of a USGS geologist making observations of the 

...
Lava flowing
July 3, 2018

Kīlauea Volcano — Evolution of a Blocked Channel (Part 2)

Evolution of a blocked channel, image 2: While observing this area of the fissure 8 lava channel near Kapoho cone during the morning overflight, geologists witnesed an "apartment-building-sized" blockage within the channel give way and be pushed down stream by the pressurized lava behind. The dark portion within the red channel is the freed blockage. Lavacontinues to

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A blocked lava channel
July 3, 2018

Kīlauea Volcano — Evolution of a Blocked Channel (Part 1)

Evolution of a blocked channel, photo 1. A blockage of rafted material within the lava channel causes lava to flow over its banks near the Kapoho cone. In this section of the lava channel a cold lava flow from the 1960 eruption forms a barrier on the north side, which initially directed the channel to the southeast. A constriction in the channel formed at the bend where

...
Aerial shot showing lava flowing into residential area
July 2, 2018

Kīlauea Volcano — Lava at Kapoho Beach Lots

At the coast, the northern margin of the flow field is still oozing pasty lava at several points in the area of Kapoho Beach Lots.

Close up of a lava overflow
July 2, 2018

Kīlauea Volcano — Overfows

Close up image of overflows from the fissure 8 lava channel. Photograph taken during the morning overflight.

Drone shot looking at brightly colored red and orange lava flows
July 2, 2018

Kīlauea Volcano — Drone Over Lava Channel

USGS Mavic Pro drone image of the fissure 8 lava channel looking toward the vent. Overflows can be seen as incandescent spots beyond the channel margins. Drone flights and resultant imagery help scientists

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Filter Total Items: 343
Date published: March 23, 2018

Collecting clues to the geologic history and mineral resources of the Rio Grande Rise, southwest Atlantic Ocean

USGS scientists James Hein and Kira Mizell participated in a University of São Paulo research cruise to the western Rio Grande Rise, an underwater plateau in international waters of the Atlantic Ocean off Brazil.

Date published: March 23, 2018

Beach surveys planned near deadly California debris flows

Pacific Coastal and Marine Science Center researchers plan to survey selected beaches and parts of the shallow seafloor in Santa Barbara and Ventura counties from March 27-30.

Date published: March 22, 2018

USGS and NASA hold collaborative methane workshop

USGS and NASA held a joint workshop titled “From Cells to Satellites: Methane Biogeochemistry at Multiple Scales” on March 16 at NASA Ames Research Center in Mountain View, California.

Date published: March 20, 2018

USGS scientists lead investigation of tropical subterranean estuaries in the Yucatan Peninsula, Mexico!

USGS scientists lead investigation of tropical subterranean estuaries in the Yucatan Peninsula, Mexico!

Date published: March 16, 2018

Visiting scientist from Japan assisting shoreline-change studies in California

Masayuki Banno is spending a year-long sabbatical with the Pacific Coastal and Marine Science Center in Santa Cruz, California, collaborating with Patrick Barnard’s coastal-change group.

Date published: March 14, 2018

USGS Authors New Report on Seismic Hazard, Risk, and Design for South America

New seismic hazard and risk assessments can help at-risk communities prepare for future earthquake disasters

Date published: March 8, 2018

New 3D Measurements Improve Understanding of Geomagnetic Storm Hazards

Measurements of the three-dimensional structure of the earth, as opposed to the one-dimensional models typically used, can help scientists more accurately determine which areas of the United States are most vulnerable to blackouts during hazardous geomagnetic storms.

Date published: March 8, 2018

Fulbright Scholar Joins Coral Reef Project at Pacific Coastal and Marine Science Center

The Pacific Coastal and Marine Science Center (PCMSC) in Santa Cruz, California, recently welcomed Andrew Pomeroy, a Fulbright scholar from Australia who will spend approximately 6 months here conducting research on sediment movement in coral reef systems.

Date published: March 8, 2018

Modern Perspective on Gas Hydrates

After lying hidden in sediments for thousands of years, delicate frozen gas structures are in the spotlight for both scientific research and the national interest. These structures, known as gas hydrate, are being investigated by scientists the world over for their possible contributions to the global energy mix, as well as their potential interaction with the environment.

Date published: February 25, 2018

Magnitude 7.5 Earthquake, Papua New Guinea

The USGS has up-to-date details on the February 25, 2018 event.

Date published: February 23, 2018

USGS in South Korea

 For several years, KIGAM, the Korean Institute of Geoscience and Mineral Resources, has hosted an international program for geoscience resources (IS-Geo).  The IS-Geo program draws together federal and private-sector professionals from the international community to discuss a range of specific geoscience and mineral topics.