Key Messages: Reducing exposure to earthquake-triggered landslides

Key Messages: Reducing exposure to earthquake-triggered landslides

Experience in recent large earthquakes provides information on where landslides are most likely to happen, which we use to provide clear and simple guidance for how to minimise exposure to future earthquake-triggered landslides.

This guidance is targeted at those supporting householder and community decision-making in preparing for large earthquakes, choosing locations for houses or key infrastructure, and dealing with potential future landslide impacts (e.g., local government and NGOs).

Our guidelines help to identify the safest locations in the landscape:

o The first and most important guideline to minimise exposure to earthquake-triggered landslides is to choose a location where the angle to the skyline is minimised, and is below 25° if at all possible

o Second, locations near steep channels (those with slopes of >15°) should be avoided, especially if there are many steep hillsides (>35°) upstream. Any houses or other key infrastructure should be kept at least 10 m away from the banks of such channels, to minimise the chances of inundation by debris flows

o Third, always seek to minimise the slope of the ground at your location when deciding where to site key infrastructure.

These guidelines should be used in combination with local knowledge and experience, specialised geological knowledge, and formal hazard assessment where available. In the absence of these other sources of information, these guidelines provide a first approach that can guide decision-making.

Our full report can be downloaded here: Landslide Guidelines