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New technology helps geologists create detailed landslide maps

2009-4-25 00:14| 发布者: geology| 查看: 3259| 评论: 0

PORTLAND -- Oregon geologists are using new technology to create some of the most accurate depictions of landslide locations across Oregon that can be used to protect homeowners in the future.

“A new laser-based terrain mapping system called lidar (light detection and ranging) allowed the geologists to create a new generation of landslide inventory maps that are more accurate and comprehensive than any in the past,” said James Roddey with the Oregon Department of Geology and Mineral Industries.


This portion of the Oregon City landslide inventory map
shows several different types of landslides, including
earth slides, rock slides and debris flows.

The latest two maps show historical landslides in the West Bull Mountain area of Washington County and the northwest portion of Oregon City in Clackamas County.

“The benefits are obvious,” said State Geologist Vicki McConnell. “If we’re able to tell communities where landslides have occurred in the past, they can work to lessen or eliminate landslide hazards in the future.”

“Landslide inventory maps are really the first step in an overall strategy to mitigate the effects of landslides where people live,” added Geologist Bill Burns, co-author of the new maps and the accompanying technical report. “Once we identify existing landslides, we can then create susceptibility maps that show the most likely places for different types of landslides to occur in the future.”

Burns said first priorities include making new maps for Clatsop, Marion, Clackamas, Washington and Multnomah counties. The lidar mapping program has already identified up to 200 times the number of landslides that geologists were able to locate with traditional mapping methods in the past.

Landslides are one of the most costly natural hazards in Oregon each year, often exceeding $100 million in damage costs statewide.

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