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Landslides caused by earthquakes

David K. Keefer
Landslides caused by earthquakes
Geological Society of America Bulletin (April 1984) 95 (4): 406-421


Data from 40 historical world-wide earthquakes were studies to determine the characteristics, geologic environments, and hazards of landslides caused by seismic events. This sample was supplemented with intensity data from several hundred United States earthquakes to study relations between landslide distribution and seismic parameters. Fourteen types of landslides were identified in the earthquakes studied. The most abundant of these were rock falls, disrupted soil slides, and rock slides. The greatest losses of human life were due to rock avalanches, rapid soil flows, and rock falls. Correlations between magnitude (M) and landslide distribution show that the maximum area likely to be affected by landslides in a seismic event increases from approximately 0 at M congruent to 4.0 to 500,000 km (super 2) at M = 9.2. Threshold magnitudes, minimum shaking intensities, and relations between M and distance from epicenter or fault rupture were used to define relative levels of shaking that trigger landslides in susceptible materials. Each type of earthquake-induced landslide occurs in a particular suite of geologic environments. These range from overhanging slopes of well-indurated rock to slopes of less than 1 degrees underlain by soft, unconsolidated sediments.--Modified journal abstract.

ISSN: 0016-7606
EISSN: 1943-2674
Serial Title: Geological Society of America Bulletin
Serial Volume: 95
Serial Issue: 4
Title: Landslides caused by earthquakes
Author(s): Keefer, David K.
Affiliation: U. S. Geol. Surv., Menlo Park, CA, United States
Pages: 406-421
Published: 198404
Text Language: English
Publisher: Geological Society of America (GSA), Boulder, CO, United States
References: 48
Accession Number: 1984-027801
Categories: Engineering geology
Document Type: Serial
Bibliographic Level: Analytic
Illustration Description: illus. incl. 7 tables
Country of Publication: United States
Secondary Affiliation: GeoRef, Copyright 2019, American Geosciences Institute.
Update Code: 1984
Program Name: USGSOPNon-USGS publications with USGS authors
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