The 1997 Thredbo disaster is a constant reminder that landslides happen in Australia and can lead to many deaths. Why do they occur in the first place?
Common Causes of Landslides
A landslide is a geological activity involving the gravity pulling down weakened soil, rocks, fillings, and other objects situated near or above a slope. Landslides can move gradually or swiftly with destructive consequences. If you want to avert landslides on your property, you can do a few things. You have to remember that if a mudslide endangers your house, you should relocate as soon as possible.
Landslides can occur for a variety of reasons. A landslide can happen when dirt, earth or rock can no longer support itself. The ground gives way to gravity because of natural phenomena such as tremors, volcanic eruptions, or rain. One of the most common causes is earth movements, which can make the surface underneath the soil unstable. These movements can happen over a long period (even centuries). In some situations, they are sudden and significant such as in a massive earthquake. Heavy rain, meanwhile, is the leading cause of landslide in Queensland, according to its government. It can saturate the soil, running down the slope when nothing holds it back.
Landslides can be slow. There might be a few pieces of rocks running on the hillside at certain times. They can also be fast, sudden, and extremely dangerous, such as what happened in Thredbo.
How to Prevent Landslides
One of the effective strategies to reduce or prevent the occurrence of landslides is to address the root causes.
One of the quickest and simplest methods to block a landslide on an incline is to vegetate it. This mudslide prevention method works well on hills that are not too sheer. You can do this by yourself; plant a groundcover or ask a professional to vegetate the incline.
The slope and the soil need an assessment to determine the level of risk of a landslide. If the problem is instability, an option is to use steel ground anchors. They can help improve the resistance of the ground and steady the slope. They are also essential during excavations, which can also trigger landslides. Companies such as Meever Konnection can supply these types of equipment depending on the actual need or purpose.
The government also needs to identify the most dangerous soft spots. These places might no longer be habitable or passable.
Lastly, Australia has to provide more concrete actions to address soil erosion. Some of the steps include regulating tilling and over-grazing, improving drainage, and enhancing irrigation systems.
In the end, Australia doesn’t have the best soil in the world. After all, it can become weak and unstable, increasing the risk of landslides. These solutions can help the country avoid another Thredbo tragedy. If you want to avoid experiencing the terrible consequences of mudslides, you should always be aware of your surroundings, especially if you live in a mountainous area or region. Also, you should pay attention to local weather forecasts since rainfall can trigger landslides.