Wildfire-induced mass movement susceptibility of the coastal region of northern California.
The objective of this study is to identify areas susceptible to landslides caused by wildfire damage. Wildfires and mass movement are linked by a number of factors. Wildfires not only clear areas of trees and other vegetation, but the roots can be decomposed by the lack of certain nutrients that are practical for vegetation growth that were burned away. The soil also losses it strength and exposes readily erodible materials. The potential for erosion of the areas increases with these factors impaired. Data and other studies have shown that the physical and chemical changes to an area that has experienced a wildfire is at a higher risk for landslides even with average rainfall. The risk is greater in a watershed where large amount of precipitation drained into multiple outlets. The precipitation can greatly agitate the damaged land that is now looser and easier to saturate, causing it to flow. The last five summers California has experienced record-low rainfall and record-high temperature, with longer and more frequent wildfire, making it more susceptible to landslides. The goal of this project is to assess such landslide risk in Trinity Watershed in California because of its recent wildfires and its average to above average rainfall. The significance for this work is to have a better risk assessment to predict the occurrences and damages of this particular natural disaster.
Primary Advisor's Department
Stander Symposium poster
"Wildfire-induced mass movement susceptibility of the coastal region of northern California." (2018). Stander Symposium Posters. 1280.