Here is my information report about landslides:
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Landslides- How they can destroy us
Heavy rain is pounding down as the crashing sound of a disaster fills the air. Death has its scent all over this, as person after person get trapped, and killed under the mass of rocks and dirt. A landslide is one of the natural disasters that can affect a person’s whole life, and can change it in a minute. A landslide is the movement when a mass of rock, debris or earth on a slope can no longer holds and gives way to gravity. There are different types of landslides depending on the slope angle, climate, weathering, stabilisation, water content and a few more (a landslide can either fall, topple, flow, slide, spread). Landslides occur because of its terrifying triggers (earthquakes, volcanic eruptions, explosion, less deadly = soils that are filled with water, weak rock, the land arrangement, erosion, former of old landslide, vibrations of machines, vibration of traffic, deforestation, cultivation and construction). If a landslide happens underwater (submarine landslides) it can create a flood or a killer tsunami (since an earthquake triggers a landslide, the landslide would push the tsunami along faster and stronger). Lastly, landslides are prone around mountains and coastal areas. In the U.S, landslides occur in all 50 states. There are also other countries that experience this disaster, for example Alaska and Hawaii. Also, in Australia our prone areas are:
Cited by http://www.ga.gov.au/
Coastal cliffs, the Great Dividing Range (along the east coast- submarine landslides), the Strzelecki and Otway Ranges (it is in southern Victoria), Mt Lofty Ranges (close to Adelaide, South Australia- volcanic eruptions), Mt Wellington (volcano eruptions), Tamar Valley, north-west coast of Tasmania, New South Wales and Victorian Alpine regions, and lastly south east of Queensland.
What humans do after a landslide?
25 to 50 humans annually die from a landslide, however the main complications that affect humans happen after the landslide.
The first thing a person will do after a landslide has occurred, is find the nearest safe shelter. Meanwhile, the population of the prone country, would listen to the radio or television announcement for updates on emergency information. Due to this fact, people will watch for signs of flooding. This is because flooding happens regularly after a landslide has taken place (if it was a submarine landslide, watch out for a tsunami). Then will also be the time to check for injured or trapped people. When directing the rescuers there to help, all humans must stay away from the area of the landslide. While all of this is taking place, the public (if they see any damaged railways, roads or utilities) will report this to authorities straight away. Then a group of people will check the land around them and assess where is safe. Lastly, the communities will replant the damaged ground so it won’t trigger any flash floods or additional landslides.
Humans after a landslide will receive goods from countries that are allies. They would receive canned food (it is canned because then it will not expire quickly), plastic water bottles (easy to transport), shelter (tents), clothes from charities and most importantly money (e.g. $1 000 000 American Red Cross gave to the 7.8 magnitude Nepal earthquake).
People in this situation do get a lot of donations, for example the Nepal Earthquake. 9 countries all sent at least 1 team of rescuers, food, medical aid, water, shelter and lastly all 9 countries (India, China, U.S.A, Canada, Israel, France, Australia, Norway and Switzerland) sent money.
Humans who have experienced a landslide, this is what happens when the volunteer groups come to help them:
Lifesaving aid will be the first action done when they get there. After a few hours of the disaster, volunteers will then be checking the level of severity and need. Within 24-72 hours, the team/s there will provide emergency reliefs and they will be making assessments. At 72 hours, supplies will be loaded, transported and handed out. By the first week, emergency aid and relief to residents affected will be provided. After a month, citizens are stabilised (temporary shelter, water, sanitation and hygiene, child protection activities, healthcare etc.).
There are a lot of organisations and volunteer websites that help these people, and this activity a lot of people happen to experience after being in a landslide (or any natural disaster). Humans volunteer to go with groups of people to help out a country in need. Charities also cooperate in helping out, for they ask and receive donations.
Once all of this has taken place, the last action humans do after a landslide has occurred is to wait. They wait to found out whether it is safe to live where their home was anymore. Humans have an expectation to listen and follow instructions given to help them, as they have the right to be affected physically or mentally after.
How humans are affected:
Humankind can be affected in 2 different ways, physically and/or mentally. Physically, landslides can block roads, damage/destroy homes, locally disrupts sewers and power lines (very dangerous). They can even damage oil (big problem since it is really hard to find and collect oil) and gas production facilities. Also, transportation is delayed as well, and this can cause a lot of problems. For example, in 1919, a rockslide near Loggers Creek (close to Sea to the Sky Highway) delayed 12 days for travel and cost $1 million for prevention structure. A landslide is like dominoes, once it is triggered, it will keep on falling in a domino effect. It is also like an earthquake, though it is less common around the world.
Landslides also impact humans by making them pay more money to repair structures, loss of property, disruption of transportation routes, loss of medical aid and loss of materials. Water was one of the main materials that was damaged and the availability, quantity and quality was affected. And even after the landslide has happened, things are still costly like engineering projects that are designed to make the land safer. Lastly, if some people wanted to stabilise their houses after a landslide has hit, it would cost them usually hundreds of thousands of dollars for 2-3 houses.
The land around mankind can get affected very easily, but so can the environment. When a landslide occurs, there is a lot of economic loss. This affects humans for then they lose oxygen, which they need to breathe. And people need to breath to survive, so that is why a lot of plants get planted after a natural disaster has occurred (especially a landslide).
Land and the environment can get damaged very easily, but so can people. Landslides can hurt us physically, and also mentally. There are people outside of the country who are affected so they donate or volunteer. Also, countries can get affected and the government will help out by paying with taxes. So, the government and everyday people can get affected as well. As for people who are in the country hit, they can end up having trauma. If someone is in a natural disaster, they can see a lot of upsetting and traumatising events (seeing someone getting trapped or killed, seeing the effect of the landslide in the moment, thinking that there is no hope etc.). Some people even see a specialist after to get over their trauma. A landslide, or any natural disaster can leave people scarred.
Some people after a landslide are actually affected by scars. It is almost certain that if a person have experience being in a landslide (and has survived) they will come end up with an injury/s. People also die when experiencing a landslide, and the end result can be devastating. This happens because most killing landslides happen on highways, when people are trapped in their car. These types of landslide normally end up being a landslide where debris flows. They are extremely dangerous to animals, humans and the world. These killer landslides are so destructive, that most of them end up leaving long term damages. The only difference it has to other landslides is the debris. It might be a bit hard to picture, so here is a diagram showing you what the debris landslide looks like (the colour equals the rubbish).
This is why people need to prevent landslides.
What do humans do to prevent landslides?
The first thing that humans have done to try and slow down the effect of landslides is the Bureau of Transportation. The first action is to create stormwater management services so they can maintain the water, mud and debris that is pushed out by landslides and onto the streets. The second action is the safe transportation system for people after a landslide. Experts are focusing on detection systems so they can give warnings to residents about potential landslides. This can save lives and prevent loss of items, which will help the country a lot. Countries like the U.S.A have decided to look at the after affects. The United States Geological Survey (USGS) and the National Oceanic and Atmosphere Administrations (NOAA) have established a flash flood warning system to 8 prone countries within southern California. This system utilizes National Weather Services (NWS) and their Flash Flood Monitoring Production (FFMP) system. It recognises when flash floods and debris flows are likely to occur.
Another project is happening in the future, and it’s the Inventory Pilot Project. It designed to provide framework and tools to analyse landslide data into a listed digital format from individual states. Also, it will be able to scan reports and surveys so scientist can investigate. A website will also be created, and it will be about clearly mapped out maps and data collections (their making this so they can promote more maps and data collections on landslides). This project and the website is going to be a long term goal.
USUG Landslide Hazards Program is a team of researchers to find out landslide prone areas, how frequent they are and create landslide hazard maps. To do this, they have to monitor to area. They monitor these things: rainfall, channel stage (sensing device that measures the flow height), ground water pressure, soil temperature, soil water content, ground vibrations, and battery voltage and station temperatures. Once scientists gather this information, they try to predict when the next landslide will be. They’re also trying to learn more about the triggers, that’s why monitoring can go from 15 to 24 hours straight. Here is a picture of what one of the monitoring sites look like:
Sited from http://landslides.usgs.gov/
Here is a website that has some professional maps about the different data they collected at monitoring in millicoma meaner: http://landslides.usgs.gov/monitoring/millicoma_meander/rtdmonitoring.php#channel\
There are everyday things humans can do to prevent landslides. They can check their draining system and direct the water away from them and their neighbours’ property, they can clean their gutters and check 1 a week during autumn and winter (these seasons because 1 wind or rain storm can clog a well-functioning drain), don’t litter and plug the cities drain (e.g. leaves cause flooding so do not plug drains with leaves) and plant trees and plants to reduce erosion on steep hills (so then it will be stable).
One more thing a person can do to help is to never discharge water over the side of an unstable, steep hill (this is because the water will put pressure on the soil, then the rocks will slide, causing a result of a landslide). If they do this, there will be a big, good difference to the frequency of landslides. And if a person alter the slope, that will can reduce the risk and damage of the landslide. To do this, the person would reduce the upper part (the source area) and put it near the base. They would need to do this with professional help or else they could trigger a landslide by digging.
Another way to raise awareness is to make a video, and one website did. It is called Riding the Storm- Landslide Danger in the San Francisco Bay area- 1982 rainstorm. Here is a link to the video: http://pubs.usgs.gov/gip/2007/48/gip48_trailer.mp4
Comparing System to another (systems analysis below):
Landslides and earthquakes are quite similar, since landslides and earthquakes both cause destruction and damage (like any natural disaster). They affect people’s’ lives forever, and they both destroy parts of land (and with a tsunami after). There are different things about each other as well, for example earthquakes are measured in magnitude and landslides can create flash floods. These 2 systems are very alike, but they have minor differences.
Change 1 step:
If there is a lot of plant roots in the slope, then you will need a lot of the other factors to create a landslide. Since the plants roots hold together the slope, if there was a lot of them it would be very hard to make the slope unstable. There would have to be other factors to effectively make a difference, and even then there wouldn’t be as big as an effect there would be without plants. But there are also plants that don’t help or their roots don’t make a difference. This would help a landslide, and these plants would help the landslide in the end. But if the other plants were planted, it would prevent the landslide for a bit longer.
Conclusion (system analysis):
People can affect landslides since they are a trigger (vibrations from traffic, vibrations from building sites etc.) Humans can start a landslide in everyday life, all that happens is the slope becomes more unstable, therefore starting the process. Humans can also affect it by planting plants that don’t help and pouring down water on the slope to gain weight. These are negative results, but something communities can do is plant plants that help. These plants have roots that stick the slope together, therefore making the slope more stable.
Landslides are not known for being the most destructive natural disaster, though people do underestimate how much a landslide can/does affect us. Landslides are a natural disaster, and they can wreck someone’s life forever. People can get affected by trauma, loss of property, death, loss of valuable items and physically injured when facing a landslide. Humans are affected every year, and they get hurt every time. A landslide is a dangerous and destructive natural disaster, and they can affect people more than they think.
Frequency- how many times something has happened
Prone areas- a place that is likely to face a natural disaster
Debris- scattered pieces of rubbish and plastic
Trauma – A depressing experience
Economic – global environment
Sanitation – conditions to public health
Magnitude- the size of an earthquake
Authorities- the power/right to make decisions and give orders on people’s behalf
Population- how many people are in a certain place.
Utilities- Useful electronic objects (phone, gas taps etc.)
Natural disasters- a natural event such as a flood, earthquake, hurricane, volcano etc.
And here’s my assessment sheet:
Here’s my assessment reflection:
Something I’m proud of after the assignment is how much detail I put into it. I tried really hard to get a lot of things on the assessment criteria, and tried to make it one of the best ones I have ever done. And I believe that I did a really good job and pushed myself to get this result. I am also really proud of the way I handled my organisation in this project. I got the project done in time and I accomplished it well, even though there were things going on in my life.
Something I could have improved on is working on my tense. I haven’t been the best at using the right tense in my work, and I believe it needs to be a goal of mine. Also I could have used more comparative adjectives in my piece, and that will also be a goal for me. Lastly, I could have worked on using more simple sentences and to re-reading my work (maybe more than 3 times) for misspelt words.