FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
December 13, 2010
State DNR asks public to report new landslides
DNR geologists updating a statewide landslide database used by citizens, industry, government and researchers
OLYMPIA – The Washington State Department of Natural Resources (DNR) is asking citizens to report any new landslides they spot that may be a result of the recent multi-day rain event across western Washington. There is a potential that some hillsides and embankments could slip with continued rainfall.
Since Friday, December 12, DNR has received reports of 18 landslides, including:
- Seven that blocked city or county roads
- Seven that blocked highways*
- Three that blocked railroads (*one in Skykomish blocked both a railroad and a highway)
- One that damaged a house in Des Moines
- One that cut a power line, affecting many people in Mason County
DNR’s latest map of reported landslides:
DNR geologists want to know about landslides – big or small -- for the department’s statewide landslide database. The department’s geologists say it is important to get data, including photos and a location, about a landslide before more rain comes and washes away the original evidence.
DNR is seeking landslide information from the public to help add to its statewide database which already has more than 45,000 recorded landslides in it. The department is focused first on landslides that cause public safety concerns. DNR geologists will be out in the field mapping more landslides as areas become accessible again.
The DNR landslide database is already being used in land management and land use decisions, decisions about real estate purchases, timber harvests, and the placement of homes, businesses, power lines, roads and other infrastructure.
DNR also is working with the University of Washington and the National Weather Service to develop a statewide landslide forecasting system.
How to report a landslide
Please report the street address or cross-streets nearest to the landslide. Only take a GPS (global positioning system) reading if you can do so in a safe location, and never go into areas that local officials have closed to public access.
Photos are also helpful if they can be taken from a safe distance. DNR asks that photos include the whole landslide, if possible. It is also helpful if the photo can safely include something to show the scale of the slide, such a person, a vehicle, a house, or even common household objects like shovels or brooms.
E-mail photos and location information to: DNR_GEO_landslide@sharepoint.dis.wa.gov
A form and instructions for reporting landslides are on the DNR website: www.dnr.wa.gov . Look for the link on the home page: “How Do I Report a Landslide?”
The direct link to the form and instructions is: http://www.dnr.wa.gov/ResearchScience/HowTo/GeologyEarthSciences/Pages/report_a_landslide.aspx
DNR: State’s geologists
In addition to managing more than 5.6 million acres of state-owned lands and serving as the state’s wildland fire department, DNR houses the Washington State Geologist. The department regulates surface mining reclamation and provides technical assistance to citizens, industry and government on geologic hazards, forest stewardship, and other issues.
Lands managed by DNR provide numerous public benefits, including outdoor recreation, native fish and wildlife habitat, and clean and abundant water.
Media Contact: Bob Redling, Senior Communications Manager, 360-902-1049, email@example.com
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