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Landslides and Protection Methods


Causes of Landslides

Landslides are a major natural disaster all over the world. In India landslides are common in the hilly regions of the south and in the Himalayan regions of the north. These landslides cause a lot of damage to life and property.

Landslides occur due to heavy rainfall, steep slopes, seismic activity and poor drainage.

Landslides are also caused due to deforestation and soil erosions. Unrestricted excavation, mining and quarrying also cause landslides.

The site most suited to build houses in landslide prone areas are where the land has not moved in the past. Flat surfaces away from sudden slopes and areas at the top or along the ridges are also suited for building houses.

Houses that are most affected by landslides are the ones that are constructed in the existing landslide areas. House that are built on the steep mountain slopes, near the valley or on the foot hills of the mountains are also most affected during a landslide.

Warning signs before a landslide

  • Landslides usually occur in the same place again and again
  • Doors and windows jam for the first time
  • New cracks appear on the walls and floors
  • Gaps form between the pavement and the building outside the house
  • Fences and compound walls tend to tilt
  • Underground water and electricity lines break
  • When these warning signs occur people have to take precautions.

    To prevent damage to life and property sound construction techniques have to be followed. Seasonal inspection and regular maintenance of the drainage system by the authorities is essential.

    A Safe Drainage System can prevent Landslides to a Large Extent.
    Surface drainage system should be kept away from steep slopes, loose soil and non-vegetated land.

    Water that drains from the roof and other areas like the portico should not be allowed to flow down the slopes. This water should be drained through the drain pipes.

    Drainage System on the Slopes


    Trees and other vegetation prevent landslides to a large extent


    Thick Vegetation prevents Landslides


    Straw, woodchips or bark applied to a depth of one inch is effective in holding the soil from sliding.

    Barriers can be erected to avoid minor landslides.


    Wall to Stop Landslides in Hubei

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