8 October 2009

A late monsoon landslide incident in Nepal

Posted by Dave Petley

Regular readers will know that Nepal is country in which I have a particular interest. The landslides there are dominated by the very strong monsoonal signal seen in the summer months. Usually by late September the monsoon is fading and normal life resumes. Not this year, which has seen a sudden late burst of rainfall in the west of the country. The map below shows the TRMM data for the last three days, with areas of intense rainfall highlighted in red and yellow colours:

It is possible to extract from the TRMM site the actual rainfall data that sits behind this map. So here is the cumulative rainfall for this region over the last week. This should be taken as being indicative only, but it is clear that there has been a substantial amount of rain:

The consequence has been a large number of landslides, several of which have killed people. To date the list that I have collated is as follows:

Date Location Number of fatalities
06/10/2009 Mastamandu VDC 1, Garkhagaon, Dadeldura 12
06/10/2009 Dewrali VDC 3, Tanahu 1
06/10/2009 Silgadhi-14, Pagari in Doti district 1
06/10/2009 Patalkot VDC of Achham 13
06/10/2009 Bindyabasini-1, Accham 1
06/10/2009 Majhigaun-3, Bajhang 2
06/10/2009 Malladehi-7, Baitadi 1
06/10/2009 Siddheswari VDC, Accham 5
07/10/2009 Thapakhana village, Parvat 4
07/10/2009 Marku VDC of Achham 3
08/10/2009 Syadi VDC, Dhangadhi 4
Total 47

This is a pretty grim total. Fortunately, the weather does now seem to be improving.