28 September 2011

Helicopter images and other resource for the landslide dams in Japan

Posted by Dave Petley

The Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Travel and Tourism in Japan is continuing to provide an impressive array of information about the valley-blocking landslides, triggered during Typhoon Talas in the southern part of the country.  Understandably, this is in Japanese, but nonetheless it is still a very useful resource.  The front page can be rendered surprisingly intelligible with the use of Google Translate.     The key parts that I have found are:

1. The location of the five sites (as shown above) can be found here.

2. Monitoring data for the five dams can be found at this page.

3. Perhaps most interestingly, almost daily photo updates on the state of the five dams can be found on this page.  The links go to pdf documents that show each of the dams from two different directions on each day that the weather allows a helicopter flight.

4. From the front page there is also a set of astonishingly detailed documents about the mitigation works underway at each of the sites – such as this document outlining drainage efforts at one of the sites.  Again, Google translate renders them readable.

The ways in which the Japanese authorities are using the internet to keep the public informed about the situation at these dams is remarkable.  The contrast to the situation at Attabad last year is notable.