13 February 2013

The Hatfield Stainforth colliery landslide – an update suggesting that it has been moving since yesterday

Posted by Dave Petley

Two new images have become available on Twitter in the last few hours of the Hatfield Stainforth landslide near to Doncaster in NE England.  This is a fascinating landslide that is causing a huge amount of damage to the railway lines.  First, there is this image taken from further along the line:


And second a close up view of the toe bulge shown above:


If you compare the above with the images of the track taken yesterday you will see that the toe bulge has developed very considerably.  Thus, the landslide has clearly moved much further over the last 24 hours.  Hopefully a better set of images of the whole landslide will appear in the next few hours, but this continue to suggest to me that this is a rotational slip caused by a bearing capacity failure in the underlying ground, but I must stress that this no more than speculation at this point.

Network Rail are saying that the repairs will take eight weeks after the colliery finish their work.  However, the colliery element of this is going to be far from trivial, so I’d imagine that the repairs may take a considerable amount of time.  The ground deformation along the track probably cannot be removed until landslide behind is stabilised, and this will probably require that material is removed from the top of the landslide.