31 July 2019

The best landslide videos of 2019

Posted by Dave Petley

2019 landslide videos

A still from a video on Youtube showing a tractor being hit by a boulder. No casualties were reported.

The best landslide videos of 2019

The (Northern Hemisphere) summer of 2019 is proving to be exceptionally active from a landslide perspective, with multiple events worldwide.  Indeed, to date I have recorded 96 fatal landslide events in July alone, smashing the previous record of 88.  This seems to reflect a large number of intense rainfall events, including an active summer monsoon in both South and East Asia.  The upshot is that a number of good landslide videos are emerging.  Rather than posting them iteratively, I thought it would be good to set up a post to collate them. I will endeavour to keep this updated as new videos emerge.

Whilst the focus will be on landslides during 2019, I will also post interesting videos from previous events too, where I have not featured them previously.  The first on the list is one of these.  Please use the comments to highlight any video that should be included.

1. An intriguing video of a valley-blocking landslide from Hunza, Pakistan (in 2018)

Thanks to Matt Moore for highlighting this one.  I have never seen a slide quite like this – it is a beautiful illustration of the ways in which slope controls movement rate, and multiple pulses of activity can combine to create a complex deposit:


2. The debris flows at the Tour de France

It’s not often the case that landslides stop a major sporting event.  The extreme rainfall in the French mountains last week triggered debris flows, which were well-captured by the huge numbers of spectators along the route:-


3. Extreme erosion of fill in Canada

Thanks to Peter Weisinger for highlighting this one.  The journalist Tareq Hadhad in Canada tweeted a beautiful video of rapid erosion, and bank collapse, of fill in Antigonish, Canada.


Frustratingly, but oh so predictably, the tweet drew the ire of the ridiculous climate change conspiracy community.  Sigh!

4. Genuinely terrifying “shooting stones” in northern India

If you ever want a reminder of why you should never risk getting in the way of a rockfall, this is it:


5. Boulder vs tractor in Sikkim

It wasn’t a fair fight. Fortunately no-one was hurt, but this was probably economically ruinous for the owner of the vehicle:-


6. A landslide near Champawat in India

This landslide reportedly occurred on 31st July in Champawat in Uttarakhand, India.  The slide is almost majestic in progress:-


7. Six amazing landslide videos from Bhutan

This is a remarkable collection of landslide videos from Bhutan.  The fifth one is particularly interesting:-


8. Cut slope failures in residual soil in Solan, India

Unfortunately, it is hard to argue that this is anything other than poor design:-


9. A very near miss for a group of Kayakers on Lake Superior

This bluff collapse occurred at Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore on Lake Superior on 13th August 2019.  It was a near miss for the kayakers.  Remarkably, this collapse was captured from a drone and from the boats:


There is also a decent video that captures the drone footage in more detail:-

Note the flyrock!