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 Post subject: California Mudslides
PostPosted: Jan Thu 11, 2018 12:06 am 
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Joined: Jan Thu 01, 1970 1:00 am
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Location: Litchfield Minnesota USA
I have read that the coast railroad (which includes UP and Amtrak I believe) is out of service due to torrential rains and historically record mudslides. This, caused by the fires during the past summer so that most of the vegetation is gone. Nothing to hold the soil where it was.
I've seen news photographs of devastated multi-million dollar mansions destroyed along with all other sorts of structures in ruins.
I haven't heard a thing from ARF members who might live in the area, Carpenteria and other towns and cities in the affected area. Looks like the Pacific Coast Highway is out of commission once again too.
Anyone from that area on this forum? If so, how are people holding out? How are YOU holding out?
Mark D.


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 Post subject: Re: California Mudslides
PostPosted: Jan Thu 11, 2018 12:39 am 
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Location: Annapolis, MD
I lived in SoCal almost 70 years... Before retiring and moving east. The fire/mudslide cycle has always been there, but is now worse for many reasons, including--I assume--climate change.

We know many of the affected areas, but nobody specific.

All we have so far in MD is heat and cold....

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 Post subject: Re: California Mudslides
PostPosted: Jan Thu 11, 2018 3:55 am 
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Joined: Apr Mon 09, 2012 2:55 am
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Location: Lakewood,SoCal- 90713
Live about 70 miles south of the worst area hit by mudslides,but the story has been on the local news 24/7.

https://www.nbcnews.com/news/weather/se ... ws-n836411

Quote:
I assume--climate change.


I may have to disagree with that, after watching the hell storm that was burning called the Thomas Fire. The amount of rain that we had in a short time and with no vegetation to hold the soil is certain
disaster.Happens with every fire of any significance in the hilly areas. 17 people dead at last count,
possible there will be more. People were told to move out prior to the storm some of the ones who
stayed didn't make it out, some of the lucky rode it out and were not harmed.

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 Post subject: Re: California Mudslides
PostPosted: Jan Thu 11, 2018 5:50 am 
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Joined: Jan Thu 01, 1970 1:00 am
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Location: Albuquerque, NM 87123
I lived in Santa Barbara for 5 years and Montecito was about a thousand feet from my house; I was at the base of the foothills, and even 30+ years ago they had problems with earth movement, landslides and washouts from rain.

One problem I can relate to you is (without getting political), the city refused to allow most changes and dealing with "natural erosion processes" like fire and floods was not high on their to-do list. I doubt that situation has changed in all these years.


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 Post subject: Re: California Mudslides
PostPosted: Jan Thu 11, 2018 7:56 am 
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Posts: 12915
Location: San Jose, CA USA
Mark D wrote:
Looks like the Pacific Coast Highway is out of commission once again too.


Along much of the California coast, the Pacific Coast Highway (PCH) is California Route 1, which is a less-traveled more obscure road particularly of interest to tourists. But in the area affected by these slides, U.S. Highway 101 is combined with California Route 1, and is in fact one of three major freeways that run north-south in the state, with a huge amount of traffic and commercial importance. The fact that 101 has been closed in several places since the mudslides is a pretty big deal.

It's a real shame to see that quite a few people were killed by these mudslides. Although the fire was huge, in general people had some warning and a chance to escape, so there were very few fatalities. With the mudslides, the whole event can be over in less than a minute. Some of these struck at night, killing people who hardly had a chance to even understand what was happening to them.

I live at the bottom of a fairly steep hillside here in San Jose (not near the current mudslides) and sometimes think that under certain kinds of rain conditions, it would be a good idea to spend the night elsewhere. Slides can hit areas that haven't been hit by fires as well -- it just takes more rain to cause the same problem.

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 Post subject: Re: California Mudslides
PostPosted: Jan Thu 11, 2018 3:01 pm 
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Joined: Jan Mon 28, 2013 9:35 pm
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Location: Santa Rosa, CA
We were right in the middle of the firestorm in Santa Rosa but somehow
our neighborhood survived. Just about everything around us is gone.
Watching what is happeing in SoCal has us very nervous. One of the
creeks that drains many of the hills in the burned area is about 50 yards
away. While things like this may be common in SoCal, not so in
NorCal. If we have a very wet winter like last year, problems are inevitable.

Global warming? Nope. Just bad luck.
Steve

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 Post subject: Re: California Mudslides
PostPosted: Jan Thu 11, 2018 3:24 pm 
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zarco wrote:
Global warming? Nope. Just bad luck.
Bad luck, maybe, but not just bad luck.

I remember as a kid in the 60's being at Marineland (Palos Verdes Peninsula ) and looking toward a nearby hillside. They were busy adding fill to the side of a hill to level it out so they could build houses on it. Even as they were doing it and knowing the mudslide problems the area had after heavy rainstorms we were all talking about the fact that, "That's a very bad idea."

After the fires were being put out recently we were already discussing the problem they were going to have when the rainstorms hit the area.

It appears that in some cases people were actually told to leave and chose not to do so. Yet another bad decision.

Sometimes bad luck is really more a combination of bad decisions.

Curtis Eickerman

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 Post subject: Re: California Mudslides
PostPosted: Jan Thu 11, 2018 4:09 pm 
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Quite a few years ago we were on a guided tour in the LA area. Someone on the tour asked what a "Slider" was and the tour guide explained it. Pointing upward to a home built on the side of a cliff he said that is a Slider. He went on to explain that the house eventually slides down the hill from a Mud Slide. The owner is then reimbursed through flood insurance and or homeowners insurance and then they rebuild the home bigger than it was the last time around. His final comment on the subject was that some are on their third and fourth home due to the exact same thing happening. To him and many of us that seemed strange that they would be allowed to rebuild in that same location. Many places what have similar issues the property is taken over by the state county city etc and turned into a park never to be built again where people would be living. Simple to close the park when conditions warrant. And the original owner relocates to someplace else where they will never have the issue again. Guess that makes too much sense.

John k9uwa

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 Post subject: Re: California Mudslides
PostPosted: Jan Thu 11, 2018 4:22 pm 
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Location: Gretna, Nebraska
Eickerman wrote:
zarco wrote:
Global warming? Nope. Just bad luck.
Bad luck, maybe, but not just bad luck.

I remember as a kid in the 60's being at Marineland (Palos Verdes Peninsula ) and looking toward a nearby hillside. They were busy adding fill to the side of a hill to level it out so they could build houses on it. Even as they were doing it and knowing the mudslide problems the area had after heavy rainstorms we were all talking about the fact that, "That's a very bad idea."

After the fires were being put out recently we were already discussing the problem they were going to have when the rainstorms hit the area.

It appears that in some cases people were actually told to leave and chose not to do so. Yet another bad decision.

Sometimes bad luck is really more a combination of bad decisions.

Curtis Eickerman


Have to agree with Curtis on this one.

Cali's population has grown significantly over the decades. People want a piece of the dream, but with limited space and natural resources for continued growth in scenic areas.

With past and current land development practices in areas unsuitable for habitation, no one should be surprised at the loss of life and property.

Add to that limited natural resources (mainly potable water) to be shared between all those people, and it should be no surprise when we see an unsustainable situation.

I watch the future with interest to see if a tipping point is reached.

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 Post subject: Re: California Mudslides
PostPosted: Jan Thu 11, 2018 6:09 pm 
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Joined: Jan Thu 01, 1970 1:00 am
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Location: The Great Pacific Northwest
I lived in So Cal (on and off) a total of 41 years and yes, the Fires/Rain/Mudslides
cycle has always been an aspect of living there. I recall in the late '70s working
on a house in the Sunland/Tujunga area and the mudslides were unearthing
and bringing down coffins from a hillside Cemetery! Some corpses and skeletons
also were washed down as some coffins broke open. :shock:

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 Post subject: Re: California Mudslides
PostPosted: Jan Fri 12, 2018 4:42 am 
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Joined: Apr Mon 09, 2012 2:55 am
Posts: 2437
Location: Lakewood,SoCal- 90713
Eickerman wrote:
zarco wrote:
Global warming? Nope. Just bad luck.
Bad luck, maybe, but not just bad luck.

I remember as a kid in the 60's being at Marineland (Palos Verdes Peninsula ) and looking toward a nearby hillside. They were busy adding fill to the side of a hill to level it out so they could build houses on it. Even as they were doing it and knowing the mudslide problems the area had after heavy rainstorms we were all talking about the fact that, "That's a very bad idea."

After the fires were being put out recently we were already discussing the problem they were going to have when the rainstorms hit the area.

It appears that in some cases people were actually told to leave and chose not to do so. Yet another bad decision.

Sometimes bad luck is really more a combination of bad decisions.

Curtis Eickerman


Funny you should mention that Curtis,when my kids were little I took them there (Marineland (Palos Verdes Peninsula ). There is so much land movement there none of the main water and gas lines are below ground.
Another fact is the Trump National golf course is in that very area located around an area called
Portuguese Bend. The course only has 15 holes the other 3 are unplayable because of the shifting terrain. I think it is the 17th hole that has almost slid into the ocean.

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 Post subject: Re: California Mudslides
PostPosted: Jan Fri 12, 2018 7:26 am 
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k9uwa wrote:
Quite a few years ago we were on a guided tour in the LA area. Someone on the tour asked what a "Slider" was and the tour guide explained it. Pointing upward to a home built on the side of a cliff he said that is a Slider.

Now that's ridiculous; anyone knows that a slider is a mini cheeseburger;

Image

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 Post subject: Re: California Mudslides
PostPosted: Jan Fri 12, 2018 4:42 pm 
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Thanks, I was wondering why they call those 'Sliders', makes sense, it's a California thing.

Mudslides occur on our coast as well, but they are caused by clear-cut logging. Debris plugs a culvert, water builds up behind the dam, then there is a blow-out. The severity of the blowout depends on the volume of that pond when the plug lets go.

I know a lot of people will say these event have always been, but our population keeps mushrooming, and the severity of weather events are increasing, no denying that.

My condolences to those who lost family members. Some of the stories are just heartbreaking. Nobody should have to go through that.

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 Post subject: Re: California Mudslides
PostPosted: Jan Fri 12, 2018 5:00 pm 
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Joined: Nov Sun 04, 2007 6:01 am
Posts: 3355
Location: Redding, CA
To be technically correct, the damage was a result of mudflows (mostly mud, some debris, governed by subcritical hydraulic properties), not debris flows (mostly rocks, wood, water, and some mud, governed by subcritical hydraulic properties), or slides of any type (governed by gravity and particle physics). Ignore the terms used by the media. They choose to use the most sensational terms for reporting rather than the technically correct terms. It is likely that some erosion related upland landslides have contributed to the mudflows but I have yet to see any images of the source areas.

The potential for similar mudflows after wildfires is high throughout the coastal range south of the SF Bay area and the west half of the coastal range north of the SF Bay area.

Norman

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 Post subject: Re: California Mudslides
PostPosted: Jan Fri 12, 2018 5:55 pm 
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Location: alameda,CA
I might receive hell for saying this but one thing I see common in California is that many of the problem areas are in the hills surrounding major metros. Around here we have the Oakland Hills, which surrounds the city of Oakland and where many of the wealthiest residents reside. In the past there have been disasters up there with fire, earthquakes and mudslides. Its the same setup as down in So-Cal: Its rains a bit in the winter and then the local vegetation which had been dormant for the 6-7 months of no rain suddenly grows like mad. And then the rain stops, all of that dries up and when it gets hot all it takes is a spark and the whole thing goes up in flames. Its just the way it is when you live in an area that is mostly arid and full of flammable trees and vegetation. Add people and their houses and its the perfect setup for potential disaster. 20 years ago there was a fire up there that wound up killing people. Why? They couldn't get down off the hill fast enough. When we looked at houses to buy we did look up there since it is nice. But after seeing all of the narrow, twisty winding roads coupled with the sheer number of people who live up there and the prospect of trying to vacate the area along with 1000's of other panicking people made us decide not to buy there.

So in other words, living in the hills in California does come with some risk. I feel truly sorry for all of those folks down there who've lost their homes. The images looked horrific.


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 Post subject: Re: California Mudslides
PostPosted: Jan Wed 17, 2018 12:52 am 
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Location: Litchfield Minnesota USA
No reason to catch hell about what you said, Bob. From what I've read and seen you're right as rain.
I wonder how long it will take before the state decides to do something about zoning areas off limits for dwellings of any sort. Other states have done the same already, mostly in flood plains. There's always somewhere else where one can build a house, it doesn't have to be in the worst possible place.

Mark D.


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 Post subject: Re: California Mudslides
PostPosted: Jan Wed 17, 2018 2:19 am 
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Mark D wrote:
I wonder how long it will take before the state decides to do something about zoning areas off limits for dwellings of any sort. Other states have done the same already, mostly in flood plains. There's always somewhere else where one can build a house, it doesn't have to be in the worst possible place.

Mark D.

The Portuguese Bend region of the Palos Verdes Peninsula in southern California is one of those areas that is geologically unstable and is unsuitable for building. You could drive through there and see the abandoned dwellings and the results of the instability.

BR,

Terry


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 Post subject: Re: California Mudslides
PostPosted: Jan Wed 17, 2018 3:46 am 
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radioterry wrote:
The Portuguese Bend region of the Palos Verdes Peninsula in southern California is one of those areas that is geologically unstable and is unsuitable for building. You could drive through there and see the abandoned dwellings and the results of the instability.

BR, Terry



So, has the state banned new construction there? Also, I'd like to know if there are still any occupied dwellings there today? Just curious.
Mark D.


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 Post subject: Re: California Mudslides
PostPosted: Jan Wed 17, 2018 4:00 am 
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Location: Redding, CA
Mark D wrote:
I wonder how long it will take before the state decides to do something about zoning areas off limits for dwellings of any sort.

Mark D.


Development in floodplains is under the jurisdiction of the local agency (city, county) under contract with FEMA as a prerequisite for flood insurance in the community. Residential and commercial development is prohibited in the FEMA designated floodways in California as it is elsewhere. However during mudflows the surface elevation of the flow will be much higher than the water surface elevation of the 100-year flood even if the mudflow is the result of a much smaller event.

Norman

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 Post subject: Re: California Mudslides
PostPosted: Jan Wed 17, 2018 4:56 am 
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Mark D wrote:
radioterry wrote:
The Portuguese Bend region of the Palos Verdes Peninsula in southern California is one of those areas that is geologically unstable and is unsuitable for building. You could drive through there and see the abandoned dwellings and the results of the instability.

BR, Terry



So, has the state banned new construction there? Also, I'd like to know if there are still any occupied dwellings there today? Just curious.
Mark D.

While I was still living in southern California 30+ years ago, new construction was banned in that area and the area's existing dwellings were abandoned and condemned. I don't know what the present situation is, but that area of southern California, while beautiful, is extremely geologically unstable.

BR,

Terry


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