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El Niño lets landslide scientists get back to their research

Published Jan 26

Photo: mercurynews

The El Niño rains pounding the Bay Area are delivering both a threat and an opportunity to some of the region’s most precarious hillsides: After 4 dry winters, scientists are finally getting a chance to gather info that may improve their ability to predict landslides — a science that has been notoriously imprecise.

Jan and Feb are traditionally landslide season in the Bay Area, when rains are most likely to drench not stable soils on deep slopes. And when the water pressure gets high enough, landslides can let loose, causing destruction and often death.

For that, you need to know what rainfall conditions — how much rain and how quickly it falls — lead to mudslides.

Article length: About 1060 words.
Tags: Boulder Creek
Read more at Mercurynews


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