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A landslide is a rapid and often catastrophic movement of rock, soil, and debris down a slope or hillside, triggered by factors like heavy rainfall, seismic activity, or human disturbances, posing significant dangers to people and property in its path.

What is a landslide?

Landslides involve the movement of large amounts of earth, rock, sand or mud, or any combination of these. Landslides can be sudden and fast moving, moving tonnes of debris. They can travel distances spanning only a few centimetres, to many kilometres.

Landslides can be caused by a major event such as earthquake, butin Launceston landslides could be caused when heavy rain saturates soil on a hillside past the point where vegetation can support the soil’s weight against the force of gravity. The top saturated layer of soil then slips down the hill, taking whatever is on the land with it.

Understand your risk

It is important to understand the likelihood and potential causes of a landslide on your property. Check the TasALERT website prior to any land purchase or construction to find out if there has been any past landslide activity or any known landslide risk assessments undertaken.

In addition parents and guardians also need to be aware that unfortunately one of the most frequent victims of ‘smaller landslides’ are children. Fatal accidents have been caused by children digging under a rock to make a cubby house, causing the rock to topple onto them; digging into sand, which collapsed and buried them; or sitting on a rock ledge, which broke off because it could not support their weight. Take the time to explain the dangers to young children and supervise accordingly to ensure they are undertaking any of the activities in a safe, no risk environment.

To assess the risk and potential severity of landslide in your area, visit the TasALERT website and enter your home or business address.