The U.S. Geological Survey issued a warning this week that severe mudslides are likely this winter in Southern California foothill communities that have recently been devastated by brush fires. The Los Angeles Times reported that scientists have identified Pacoima Canyon, Big Tujunga Canyon, the Arroyo Seco, the West Fork of the San Gabriel River and Devils Canyon as being at high risk with an 80% chance of flows.
In some conditions, mudflows could contain up to 100,000 cubic yards of dirt and debris. That’s enough material to cover a football field to a depth of 60 feet.
The threat of mudslides is made even greater by the potential for earthquakes in the area. That possibility has been made apparent recently by mudslides triggered by earthquakes in Indonesia, which leveled an entire valley full of small villages.
The Red Cross has provided some helpful tips for driving in areas with the potential for mudslides:
If any drivers in your fleet are traveling in vulnerable areas, make sure they take this advice to heart and be safe!
Photo courtesy of crawfish head under the Creative Commons License.