Where Do Landslides Occur in the U.S.?


Quick Answer

Landslides occur throughout the entire United States, but are more prevalent in certain areas of Hawaii and Alaska and in the Rocky Mountains, Appalachian Mountains and the Pacific Coastal Ranges. Landslides are most likely to happen on oversteepened slopes that fail structurally as a result of snow melting, excessive rainfall, or erosion by glaciers, ocean waves and rivers.

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Full Answer

Earthquakes with a magnitude of 4.0 and higher can cause landslides while volcanic eruptions can create heavy rain, debris flows and ash deposits that can weaken a slope and cause it to collapse. Slopes that have manmade structures built on top of them or that have piles of waste or a stockpile of ore, rock or other material are also at risk of failing. The falling material from slopes usually consists of water, mud and rock. The material is capable of dislodging cars, trees and buildings.

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