Why landslides happen and could happen here - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

Why landslides happen and could happen here

Posted: Updated:
SPOKANE, Wash. -

After dealing with the state's largest wildfire that burned through hundreds of miles of land, Okanogan County is now dealing with something else. A landslide swept through, completely closing roads, and trapping people in their homes.

“With all that vegetation gone, the water just runs off and creates a large pile at the bottom of the hill,” said U.S. Geological Survey Geologist Tom Frost.

Frost says there are many factors that can trigger a landslide: earthquakes, rivers creating unstable ground, or as in the case of Okanogan County, a lot of rain with nothing to catch it.

“The big problem in the recent events has been that there were all the fires, which burned off the vegetation, which helps hold both the moisture and rocks in place,” Frost explained.

Once a landslide has happened, re-building back to the way it was before is not really an option.

“There really is no normal after something like that happens because once a landslide occurs, the ground is fundamentally unstable,” Frost said.

Frost says it is even something that could happen here in the Latah Creek area down by the golf courses.

“The stream has undercut the cliffs reducing the stability, similar to this Oso situation and that can precipitate a landslide coming down at anytime whether or not there is rain,” Frost said.

Once a landslide happens in an area, Frost says it forever changes the landscape. It also means the area is prone to having more landslides happen again in the future.

  • Most Popular StoriesMost Popular StoriesMore>>

  • Spokane almost dead last on Washington's safest cities list

    Spokane almost dead last on Washington's safest cities list

    Tuesday, February 20 2018 1:27 PM EST2018-02-20 18:27:47 GMT

    KHQ.COM - The National Council for Home Safety and Security has released the safest cities in Washington for 2018... and Spokane did not impress. To determine the order of the ranking the Council used data on the number of reported violent crimes and property crimes for every thousand people and also reviewed the most recent FBI Uniform Crime report. Spokane ranked almost dead last coming in at number 79 (there were only 80 cities on the list).

    >>

    KHQ.COM - The National Council for Home Safety and Security has released the safest cities in Washington for 2018... and Spokane did not impress. To determine the order of the ranking the Council used data on the number of reported violent crimes and property crimes for every thousand people and also reviewed the most recent FBI Uniform Crime report. Spokane ranked almost dead last coming in at number 79 (there were only 80 cities on the list).

    >>
  • UPDATE: Kent Police arrest man suspected of trying to rape barista

    UPDATE: Kent Police arrest man suspected of trying to rape barista

    Wednesday, February 21 2018 1:23 PM EST2018-02-21 18:23:24 GMT

    KENT, Wash. - Kent police said they arrested a man Wednesday morning who was seen on surveillance video early Tuesday breaking into a bikini barista stand and abducting the barista at knifepoint before trying to rape her outside. The arrest was made after investigators received multiple tips identifying the suspect. 

    >>

    KENT, Wash. - Kent police said they arrested a man Wednesday morning who was seen on surveillance video early Tuesday breaking into a bikini barista stand and abducting the barista at knifepoint before trying to rape her outside. The arrest was made after investigators received multiple tips identifying the suspect. 

    >>
  • Managers of Spokane Valley motel, 6 others arrested on drug and property crime charges following two-month investigation

    Managers of Spokane Valley motel, 6 others arrested on drug and property crime charges following two-month investigation

    Tuesday, February 20 2018 6:06 PM EST2018-02-20 23:06:06 GMT

    SPOKANE VALLEY, Wash. - A two-month investigation into criminal activity at the Red Top Motel in Spokane Valley resulted in a massive raid and the arrest of 8 people early Tuesday morning. The Red Top Motel has had more than 100 calls for service since the beginning of the year, with many of those calls resulting in the arrest of known criminals who commonly traffic in drugs and stolen property.

    >>

    SPOKANE VALLEY, Wash. - A two-month investigation into criminal activity at the Red Top Motel in Spokane Valley resulted in a massive raid and the arrest of 8 people early Tuesday morning. The Red Top Motel has had more than 100 calls for service since the beginning of the year, with many of those calls resulting in the arrest of known criminals who commonly traffic in drugs and stolen property.

    >>
HD DOPPLER 6i
/
  • Top Stories from KHQHomeMore>>

  • Drought ends: American women beat Canada 3-2 in SO for gold

    Drought ends: American women beat Canada 3-2 in SO for gold

    Thursday, February 22 2018 2:25 AM EST2018-02-22 07:25:56 GMT

    GANGNEUNG, South Korea (AP) - Jocelyne Lamoureux-Davidson scored in the first extra round of the first shootout tiebreaker in Olympic women's hockey history to give the United States the gold medal with a 3-2 victory over Canada.    Maddie Rooney stopped Meghan Agosta on her second try of Thursday's shootout to clinch it.

    >>

    GANGNEUNG, South Korea (AP) - Jocelyne Lamoureux-Davidson scored in the first extra round of the first shootout tiebreaker in Olympic women's hockey history to give the United States the gold medal with a 3-2 victory over Canada.    Maddie Rooney stopped Meghan Agosta on her second try of Thursday's shootout to clinch it.

    >>
  • Spokane gas station's stolen propane tanks appear to be for sale online

    Spokane gas station's stolen propane tanks appear to be for sale online

    Thursday, February 22 2018 2:06 AM EST2018-02-22 07:06:22 GMT

    SPOKANE, Wash. -  Last month thieves hit a gas station in north Spokane and were caught on camera getting away with 12 brand new propane tanks worth more than $500. The business, Divine's on Nevada and Wellesley, reported the theft to police and posted about it online. "We do a lot  with the community as far as working with SNAP and other agencies to fill propane for customers in need who use it to heat their home," said Divine's manager Sonya Bray.

    >>

    SPOKANE, Wash. -  Last month thieves hit a gas station in north Spokane and were caught on camera getting away with 12 brand new propane tanks worth more than $500. The business, Divine's on Nevada and Wellesley, reported the theft to police and posted about it online. "We do a lot  with the community as far as working with SNAP and other agencies to fill propane for customers in need who use it to heat their home," said Divine's manager Sonya Bray.

    >>
  • Mad Minute stories from Wednesday, February 21st

    Mad Minute stories from Wednesday, February 21st

    Wednesday, February 21 2018 6:29 PM EST2018-02-21 23:29:22 GMT

    Here are the extended versions of the KHQ Local News 11 at 11 Mad Minute stories from Wednesday, February 21st.

    >>

    Here are the extended versions of the KHQ Local News 11 at 11 Mad Minute stories from Wednesday, February 21st.

    >>