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Earth Surface Dynamics An interactive open-access journal of the European Geosciences Union
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© Author(s) 2020. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.
© Author(s) 2020. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

  28 Sep 2020

28 Sep 2020

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This preprint is currently under review for the journal ESurf.

Inferring potential landslide damming using slope stability, geomorphic constraints and run-out analysis; case study from the NW Himalaya

Vipin Kumar1, Imlirenla Jamir2, Vikram Gupta3, and Rajinder K. Bhasin4 Vipin Kumar et al.
  • 1Georisks and Environment, Department of Geology, University of Liege, Liege, Belgium
  • 2Public Works Department (PWD), Nagaland, India
  • 3Wadia Institute of Himalayan Geology, Dehradun, India
  • 4Norwegian Geotechnical Institute, Oslo, Norway

Abstract. Prediction of potential landslide damming has been a difficult process owing to uncertainties related to landslide volume, resultant dam volume, entrainment, valley configuration, river discharge, material composition, friction, and turbulence associated with the material. In this study instability pattern of landslides, parametric uncertainty, geomorphic indices, post-failure run-out predictions, and spatio-temporal pattern of rainfall and earthquake is explored using Satluj valley, North-West (NW) Himalaya as a case study area to predict the potential landslide damming sites. The study area witnessed landslide damming in the past and incurred $ ~ 30 M loss and 350 lives in the last four decades due to such processes. Forty-four active landslides in the study area that cover a total ~ 4.81 ± 0.05 × 106 m2 area and ~ 34.1 ± 9.2 × 106 m3 volume are evaluated in the study to identify those that may result in potential landslide damming. Out of forty-four, five landslides covering the volume of ~ 26.3 ± 6.7 × 106 m3 are observed to form potential landslide dams. Spatio-temporal varying patterns of rainfall in recent years enhance the possibility of landslide triggering and hence potential damming. These landslides also resulted in 24.8 ± 2.7 m to 39.8 ± 4.0 m high material flow in run-out predictions.

Vipin Kumar et al.

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Vipin Kumar et al.

Data sets

Dataset used to infer regional slope stability, NW Himalaya Kumar, V., Jamir, I., Gupta, V., and Bhasin, R. K.

Vipin Kumar et al.


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Publications Copernicus
Short summary
Despite a history of landslide damming and flash floods in the NW Himalaya, few studies have been performed. This study provides an insight into potential landslide damming sites in the Satluj valley, NW Himalaya using field observations, laboratory analysis, empirical data based geomorphic proxies, and numerical simulation. Five landslides comprising a total landslide volume of 26.3 ± 6.7 M m3 are found to have the potential to block the river.
Despite a history of landslide damming and flash floods in the NW Himalaya, few studies have...