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a mudslide in california

Where and Why California Mudslides Happen

Where and Why California Mudslides Happen

Mudslides are a common occurrence throughout much of California in the winter months. Read on to learn where and why these California mudslides happen.

California is a state renowned for its plentiful sunshine and beautiful weather. But, it also has a glaring issue in some regions: mudslides.

The City of Angels is not immune to this disaster.

In a state that already experiences earthquakes and wildfires, adding another disaster into the mix isn’t ideal. But, with the proper information, you’ll be able to understand where and why California mudslides occur in Los Angeles.

Let’s take a look.

So, What Are They?

Mudslides are essentially flowing streams of debris and are considered a type of landslide. They often contain rock, mud, and, as the name suggests, mud.

They also typically contain debris from buildings or homes that have been caught in the mudslide.

Since a mudslide can move so much debris in such little time, they can pose a deadly threat to people who are caught in its path.

Why Do They Happen?

After a large natural disaster (such as the aforementioned earthquakes or wildfires), the ground’s integrity becomes loose and unstable. If areas on high inclines experience heavy rains afterward, a mudslide can occur.

During the case of wildfires, the fire destroys all the vegetation that held the soil together, leaving the region susceptible to a mudslide long after the fire has come and gone.

Since mudslides are naturally occurring and result from catastrophic disasters, they can’t be prevented.

Where Do They Happen?

Steep hills and inclines are the main locations where mudslides occur. Thus, you should be wary of staying in locations at the bottoms of hills or valleys during inclement weather.

This means that LA’s iconic Hollywood Hills neighborhood is a prime location for mudslides during the right conditions.

Those who have homes at the bottom of steep regions should be wary that there is a strong chance they will experience a mudslide during their lifetime.

In California, the rainy season occurs during the winter, making mudslides most likely to occur during the colder months.

If the disaster is particularly bad, it can even wipe out entire neighborhoods. In fact, the infamous 2014 Oso Mudslide in Washington carried approximately 18 million tons of sand and clay, destroying all in its path.

How Can You Protect Yourself?

In short, there isn’t much you can do.

California homes simply aren’t built in a manner that will allow them to be safe havens during a mudslide. If the mudslide doesn’t destroy your home and sweep it away, there’s a strong chance you’ll get trapped inside from all the mud and debris.

Furthermore, you may be prone to experiencing a slip and fall in the affected area after the mudslide occurs.

Thus, the only precaution you can take is to stay alert for any evacuation warnings during bad weather.

Having a plan for what you need to collect and take with you before you leave can prevent you from panicking or staying too long after evacuation orders have been issued.

To recap, you should:

  • Understand what regions are prone to experiencing mudslides
  • Have a supply of food, water, and other necessities to take with you
  • Know the location of any family memorabilia you need to bring
  • Remain calm

These tips will ensure you evacuate quickly and with everything you need.

California Mudslides Are Dangerous

But with the right preparation, you’ll be able to safely relocate your family at the first signs of danger. As long as you remain vigilant, your only loss from California mudslides will be property.

If you’ve experienced an injury due to a mudslide because you weren’t properly informed to evacuate, you may be entitled to compensation.

Contact us to see what we can do for you.



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