A ‘landslide observatory’: Scientists study Washington’s Rattlesnake Ridge

The Seattle Times

The possibility that seismic signals could provide early warning of landslides got a tragic boost last summer, when a towering slope collapsed in Greenland and triggered a 300-foot-high tsunami that killed four people. The closest seismometer was nearly 20 miles away, but it recorded a drumbeat of little earthquakes hours before the slope failed.

“That’s what we would expect from a landslide slipping — very repetitive, tiny, tiny events,” said Western Washington University geologist Jackie Caplan-Auerbach, who spotted the precursory quakes in Greenland and has been poring over the seismic tracings from Rattlesnake Ridge.

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Wednesday, February 14, 2018 - 11:18am