A landslide is a geological phenomenon which includes a wide range of ground movement, such as rock falls, deep failure of slopes, and shallow debris flows, see flow. Although gravity acting on an over steepened slope is the primary reason for a landslide, there are other contributing factors:
- erosion by rivers, glaciers, or ocean waves create oversteepened slopes
- rock and soil slopes are weakened through saturation by snowmelt or heavy rains
- earthquakes create stresses that make weak slopes fail
- volcanic eruptions produce loose ash deposits, heavy rain, and debris flows.
- vibrations from machinery, traffic, blasting, and even thunder may trigger failure of weak slopes
- excess weight from accumulation of rain or snow, stockpiling of rock or ore, from waste piles, or from man-made structures may stress weak slopes to failure and other structures
Slope material that become saturated with water may develop a debris flow or mud flow. The resulting slurry of rock and mud may pick up trees, houses, and cars, thus blocking bridges
and tributaries causing flooding along its path.
Similarly, ice floes can form in rivers that are clogged with ice, but are generally much slower moving. Nonetheless, they can generate forces strong enough to collapse bridges.
An avalanche is similar in mechanism to landslide and it involves a large
amount of ice, snow and rock falling quickly down the side of a mountain. Usually the ice builds in cornices or forms over a weaker layer of snow, creating the danger of an avalanche.
A pyroclastic flow is caused by a collapsing cloud of ash, poisonous gas and hot rocks from a volcanic explosion that moves rapidly down an erupting volcano.
First-draft text taken from USGS fact sheet, public domain
is also a near-unanimous election for a candidate in a vote
, which has won by an overwhleming majority over to other candidates. Landslides sometimes occur when one candidate is perceived as much superior to the rest, or by imperfect voting methods. See bloc voting
, and the unanimous 2002
re-election of Iraqi
president Saddam Hussein
, criticized by many on the outside as unfair.