Heavy rains can turn Arizona terrain unstable and cause occasional land and mudslides. Debris flows be incredibly destructive, but you can take precautions ahead of time.
Before a landslide or mudslide, there are precautions that you can take to improve your safety:
· Do not build near steep slopes, mountain edges, drainage ways or natural erosion valleys.
· Get a ground assessment of your property.
There are often warning signs before a landslide. Be mindful of visible and unseen changes, including:
· Changes occur in your landscape.
· Outside walls, walks or stairs begin pulling away from the building.
· Slowly widening cracks in the ground or on paved areas.
· Underground utility lines break.
· Bulging ground appears at the base of a slope.
· Water breaks through the ground surface in new locations.
· Fences, retaining walls, utility poles or trees tilt or move.
· Faint rumbling sounds that are noticed and increase in volume.
· Collapsed pavement, mud, fallen rocks, etc. on roadside embankments.
After the slide has passed, there are several safety guidelines to keep in mind:
· Without entering the area, check for injured and trapped persons near the slide.
· Beware of unseen damage.
· Replant damaged ground as soon as possible.
· Do not enter the area until you have been told to do so by officials.
For additional information on preparing for a landslide, mudslide or debris flow, visit:
· Just in Case Arizona
· Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
· U.S. Geological Survey