Friday 12 July 2013

Six people killed by landslide in Nainital District, Uttarakhand.

Six people, including five members of one family, have been killed by a landslide in the Bheemal area of Nainital District in southeast  Uttarakhand Province, India. The incident happened late on Thursday 11 July, following days of heavy rains. Uttarakhand and other areas of the Himalayas have been suffering the heaviest Monsoon rains in eighty years, triggering widespread flooding and numerous landslides, with more rains forecast over the coming days. Landslides are a common problem after severe weather events, as excess pore water pressure can overcome cohesion in soil and sediments, allowing them to flow like liquids. Approximately 90% of all landslides are caused by heavy rainfall.

The approximate location of the 11 July 2013 Nainital landslide. Google Maps.

Utterkhand has suffered extensive flooding since the onset of the Monsoon Season in June, with around 800 confirmed deaths and over 4000 people still missing. Thousands of tourists and pilgrims were trapped by flash flooding towards the end of the month and are still being evacuated by the Indian Army using helicopters. Many bridges have been destroyed, whole villages swept away and towns inundated with water.

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