Saturday 7 October 2017

Landslide kills four in West Java.

Four members of a family have died and another three have been injured after a landslide hit a house in the village of Kalijati in Sidamulih District, West Java, early in the morning of Saturday 7 October 2017. The incident happened amid heavy rain overnight, that brought flooding to parts of the area. 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 7 October 2017 Kalijati landslide. Google Maps.

Landslides are a common problem in Java, particularly in the rainy season, which lasts from October till April, and can result in an annual rainfall in excess of 4000 mm in parts of West Java. This problem has been made worse as expanding populations has led to people farming higher on hillslopes, in an area where soils tend to be volcanic in action and poorly consolidated (i.e. lack much cohesion), making them more prone to landslides.

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