Landslides Studied by Japan Researchers (ArcNews Online)

Mountainous, rocky terrain is characteristic of Japan's landscape. Also characteristic of Japan are frequent downpours and severe earthquakes. In the summer and fall of 2004, this combination created ideal conditions for an October series of landslides in the mid-Niigata region. Specifically, the heavy rainfall on July 13 flooded two major branches of Japan's longest river, the Shinano-gawa, and three months later, on October 23, intense earthquakes rocked another hilly area just south of the area of summer rains, triggering about 4,000 landslides. Using GIS technology to analyze these landslide triggers, so common for mid-Niigata and the rest of Japan, were Hiromitsu Yamagishi from Niigata University, Junko Iwahashi from the Geographical Survey Institute, and Toko Takayama from Asia Air Survey.

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