From: NASA / Goddard Space Flight Center
Published January 12, 2018 09:12 AM

NASA Calculated Heavy Rainfall Leading to California Mudslides

Winter rains falling on recently burned ground triggered deadly mudslides in Santa Barbara County, California on January 9. NASA calculated the amount of rain fall between January 8 and 10, 2018 and calculated the potential for landslides.

At NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland, a landslide potential map was generated by the global Landslide Hazard Assessment for Situational Awareness (LHASA) model, a model that combines precipitation data from the Global Precipitation Measurement or GPM mission satellite with a global landslide susceptibility map. LHASA gives a broad overview of landslide hazard in nearly real time, but site-specific information should be obtained prior to emergency operations or building projects.

At least 17 residents of southern California have been killed by the deadly mudslides. A storm moving in from the Pacific Ocean dropped heavy rain over soil that was laid bare by last month's wild fires. Heavy rainfall loosened surface sediments in Santa Barbara County early Tuesday, Jan. 9 caused deadly mudslides. According to the California Department of Transportation parts of US 101, a major highway connecting northern and southern California has been closed because of mud and debris.

Read more at NASA / Goddard Space Flight Center

Image: NASA's IMERG analysis of Jan 8 through 10, 2018 revealed that the heaviest rainfall occurred over the Sacramento Valley where over 8 inches (203 mm) were indicated. A rainfall total of 5 inches (127 mm) was reported in Ventura County.

Credits: NASA / JAXA / Hal Pierce

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