Fellow geo-blogger David Petley of Durham University posted today about the 105th anniversary of the Frank Landslide in Canada. The slide had an estimated volume of 30 million cubic meters and took all of about 100 seconds to travel down the mountain and engulf a portion of a nearby coal mining town. 76 people were killed, and a number of bodies were never recovered because of the massive amount of material. Since 2003, they have installed real-time monitoring equipment to warn if the mountain fails again, which seems likely based on an interesting video (requires Windows Media Player). It shows some of the massive tension cracks at the top of the limestone mountain. (Photo by Natural Resources Canada by way of Dave’s Landslide Blog)
[Updated May 30, 2008] I forgot to publish this post to the front page, whoops! The two links still have excellent information. In particular, Dave’s Landslide Blog has coverage of the many landslide lakes and the efforts to breach some of them. [/Update]
The latest numbers according to AFP, Worldwide News Agency, is 71,000 dead, missing or buried and over 5 million homeless. There were many victims that were buried by landslides and rockfall. In the past few days 200 rescue workers have been buried by mudslides.