The comic book superhero GeoGirl fights to protect the public from geohazard villains such as Dick Clay and Lance Lied! These entertaining geotechnical comic books are developed by San Francisco Bay Area geotechnical engineering firm Murray Engineers Inc. in collaboration with a local artist, Amelia Pendleton. Murray Engineers staff were kind enough to send me Issue 1 as well as the recently release Issue 2! Initially, I assumed they would be PDFs, but what a great surprise to find out that they actually mailed me both issues of a glossy, old-school comic book! The stories are entertaining, and the illustrations are fabulous! My kids even picked them up and read them. This is such a neat way to explain geotechnical engineering to people, particularly kids!
Folks in Oregon are angry about a recent landslide and debris flow that closed Highway 30 and destroyed property in the town of Woodson. (Here is a powerpoint presentation by Bill Burns of the Oregon Department of Geology and Mineral Industries showing how the event happened). Some rather stinging allegations are being made that politicians withdrew a landslide hazard map from general use in 2002 for political reasons. That map or another one had characterized the area effected by the December 2007 debris flow as a "very high" or "extreme" risk of landslides. A very interesting article.