Water rushes into the Carey Tunnel (previously the Brooklyn Battery Tunnel)
Geologic Hazards

GEER Report for Hurricane Sandy

The Geotechnical Extreme Events Reconnaissance or GEER group funded by the NSF puts experts on the ground in the aftermath of natural disasters to collect geotechnical data that can used in case studies and ultimately […]



No Picture
Geologic Hazards

New Orleans Repeats Deadly Levee Blunders

That is the title of a Seattle Post-Intelligencer article on post-Katrina levee issues in New Orleans (by way of ASCE Smart Brief). I think the article is somewhat sensationalized, but they do cite some interesting parallels between the levee reconstruction efforts made after Katrina and the levee construction/reconstruction that occurred after Hurricane Betsy in 1965.

The article also discusses a recent US Army audit with some disturbing although not unexpected findings:

An initial September 2010 target to complete the $14.8 billion in post-Katrina work has slipped to mid-2011. Then last September, an Army audit found 84 percent of work behind schedule because of engineering complexities, environmental provisos and real estate transactions. The report added that costs would likely soar.

A more recent analysis shows the start of 84 of 156 projects was delayed – 15 of them by six months or more. Meanwhile, a critical analysis of what it would take to build even stronger protection – 500-year-type levees – was supposed to be done last December but remains unfinished.

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Geologic Hazards

Flooding in Supai Canyon

There have been a number of reports on the flooding in Supai Canyon, near the Grand Canyon this past weekend. I think the best description of the event and the subsequent rescues was from the AZ211 website which I found by way of the Arizona Geology Blog (quoted after the break). The flood was impressive. I hope the areas near Havassu Falls and Mooney Falls were not too heavily damaged. I was fortunate enough to hike and camp that location back in College, the travertine is just amazing and makes the water so green. Mooney Falls and the area downstream are particularly breathtaking. [Photo credit: National Parks Service]

Many reports I’ve seen attribute the flood the result of the failure of the Redlands Dam. But again, the Arizona Geology Blog quotes the National Park Service as saying that the dam is a minor one meant to create a pond for livestock and wasn’t a significant factor in the flooding. The latest reports I saw was that 11 hikers who were missing were located today (by way of Geology.com)

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