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City maps outline landslide risk
The city of Mercer Island has several resources for Island residents to utilize in order to assess their own risk for landslides on their properties.
The City has prepared detailed maps and fact sheets that are available on the city’s website. The maps catalog several factors including the location of springs, recent slide activity, water depth and the angle of slopes.
A recent post on the city’s website states that, “with the recent catastrophe in Oso, fresh in our minds, many landowners are suddenly learning a lot more about landslides, and risk assessment.
Landslides must be taken seriously on Mercer Island where many homes are built on or near many homes are built on or near slopes.”
In a typical year, the Island will sustain between six and fifteen landslides: the resulting damage can cost from a few thousand dollars (for smaller slides) to upwards of several hundred thousand dollars, not to mention personal injury,” the post said.
Landowners and how they treat the land play an important role in landslide safety, the city said.
Understanding and avoiding common contributory causes can effectively reduce your landslide risk.
Residents are urged to consult with a qualified geotechnical engineer to assess their particular situation.
A Mercer Island Landslide Hazard Assessment map can be found at www.mercergov.org/files/LandslideHazard2009.pdf.