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Landslide Information Map

This map shows the locations of known landslides and areas susceptible to landslides in a geologic and geomorphic context. The purpose of the map is to provide an overall view of landslide hazards across the state. There are several landslide data layers represented as points, lines, and polygons. Locations come from Kentucky Geological Survey research, published maps, state and local government agencies, the public, and the media, thus making attributes and spatial accuracy highly variable. Most all landslide types, sizes, and states of activity are represented. This map can be used to identify preexisting landslide locations and serve as a basis for landslide hazard assessment and risk reduction. It is not intended for site specific investigations. The absence of landslides in an area does not infer that a landslide does not exist or that the ground is stable. A professional geologist or geotechnical engineer should be consulted for planned construction at identified landslide locations or in identified landslide areas. A professional geologist or geotechnical engineer should also be consulted for control and mitigation efforts of existing slides.

The full extent of the Landslide Information Map shows landslide points, landslide areas, counties, and roads. The “areas susceptible to debris flows” become visible when zoomed in. The light gray areas are a LiDAR hillshade layer (5ft) and are not present in all parts of the state. The LiDAR layer can be adjusted for varying amounts of transparency in the Data Layers list. If LiDAR is not present, the 30ft DEM hillshade draped with topographic maps are visible when zoomed in.

Landslide Map Layer Descriptions
Five layers are contained within the "KGS Landslide Data" layout. Their descriptions are as follows:
KGS landslide inventory data
This map layer contains known landslide locations (points) across Kentucky compiled in a landslide inventory database. The locations come from Kentucky Geological Survey research, state and local government agencies, and the public. Many of the points represent larger landslide features that have not been mapped in detail and may fall within different parts of the slide area (crown, head scarp, middle, or toe). The landslides are active or have historically been active. Slide locations are collected at different times and contain varying amounts of attributes. The inventory does not capture work by private industry or other agencies that document landslides but do not make them available. Many attribute values are “Null” and data is only present if the slide was visited or could be collected another way. Landslide inventory points that fall within a landslide polygon layer represent the centroid of that polygon so it could be catalogued in the inventory database.

The SourceDesc field describes the source of the landslide location. KGS=Kentucky Geological Survey, KY EM = Kentucky Emergency Management, KYTC = Kentucky Transportation Cabinet, DNR-DMRE = Division of Natural Resources-Mine Reclamation & Enforcement, NRCS = Natural Resource Conservation Service, NKAPC = Northern Kentucky Area Planning Commission, NKU = Northern Kentucky University, AML = Abandoned Mine Lands.

1:24,000 geologic map landslides
These landslide locations (polygons) were mapped on the 7.5-minute, 1:24,000-scale geologic quadrangles published jointly by the Kentucky Geological Survey and US Geological Survey from 1960 to 1978. Attributes include original map symbol and formation name, as well as county, quadrangle, and Area Development District. Landslides were not mapped on all quadrangles. Search source data on the KGS publications search page: http://kgs.uky.edu/kgsweb/PubsSearching/PubsSimpleSearch.asp.

Landslide areas derived from LiDAR
These landslides (polygons) were mapped using 1 m resolution (horizontal) Light Detection and Ranging (LiDAR) data. Using hillshade digital elevation models, potential landslide locations were identified and digitized. Locations were field verified, where possible. Comments included are notes and observations taken during the mapping of these slides. For more information regarding these landslides and LiDAR see KGS RI_24_12. http://kgs.uky.edu/kgsweb/PubsSearching/MoreInfo.asp?titleInput=17614&map=0.

Landslide areas derived from aerial photography
This layer (polygons) represents mapped landslides including earthflows, debris slides, and slumps. The data come from a series of published Landslide and Related Features Maps and Landslide Potential Maps that cover most of southeastern and south-central Kentucky. Landslides were interpreted from aerial photographs and historical records. The features digitized (polygons) depict generalized slope conditions as they existed at the time of field checking (1977-1981). Slope stability may decrease by excavation, loading, and changes in drainage conditions. The data are from preliminary type maps and are suited for general planning purposes only. Search source data on the KGS publications search page: http://kgs.uky.edu/kgsweb/PubsSearching/PubResults.asp?pubtype=Landslide+Map&searchtype=typeofpub.

Areas susceptible to debris flows
This layer (lines) represents debris flow deposits or areas susceptible to debris flows. Primarily these areas are shallow, narrow ravines containing variable accumulations of colluvium. The data come from a series of published Landslide and Related Features Maps and Landslide Potential Maps that cover most of southeastern and south-central Kentucky. The features were interpreted from aerial photographs and historical records. The debris flows digitized (lines) depict generalized slope conditions as they existed at the time of field checking (1977-1981). Areas of thick colluvium are susceptible to rapid movement during intense rainfall. The data are from preliminary type maps and are suited for general planning purposes only. Search source data on the KGS publications search page: http://kgs.uky.edu/kgsweb/PubsSearching/PubResults.asp?pubtype=Landslide+Map&searchtype=typeofpub.

Landslide Basics
Landslides are the downslope movement of rock, soil, or both under the influence of gravity. A combination of steep slopes, excessive pore water levels, geology, and slope modification are the main causes of landslides. Landslides types (translational, rotational, etc.) vary by the rate of movement, type of material involved, and structure of the failure plane. Increased population, rapid urbanization, and development will likely cause an increasing trend in landslide activity.
landslide diagram displaying translational and rotational slide types.
Causes
General causes of landslides include water, steep slopes, easily weathered rock, natural erosion, and artificial slope modification. These causes when combined with certain triggers create areas susceptible to sliding.
Triggers
Intense rainfall or rapid snowmelt
Groundwater level changes
Poor drainage
Vegetation removal
Excavation of toe slopes (steepening)
Loading extra material on top of the slope
Leakage from pipes
Earthquakes


Related Links:

Geologic Map Service Tutorials:


Overview of Map Functionality
Most of the map functionality is provided in the tabs on the right-side of the map interface:

Tools. The tool tab contains standard tools for zoom and pan control of the map. In addition there are several custom tools:

Query. This functionality allows you to search the Kentucky Geological Survey database for geologic descriptions from KGS publications, maps, and field notes and highlight those units on the map. Follow the instructions on the tab for more information about using this feature.

Legend. This tab provides explanations of symbology for the map layout. The map unit colors display the map colors for the units in the viewed extent. Other map symbols are displayed below the colors and are also displayed with each map layer on the "Layers" tab.

Layers. This tab provides controls for changing the layout of the map. There are three main sections in this tab: Geologic Information. There are two ways to get information about geologic units or other features on the map. The identity tool , described above, is used to gather information about specific features. It works by clicking on the map and the results are sent to a pop-up window. The identity tool only returns descriptions from the 1:24,000-scale GQ's. Be aware that the sensitivity of the tool is scale-dependant. Clicking at small scales may return descriptions for multiple map units or features.

The Geologic Information tab provides comprehensive searches for all information that pertains to the map extent. Because of the larger amount of information that is accessed, the searches are provided from individual links. The results are grouped by type of source and then by the individual source title. The source title is a link to the KGS online list of publications, where many publications can be viewed. For lithology descriptions, a portion of the graphic stratigraphic column is provided for context, and the full stratigraphic column is accessed from a link.