Landslides are a serious geological hazard throughout much of New Zealand. A landslide is the movement of rock, soil and vegetation down a slope. Landslides can range in size from a single boulder or a rock fall, to a very large avalanche of debris with huge quantities of rock and soil that can be spread across many kilometres.
Heavy rainfall or earthquakes can cause a landslide. Human activity, such as removal of trees and vegetation, steep roadside cuttings or leaking water pipes can also cause landslides. Most landslides occur without warning and it’s important to recognise the warning signs and act quickly.
GNS Science undertakes landslide research, ground investigations, land instability monitoring and rock testing.