Articles | Volume 6, issue 2
20 Apr 2006
20 Apr 2006

Rainfall induced landslides in December 2004 in south-western Umbria, central Italy: types, extent, damage and risk assessment

M. Cardinali, M. Galli, F. Guzzetti, F. Ardizzone, P. Reichenbach, and P. Bartoccini

Abstract. The autumn of 2004 was particularly wet in Umbria, with cumulative rainfall in the period from October to December exceeding 600 mm. On 4–6 December and on 25–27 December 2004, two storms hit the Umbria Region producing numerous landslides, which were abundant near the town of Orvieto where they affected volcanic deposits and marine sediments. In this work, we document the type and abundance of the rainfall-induced landslides in the Orvieto area, in south-western Umbria, we study the rainfall conditions that triggered the landslides, including the timing of the slope failures, we determine the geotechnical properties of the failed volcanic materials, and we discuss the type and extent of damage produced by the landslides. We then use the recent event landslide information to test a geomorphological assessment of landslide hazards and risk prepared for the village of Sugano, in the Orvieto area. Based on the results of the test, we update the existing landslide hazards and risk scenario for extremely rapid landslides, mostly rock falls, and we introduce a new landslide scenario for rapid and very rapid landslides, including soil slides, debris flows and debris avalanches.