University of Edinburgh

BSL Geography Glossary - Landslide - definition

Definition: Landslides happen in areas of mountains and hills where the land is made of soil and/or rock. Heavy rainfall can cause the soil to become saturated with water, which is very heavy. Gravity then pulls the soil causing it to slide down the hill or mountain. The sign in the video may look similar to the sign for ice or glacier, but landslides do not occur with glaciers, only with rocks or soils. You can often see evidence of landslides, for example a crescent-shaped scar on the mountain-side. Landslides also happen along roads and can block the way. Landslides can destroy property such as houses.