Written by Kyle Aevermann, Posted: Mon, March 24 2014 at 5:43 PM, Updated: Mon, March 24 2014 at 6:31 PM
Ashland, Ore. -- The fatal mudslide in Washington over the weekend now has local geologists looking at the possibility of slides in southern Oregon and northern California.
Geologist Eric Dittmer says mud and landslides can happen just about anywhere, more particularly if there's a slope in the land, like a hill or mountain. And they're usually caused by heavy, constant rain.
Area's burnt by wildfires are even more at risk.
"Because the roots structure of plants, especially trees, tend hold the soil in place, and if you have a fire and those trees are gone then the soil is vulnerable," Dittmer said.
Maps from the Oregon Department of Geology and Mineral Industries shows areas across the state that have an increased risk for slides, many right here in the Rogue Valley.
Dittmer says the only way to be prepared is to educate yourself before moving into a home near a slope.
He suggests having an engineering geologist look at the land and assess it's potential for instability and the potential for a landslide.
To see a map of at risk areas, you can click here.
Kyle Aevermann reports weekdays and anchors NBC 5 News Weekends. He joined NBC 5 News in March 2012 as a morning producer and reporter. Prior to joining KOBI, Kyle interned at KISL-FM on Catalina Island, CA. He was also a regular contributor to CNN's citizen journalism program.
Originally from the Chicago-land area, Kyle moved to the Pacific Northwest in 2009 to work in the social media industry. Kyle enjoys hiking, traveling, learning about cultures, and has a serious love for food.