Aug 17 2012

The Best Ever Debris Flow Video?

Map picture

This week we ran into one of the craziest videos we’ve ever seen of debris flow during heavy rainfall in the town of Virgen, Austria about 2 weeks ago. It’s simply unreal.

The video catches the speed and power of these mudflows remarkably well.  Note also the pulsing behavior that they show, which is characteristic of these types of landslides, and also the very long wavelength standing waves that the flows created. (HT: AGU Blogosphere)

At one point in the video, it appears to be a boulder floating in the debris flow! Simply amazing. It doesn’t appear to have done a whole lot of damage, just a lot of clean up needed.


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  1. Brian

    Amazing! Are these channels engineered specifically for these muddy debris flows? For example, are those circular obstacles meant to slow down the flows in a specific way? It almost seemed like the flows were getting supercritical and forming standing waves at one point.

    Great stuff.

    1. Anthony Alvarado

      Good questions, I was wondering about the circular obstacles as well. I’ll try to do some more research on it…

  2. Michael

    In the village of Austria?!

    1. Anthony Alvarado

      Oops! Thanks for the catch. Updated!

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