Laboratory experiments on rainfall-induced flowslide from pore pressure and moisture content measurements
M. R. Hakro and I. S. H. Harahap
Universti Teknologi, PETRONAS, Civil Engineering Department, Tronoh, Malaysia
Received: 23 Jan 2015 – Accepted for review: 01 Feb 2015 – Discussion started: 24 Feb 2015
Abstract. During or immediately after rainfall many slope failures have been observed. The slope failure occurred due to rainfall infiltration that rapidly increase the pore pressure and trigger the slope failure. Numerous studies have been conducted to investigate the rainfall-induced slope failure, but the mechanism of slope failure is still not well clarified. To investigate mechanism of rainfall-induced slope failure laboratory experiments have been conducted in flume. The slope was prepared with sandy soil in flume with constant inclination of 45°, because most of rainfall-induced slope failure occurred in sandy soil and on steep slope. The hydrological parameters such as pore pressure and moisture content were measured with piezometers and advanced Imko TDRs respectively. The slope failure occurred due to increase in moisture content and rise in pore pressure. During the flowslide type of slope failure the sudden increase in pore pressure was observed. The higher moisture content and pore pressure was at the toe of the slope. The pore pressure was higher at the toe of the slope and smaller at the upper part of the slope. After the saturation the run-off was observed at the toe of the slope that erodes the toe and forming the gullies from toe to upper part of the slope. In the case antecedent moisture conditions the moisture content and the pore pressure increased quickly and producing the surface runoff at the horizontal part of the slope. The slope having less density suffer from flowslide type of the failure, however in dense slope no major failure was occurred even at higher rainfall intensity. The antecedent moisture accompanied with high rainfall intensity also not favors the initiation of flowslide in case of dense slope. The flowslide type of failure can be avoided by controlling the density of soil slope. Knowing such parameters that controls the large mass movement helpful in developing the early warning system for flowslide type of failure.
Hakro, M. R. and Harahap, I. S. H.: Laboratory experiments on rainfall-induced flowslide from pore pressure and moisture content measurements, Nat. Hazards Earth Syst. Sci. Discuss., 3, 1575-1613, doi:10.5194/nhessd-3-1575-2015, 2015.