Articles | Volume 2
15 Sep 2005
15 Sep 2005

Analysis of shallow failures triggered by the 14-16 November 2002 event in the Albaredo valley, Valtellina (Northern Italy)

S. Dapporto, P. Aleotti, N. Casagli, and G. Polloni

Abstract. On 14-16 November 2002 the North Italy was affected by an intense rainfall event: in the Albaredo valley (Valtellina) more than 200 mm of rain fell triggering about 50 shallow landslides, mainly soil slips and soil slip-debris flows.

Landslides occurred above the critical rainfall thresholds computed by Cancelli and Nova (1985) and Ceriani et al. (1994) for the Italian Central Alps: in fact the cumulative precipitation at the soil slips initiation time was 230 mm (in two days) with a peak intensity of 15 mm/h.

A coupled analysis of seepage and instability mechanisms is performed in order to evaluate the potential for slope failure during the event. Changes in positive and negative pore water pressures during the event are modelled by a finite element analysis of water flow in transient conditions, using as boundary condition for the nodes along the slope surface the recorded rainfall rate. The slope stability analysis is conducted applying the limit equilibrium method, using pore water pressure distributions obtained in the different time steps by the seepage analysis as input data for the calculation of the factor of safety.