What is a landslide?
A landslide is the movement of a mass of rock, debris or earth down a slope.
Landslides can be triggered by natural causes or by human activity. Natural causes include saturation from rainfall, vibrations from earthquakes, or undercutting of cliffs and banks by rivers or floodwater. Human causes include removal of vegetation, interference with drainage or construction works.
Landslides on private property
It is the responsibility of individuals to ensure their homes are not at risk of landslides.
Council can advise of the areas that are most likely to be affected by ground movement. However, only a qualified geotechnical engineering consultant can provide a landowner with detailed advice about their site.
If residents feel insecure about the geographical stability of their homes they can contact a geotechnical engineering company or contact their insurer. Council’s website has a database of consultants and their contact details: Visit the Development advice and enquiries page
As the landowner, they are responsible for taking any reasonable steps to mitigate harm to their property or to others.
Residents should check with their insurers to ensure that they have coverage for a range of events and that the level of coverage is appropriate to their needs.
When does Council get involved?
Council may become involved in a landslide incident if it involves any potential impact or damage to Council property, assets or infrastructure, such as stormwater, water or wastewater pipes.
Council may also be called to inspect emergency landslides, and provide basic technical guidance to emergency agencies.
What to do if you suspect imminent landslide danger
- Call NSW Police as the lead agency for landslide emergencies.
- Inform affected neighbours immediately.
- Evacuate the area to a safe location.