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Project ID: 03-1-4-14

Year: 2003

Date Started: 09/24/2003

Date Completed: 05/03/2006

Title: Evaluation of Post-Wildfire Debris Flow Mitigation Methods and Development of Decision-Support Tools

Project Proposal Abstract: The production of debris flows can be one of the most hazardous consequences of wildfires in the urban/wildland interface. Debris flows can occur with little warning, are capable of transporting large material over relatively gentle gradients, and may develop momentum and impact forces that cause considerable destruction to structures at risk. Although substantial resources are expended to mitigate the potential for these destructive events after fires, little is known about what mitigation approaches are most effective, and under what conditions varying approaches may be appropriate. The purpose of this study is to evaluate the effectiveness of existing approaches used to mitigate the hazards posed by post-wildfire debris flows, and to provide guidelines for the selection of appropriate designs based on parameters easily defined after wildfires. These objectives will directly address some of the needs outlined in Task 4 (Emergency Stabilization, Rehabilitation, and Restoration) of the Announcement for Proposals. The objectives will be accomplished by reviewing technical literature and agency files, interviewing emergency response personnel, and conducting detailed field evaluation of watershed characteristics and responses to wildfire and rainfall. From this data, the conditions under which various methods are effective will be identified and both rapid and long-term response tools will be developed.

Principal Investigator: Paul M. Santi

Agency/Organization: Colorado School of Mines

Branch or Dept: Department of Geology & Geological Engineering

Other Project Collaborators




Branch or Dept

Co-Principal Investigator

Jerome V. DeGraff

Forest Service

Sierra National Forest

Co-Principal Investigator

Jerry D. Higgins

Colorado School of Mines

Department of Geology & Geological Engineering

Federal Cooperator

Susan H. Cannon

USGS-Geological Survey

Geologic Hazards Team-CO School of Mines

Project Locations


There are no project locations identified for this project.

Project Deliverables

Final Report view or print

("Results presented in JFSP Final Reports may not have been peer-reviewed and should be interpreted as tentative until published in a peer-reviewed source.")

  ID Type Title
    2553 Journal Article Effective Debris Flow Mitigation at Lemon Dam, La Plata County, Colorado
    184 MS Thesis An Evaluation of Erosion Control Methods After Wildfire in Debris-Flow Prone Areas (V.G. deWolfe)
    1320 Invited Paper/Presentation Evaluation of Post-Wildfire Debris Flow Mitigation Methods and Development of Decision Support Tools
    1368 Conference/Symposia/Workshop Mass Wasting in Disturbed Watersheds
    1349 Invited Paper/Presentation A Method for the Rapid Assessment of the Probability and Volume of Post-Wildfire Debris Flows from Recently Burned Basins in the Inter-Mountain West, U.S.A.
    1350 Conference/Symposia/Workshop Arrest of a Debris Flow at Lemon Dam, La Plata County, Colorado Using Erosion Control Mitigation
    1351 Conference/Symposia/Workshop An Evaluation of Erosion Control Methods After Wildfire in Debris Flow Prone Areas
    1352 Conference/Symposia/Workshop Models to Predict Wildfire Related Debris-Flow Volumes
    1353 Conference/Symposia/Workshop An Asssessment of the Accuracy and Repeatability of Debris Flow Velocity Calculations
    1354 Conference/Symposia/Workshop Critial Debris Flow Analysis Parameters--Velocity
    1355 Conference/Symposia/Workshop Debris-Flow Runout Estimations Using Topographic Parameters
    1356 Conference/Symposia/Workshop Sensitivity and Appropriateness of Debris Flow Runup and Superelevation Equations
    1357 Conference/Symposia/Workshop Criteria for the Selection of Appropriate Debris Flow Runout Equations
    1358 Conference/Symposia/Workshop Sources of Debris Flow Material in Burned Areas
    1361 Conference/Symposia/Workshop A Model for Sediment Accumulation and Debris Flow Production in Burned Areas
    1362 Conference/Symposia/Workshop Comparisons of Debris Flow Volume Measurements and Predictions
    1363 Invited Paper/Presentation Debris Flows - Basic Morphologies and Processes
    1364 Conference/Symposia/Workshop Designing Debris Flow Channels and Deflection Berms
    1365 Conference/Symposia/Workshop Critical Debris Flow Analysis Parameters Yield Strength and Viscosity
    1366 Conference/Symposia/Workshop Mudslide Mania: Characteristics and Geologic Investigations of Debris Flows and Alluvial Fans in the Rocky Mountain Region
    1367 Conference/Symposia/Workshop Debris Flows Initiated by Runoff and Erosion: Processes, Recognition, and Hazard Implications
    5864 Conference/Symposia/Workshop Relations Between Debris-Flow Volumes Generaged from Recently Burned Basins and Basin Morphology, Triggering Storm Rainfall and Material Properties
    5865 Conference/Symposia/Workshop Sources of Debris Flow Material in Burned Areas
    5685 Conference/Symposia/Workshop The Influence of Water Content and Coarse Grained Fraction on the Rheological Parameters of Debris Flow Deposits

Supporting Documents

The following supporting documents are available for this project.

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