, Volume 15, Issue 6, pp 1215–1221 | Cite as

Rainfall-induced shallow landslides caused by ex-Tropical Cyclone Debbie, 31st March 2017

  • Jacob Cogan
  • Ivan Gratchev
  • Gonghui Wang
Recent Landslides


Every year, Australia experiences tropical cyclones that bring large amounts of rainfall, causing flooding and damage to infrastructure and road closure due to landslips. In March 2017, tropical cyclone Debbie hit the Queensland coast dumping 747 mm of rainfall within 2 days to the Gold Coast region. As a result, multiple shallow landslides occurred in Gold Coast and northern New South Wales due to the increase in soil saturation. A field investigation was conducted from several sites between Gold Coast-Springbrook road and Tallebudgera creek road to identify geological settings and landslide characteristics. Key findings show that slides predominantly occurred in weathered meta-sediments of the Neranleigh-Fernvale Beds within a depth of 1–2 m. Furthermore, a series of shear box tests revealed that the shear strength of the soil significantly decreased when saturation occurred.


Rainfall-induced landslide Cyclone Shear strength 



We would like to acknowledge the following people for the assistance and guidance in the construction of this paper; the Gold Coast City Council: in particular, Mr. Adam Graham for providing landslide locations and Ms. Jovita Citra for aiding in the collection of samples and field/laboratory investigation.

Funding information

This research was performed with the financial support of the Griffith University Postgraduate Research Scholarship (GUPRS) and the Griffith University Short Term Visiting Research Fellowship.

Supplementary material

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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Griffith UniversityGold CoastAustralia
  2. 2.Kyoto UniversityKyotoJapan

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