Dataset Open Access

Two multi-temporal datasets to track the enhanced landsliding after the 2008 Wenchuan earthquake

Domènech, Guillem; Yang, Fan; Guo, Xiaojun; Fan, Xuanmei; Scaringi, Gianvito; Dai, Lanxin; He, Chaoyang; Xu, Qiang; Huang, Runqiu

We release two datasets that track the enhanced landsliding induced by the 2008 Mw 7.9 Wenchuan earthquake over a portion of the Longmen mountains, at the eastern margin of the Tibetan plateau (Sichuan, China). The first dataset is a geo-referenced multi-temporal polygon-based inventory of pre- and coseismic landslides, post-seismic remobilisations of coseismic landslide debris, and post-seismic landslides (new failures). It covers 471 km2 in the earthquake’s epicentral area, from 2005 to 2018. The second dataset records the debris flows that occurred from 2008 to 2017 in a larger area (~17,000 km2), together with information on their triggering rainfall as recorded by a network of rain gauges. For some well-monitored events, we provide more detailed data on rainfall, discharge, flow depth and density. The datasets can be used to analyse, at various scales, the patterns of landsliding caused by the earthquake. They can be compared to inventories relative to past or new earthquakes or other triggers to reveal common or distinctive controlling factors. To our knowledge, no other inventories that track the temporal evolution of earthquake-induced mass wasting have been made freely available thus far. Our datasets can be accessed from We also encourage other researchers to share their datasets to facilitate research on post-seismic geological hazards.

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