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Road Location and Construction Practices: Effects on Landslide Frequency and Size in the Oregon Coast Range

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The effects of road location and construction practices on landslide frequency and size were studied in a 300,000-ac area of the Oregon Coast Range. Roads were divided into two groups. Roads in Group I had been built using a combination of steep road grades and full-bench, endhaul construction to minimize slide risk. Group II roads were built using location and construction practices typical of the late 1960s and early 1970s. Using steep road grades to maintain ridgetop locations and full-bench end-haul construction did reduce landslide frequency and size on Group I, as compared to Group II, roads. The marginal cost of reducing slide volumes/road-mile from the volumes found on Group II roads to the volumes found on Group I roads was six times greater in more plastic than in less plastic soils when roads crossed slopes of equal steepness. When roads crossed slopes with a sideslope steeper than 50%, the estimated cost of reducing the volume/road-mile of slide from Group II to Group I levels ranged from $81/yd³ ($154/ac) to over $12,000/yd³ ($3675/ac), depending on landtype, sideslope, and endhaul distance. West. J. Appl. For. 2(4):119-124, October 1987.
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Document Type: Journal Article

Affiliations: Department of Forest Engineering, Oregon State University, Corvallis, 97331

Publication date: 1987-10-01

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  • Each regional journal of applied forestry focuses on research, practice, and techniques targeted to foresters and allied professionals in specific regions of the United States and Canada. The Western Journal of Applied Forestry covers the western United States, including Alaska, and western Canada; WJAF will also consider manuscripts reporting research in northern Mexico that has potential application in the southwestern United States.
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