Terrain Hazards Assessment

Knight Piésold has extensive terrain hazards assessment experience for hydropower and mining projects. We undertake such studies for occupied structures, such as powerhouses, construction/operation residences, and for many types of linear infrastructure, including roads, pipelines, and transmission lines.  We analyze landslide hazards and risks for a wide variety of project sites, ranging from mountainous and permafrost landscapes to subtropical settings. 

With a quantitative risk assessment approach, Knight Piésold provides terrain hazards assessment services during all stages of development (site selection, preliminary/detailed design, environmental assessment, construction, operations, and closure). We have a track record of developing a range of cost-effective solutions, including debris flow/flood mitigation, as well as rock fall protection for penstocks, powerhouses, intake structures, transmission towers, and conveyors.

Specialist services include:

  • Hazard characterization
  • Terrain stability mapping
  • Debris flow and rock fall run-out analyses
  • Quantitative risk assessment
  • Design of debris flow, debris flood, and rock fall mitigation structures
  • Assessment of landslide debris dam outburst flood hazards
  • Landslide and snow avalanche displacement wave analyses

Knight Piésold has been proactive in harnessing techniques that facilitate geomorphic interpretation and hazard characterization. These techniques include:

  • Air photo interpretation with a digital stereoscope
  • Interpretation of shaded relief maps produced from a bare earth digital elevation model
  • Dendrochronology studies

Knight Piésold helps construction contractors and owners manage the landslide risks on their sites by developing practical management plans and assisting with the associated monitoring.