San Clemente, California, is taking steps to avoid a similar disaster

How an ‘ancient landslide’ keeps threatening a railroad, homes in San Clemente, California

This aerial photo shows homes on the east side of Mountain Road in San Clemente, California, after the landslide left several homes damaged. Photo by Michael Robinson, Los Angeles Times/Getty Images.

SAN CLEMENTE, Calif. — On the edge of California’s rugged coastline, homes on the east side of Mountain Road were largely spared when a landslide and subsequent tsunami from the El Nino earthquake destroyed them. But residents of the homes that hadn’t been threatened were caught in the crossfire of a new disaster that’s only now getting under way.

A “major slide” on Monday sent mud, rock and other debris pouring down on the community and its homes. The mud, along with a tsunami, buried a major chunk of the community to the street level and damaged nearly every structure, making it a “major disaster,” according to the United States Geological Survey.

The slide, which began about 1:30 a.m. Monday in the community of about 12,000 people, has continued since that time. The United States Geological Survey said Monday that the slide moved over 200 yards of the area.

San Clemente is a relatively young town that’s not known for seismic activity. A big reason for that is its location at the junction of the Salton Sea fault line and the San Andreas fault, areas that are prone to earthquakes. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Association, which provides guidelines for disaster prevention, listed the town on its “not at risk” list of earthquake locations.

In the case of Monday’s “major landslide,” though, it was within the last two months. The fault line is not a big one, but it is one that runs the length of San Clemente. The San Andreas fault runs nearly a mile farther south, and the earthquake that caused the tsunami on Friday also ran north of the town.

The city of San Clemente, which is about 25 miles north, told the Times that it was taking steps to avoid similar disaster in the future. City officials said that

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