"Landslides are a national problem as they occur in significant numbers throughout the United States. The most significant landslide problems occur on the Pacific Coast, and in the Rocky Mountains, the Appalachian Mountains, Hawaii and Puerto Rico. It is estimated that landslide-related fatalities average from 25 to 50 per year, and direct and indirect economic costs to the nation range up to $3 billion per year. The costs of landslides are increasing rapidly as lands susceptible to failure are developed for highways, housing, industry, and recreation. USGS landslide hazards investigations focus on landslides that occur in association with other natural disasters such as earthquakes, volcanic eruptions, floods and heavy rains, hurricanes, and wildfires. The Landslide Hazards Program (LHP) and its predecessor have operated since the mid 1970's as a Congressionally-authorized program dedicated to the reduction of damages and avoidance of hazards from the different forms of landslides. The focus of the program is national, but it also responds to requests for assistance in foreign countries from the Department of State, as well as from international organizations such as the World Bank and the United Nations. As the only Federal program dedicated to landslide hazards, the LHP provides results of investigations for use by private consultants in geology and geotechnical engineering and by planners and decision makers at all levels of government and in the private sector."
United States Geological Survey: http://www.usgs.gov/