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Emergency Preparedness: Mudslide Response and Recovery


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Mudslides can damage collections in many ways.  Book shelves may be pushed over and books, papers, and photographs dropped, broken, scattered and covered in mud.  Mud may be contaminated with debris, can leak into drawers, and can lead to mold growth, as well as cause bleeding of inks and staining.  When mud dries, it can become caked on materials, in some cases making it more difficult to remove without further damage to collections.  However, it may be possible to salvage, dry, or clean wet and damaged collections.  In general, resources for salvage and recovery after floods apply.

For more information, see the following links:

Response to Floods and Water Damage for Libraries, Archives, Museums, and Other Repositories - provides extensive guidance for preparedness, response, and salvage.

When the Waters Rise - summarizes key steps in flood response.

Quick Reference: Disaster Response and Recovery - provides information for immediate use by institutions and individuals faced with collection salvage and recovery.

Video demonstration of how to wash CDs

Video demonstration of how to wash audio cassettes

Video demonstration of how to wash video cassettes

Recommendations are compiled here to provide a convenient, efficient access to key concepts for reducing risks and responding to or recovering from emergencies. These suggestions are general, and based on good practice in libraries, archives, museums, and other collections-holding institutions. They may be superseded by requirements of a specific institution or emergency, or by the instructions of civil defense or other emergency responders.

Find additional information about landslides and mudslides at:


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