Karanganyar - UGM research team conducts geological map to anticipate landslides as well as to review the condition of the landslide detection tools that have been installed since 2008 in landslides-prone area in Tawang Mangu, Karanganyar Regency, Central Java. The landslide detection tools made by two lecturers of Faculty of Engineering, Prof. Dwikorita Karnawati and Faisal Fathani, M.T, PhD, are working well.
According to Faisal Fathani, the device is to detect cracks in the soil to determine the potential for landslides. In times of danger, the device will send a signal so that the siren will sound as early warning. People will have to be alert and do evacuation. The sound reaches to a radius of 500 meters. "Therefore, we always involve the community for the tool operation and maintenance," Faisal said on the sidelines of his visit to Ledoksari Hamlet in Tawangmangu on Sunday (22/4).
Up to now, there have been 30 landslide detection devices installed at several locations in several areas prone to landslides in Java and outside Java, some in Kebumen, Karanganyar, Banjarnegara, Situbondo, Kulonprogo and mining areas in Kalimantan.
Dwikorita said the landslide detection tool was being improved. This tool has even completed its third generation and has been given international patent and award. Dwikorita conveyed, the first generation device has been copied and marketed by Chinese Manufacture. "It happened when a few researchers from China were invited to review the location in Kebumen," the Professor of Geology Department said.
Further she explained the tool making uses 95 percent of local components. The price of three types of landslide detection tools varies according to the level of sophistication. "The price ranges from 5 to 20 million rupiah," she said.
Wagimin (37), Head of RT 04 Ledok Sari Hamlet, acknowledged there are four tools being installed in the hamlet. The tools were installed after the landslide that claimed 35 victims in 2007. Installation was done together with KKN PPM students, with free-of-charge procurement and installation of tools. "For two months the people were invited to join the training. This tool is only functioned during the rainy season," he said.
Currently there are 170 households in Ledoksari. The landslide continues to be a threat. The government's request for the people to relocate is ignored by most residents who grow vegetables or become traders.
Geological expert UGM, Ir. Sugeng Wijono, M.S, said that Ledoksari area is also threatened by landslides due to its geographical area which is surrounded by hills with a relatively steep slope, composed of weathered breccias andesite and cut by a stout field. It lacks of vegetation as the buffer of water and soil movement during the rainy season. "The solution is to reduce the slope by making terracing and reforestation by planting many pines," he said.