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Hollywood Hills Landslide Buried A Car And Trapped Residents In Their House

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Multiple homes in the Hollywood Hills have been evacuated after the backyard of one home slid into the front yards of two houses down below.

The incident occurred yesterday evening at about 5:30 p.m. in the 8100 block of West Laurel View Drive, according to the L.A. Times. The backyard of a home on Hillside Avenue slid down the hill, burying one car and taking out power lines along the way. Residents of one of two affected homes located below on Laurel View Drive were stuck inside their house as a result of the landslide, but were safely rescued by firefighters.

The landslide resulted in about 20 tons of debris moving downhill, KTLA reports. Five homes were evacuated and two were red-tagged. Some 380 residents lost power due to the landslide, but most customers are with power again as of this morning, NBC 4 reports. TMZ reports that one of the red tagged homes belongs to singer Demi Lovato. She has yet to move in, though purchased the house in September.

Another landslide resulted in the temporary closure of Laurel Canyon Boulevard several days ago.

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According to the United States Geological Survey:

Almost every landslide has multiple causes. Slope movement occurs when forces acting down-slope (mainly due to gravity) exceed the strength of the earth materials that compose the slope. Causes include factors that increase the effects of down-slope forces and factors that contribute to low or reduced strength. Landslides can be initiated in slopes already on the verge of movement by rainfall, snowmelt, changes in water level, stream erosion, changes in ground water, earthquakes, volcanic activity, disturbance by human activities, or any combination of these factors. Earthquake shaking and other factors can also induce landslides underwater. These landslides are called submarine landslides. Submarine landslides sometimes cause tsunamis that damage coastal areas. 

Los Angeles was hit with heavy rains last week, but it remains unclear what caused this most recent landslide. L.A. Building and Safety inspectors and engineers are investigating the incident. Department spokesman David Lara told the L.A. Times that it may take a while to figure out the exact cause, but added, "Of course, we think last week's rain probably contributed to it."