The 27 May 1937 catastrophic flow failure of gold tailings at Tlalpujahua, Michoacán, Mexico

On 27 May 1937, after one week of sustained heavy rainfall, a voluminous flood caused the death of at least 300 people and the destruction of the historic El Carmen church and several neighborhoods in the mining region of Tlalpujahua, Michoacán, central Mexico. This destructive flood was triggered by the breaching of the impoundment of the Los Cedros tailings and the sudden release of circa 16 Mt of water-saturated waste materials. The muddy silty flood, moving at estimated speeds of 20–25 m s−1, was channelized along the Dos Estrellas and Tlalpujahua drainages and devastated everything along its flow path.

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