The occurrence of typhoon Herb in 1996 caused massive landslides in the Shenmu area of Taiwan. Many people died and stream and river beds were covered by meters of debris. Debris flows almost always take place in the Shenmu area during the flood season, especially in the catchment areas around Tsushui river and Aiyuzih river. Anthropogenic and natural factors that cause debris flow occurrences are complex and numerous. The precise conditions of initiation are difficult to be identified, but three factors are generally considered to be the most important ones, i.e. rainfall characteristics, geologic conditions and topography. This study proposes a simple and feasible process that combines remote sensing technology and multi-stage high-precision DTMs from aerial orthoimages and airborne LiDAR with field surveys to establish a connection between three major occurrence factors that trigger debris flows in the Shenmu area.