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Footing sliding resistance - Friction

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I'm having a Monday morning brain freeze and thought this was a no-brainer
but can't find a definitive answer.  

I am being told by the Geologist on a sloping (2H:1V) residential lot that
the coefficient of friction is .45 (no units).  He is also indicating that a
wider footing will add some needed resistance to sliding.  

I don't think this is correct in that the coefficient should only depend on
the amount of gravity (vertical) load and not on the area of the bearing
area.  Therefore, making my footings wider won't really help my sliding
problem other than to add a little more weight.  Am I thinking clearly here?

Another question.......I will have some granular fill (varies from 1' to 6'
thick) below a basement floor slab.  I think this helps my sliding
resistance by adding weight to the system as it interfaces with the soil
below.  Since I am having the slope benched I would like to use this
resistance (weight x coef of frict).  Opinions????????  

Thanks for your input!!!!!

Haffner Consulting Engineering
Office & Fax:  541-478-3052 

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