Title: Building vulnerability to debris flows in Taiwan: a preliminary study
Authors: Lo, Wen-Chun
Tsao, Ting-Chi
Hsu, Chih-Hao
Department of Civil Engineering
Keywords: Vulnerability;Debris flow;Risk analysis;Building content;Building structure;Taiwan
Issue Date: 1-Dec-2012
Abstract: In quantitative risk analyses for natural hazards, vulnerability can be expressed as the ratio of reconstruction, replacement or reproduction expenses due to a damage caused by a certain process intensity and the original value of the element at risk exposed. To discuss the building vulnerability under debris flow events, the ratio is mostly related to debris flow inundation height, building materials and building values. Different types of buildings would resist to the impact of debris flows differently, resulting in different damage levels even under the same inundation height. After debris flow events, the damages to a building include the content loss and the structure loss, which is also variable due to the individual building conditions. This study proposes a flowchart to establish building vulnerability curves through estimating the damages to buildings after debris flow hazards. The losses of content and structure are firstly calculated separately to obtain the loss ratios with respect to original buildings. Secondly, by combining the content and structure loss ratio, the building vulnerability function is derived. In this paper, the original building content value was obtained from governmental statistic records and was based on the market price, and the structure value was received from a regional architecture office. The losses resulting from debris flow impacts were synthetically derived following field surveys. To combine the content and structure losses, a unit building with a floor area of 60 m(2) was assumed. The result shows that due to a higher percentage of content value compared with the total building value, the loss ratio resulting from debris flows in Taiwan is higher compared with European studies, in particular with respect to high-frequency but low-magnitude events. The concept of obtaining building vulnerability is particularly suitable for regions where well-documented building loss records are unavailable.
URI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s11069-012-0124-6
ISSN: 0921-030X
DOI: 10.1007/s11069-012-0124-6
Volume: 64
Issue: 3
Begin Page: 2107
End Page: 2128
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