Soren M. Newman; Matthew S. Carroll; Pamela J. Jakes; Daniel R. Williams; Lorie L. Higgins
Wildfire is one of several potential disturbances that could have extraordinary impacts on individuals and communities in fire-prone areas. In this article we describe disturbance risk perceptions from interviews with residents in three Florida communities that face significant wildfire and hurricane risk. Although they live in areas characterized by emergency managers...
Balaji Bhaskar, M. S.
Monitoring and Mapping the Hurricane Harvey Flooding in Houston, Texas.Urban flooding is a hazard that causes major destruction and loss of life. High intense precipitation events have increased significantly in Houston, Texas in recent years resulting in frequent river and bayou flooding. Many of the historical storm events such as Allison, Rita and Ike have caused several billion dollars in losses for the Houston-Galveston Region. A category 4 Hurricane Harvey made landfall on South Texas resulting in heavy precipitation from Aug 25 to 29 of 2017. About 1 trillion gallons of water fell across Harris County over a 4-day period. This amount of water covers Harris County's 1,800 square miles with an average of 33 inches of water. The long rain event resulted in an average 40inch rainfall across the area in several rain gauges and the maximum rainfall of 49.6 inches was recorded near Clear Creek. The objectives of our study are to 1) Process the Geographic Information System (GIS) and satellite data from the pre and post Hurricane Harvey event in Houston, Texas and 2) Analyze the satellite imagery to map the nature and pattern of the flooding in Houston-Galveston Region. The GIS data of the study area was downloaded and processed from the various publicly available resources such as Houston Galveston Area Council (HGAC), Texas Commission of Environmental Quality (TCEQ) and Texas Natural Resource Information Systems (TNRIS). The satellite data collected soon after the Harvey flooding event were downloaded and processed using the ERDAS image processing software. The flood plain areas surrounding the Brazos River, Buffalo Bayou and the Addicks Barker reservoirs showed severe inundation. The different watershed areas affected by the catastrophic flooding in the wake of Hurricane Harvey were mapped and compared with the pre flooding event.
Bailey, James F.; Patterson, James Lee; Paulhus, Joseph Louis Hornore
Hurricane Agnes originated in the Caribbean Sea region in mid-June. Circulation barely reached hurricane intensity for a brief period in the Gulf of Mexico. The storm crossed the Florida Panhandle coastline on June 19, 1972, and followed an unusually extended overland trajectory combining with an extratropical system to bring very heavy rain from the Carolinas northward to New York. This torrential rain followed the abnormally wet May weather in the Middle Atlantic States and set the stage for the subsequent major flooding. The record-breaking floods occurred in the Middle Atlantic States in late June and early July 1972. Many streams in the affected area experienced peak discharges several times the previous maxima of record. Estimated recurrence intervals of peak flows at many gaging stations on major rivers and their tributaries exceeded 100 years. The suspended-sediment concentration and load of most flooded streams were also unusually high. The widespread flooding from this storm caused Agnes to be called the most destructive hurricane in United States history, claiming 117 lives and causing damage estimated at $3.1 billion in 12 States. Damage was particularly high in New York, Pennsylvania, Maryland, and Virginia. The detailed life history of Hurricane Agnes, including the tropical depression and tropical storm stages, is traced. Associated rainfalls are analyzed and compared with climatologic recurrence values. These are followed by a detailed description of the flood and streamflows of each affected basin. A summary of peak stages and discharges and comparison data for previous floods at 989 stations are presented. Deaths and flood damage estimates are compiled.
Wehner, M. F.; Arnold, J. R.; Knutson, T.; Kunkel, K. E.; LeGrande, A. N.
Recent droughts and associated heat waves have reached record intensity in some regions of the United States; however, by geographical scale and duration, the Dust Bowl era of the 1930s remains the benchmark drought and extreme heat event in the historical record (very high confidence). While by some measures drought has decreased over much of the continental United States in association with long-term increases in precipitation, neither the precipitation increases nor inferred drought decreases have been confidently attributed to anthropogenic forcing. The human effect on recent major U.S. droughts is complicated. Little evidence is found for a human influence on observed precipitation deficits, but much evidence is found for a human influence on surface soil moisture deficits due to increased evapotranspiration caused by higher temperatures. Future decreases in surface (top 10 cm) soil moisture from anthropogenic forcing over most of the United States are likely as the climate warms under higher scenarios. Substantial reductions in western U.S. winter and spring snowpack are projected as the climate warms. Earlier spring melt and reduced snow water equivalent have been formally attributed to human-induced warming (high confidence) and will very likely be exacerbated as the climate continues to warm (very high confidence). Under higher scenarios, and assuming no change to current water resources management, chronic, long-duration hydrological drought is increasingly possible by the end of this century. Detectable changes in some classes of flood frequency have occurred in parts of the United States and are a mix of increases and decreases. Extreme precipitation, one of the controlling factors in flood statistics, is observed to have generally increased and is projected to continue to do so across the United States in a warming atmosphere. However, formal attribution approaches have not established a significant connection of increased riverine flooding to human
Yeo, Stephen W; Blong, Russell J
At least 225 people in the Fiji Islands died as a result of the 1931 hurricane and flood, representing the largest loss of life from a natural disaster in Fiji's recent history. This paper explores the causes of disaster and the potential for recurrence. The disaster occurred because a rare event surprised hundreds of people-especially recently settled Indian farmers-occupying highly exposed floodplains in north-west Viti Levu island. The likelihood of a flood disaster of such proportions occurring today has been diminished by changed settlement patterns and building materials; however, a trend towards re-occupancy of floodplains, sometimes in fragile dwellings, is exposing new generations to flood risks. The contribution of this paper to the global hazards literature is set out in three sections: the ethnicity, gender and age of flood fatalities; the naturalness of disasters; and the merit of choice and constraint as explanations for patterns of vulnerability.
Fang, N. Z.; Cotter, J.; Gao, S.; Bedient, P. B.; Yung, A.; Penland, C.
Hurricane Harvey struck the Gulf Coast as Category 4 on August 25, 2017 with devastating and life-threatening floods in Texas. Harris County received up to 49 inches of rainfall over a 5-day period and experienced flooding level and impacts beyond any previous storm in Houston's history. The depth-duration-frequency analysis reveals that the areal average rainfall for Brays Bayou surpasses the 500-year rainfall in both 24 and 48 hours. To cope with this unprecedented event, the researchers at the University of Texas at Arlington and Rice University worked closely with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE), the National Weather Service (NWS), the Texas Division of Emergency Management (TDEM), Walter P. Moore and Associates, Inc. and Halff Associates, to conduct a series of meteorological, hydrologic and hydraulic analyses to delineate flood inundation maps. Up to eight major watersheds in Harris County were delineated based the available QPE data from WGRFC. The inundation map over Brays Bayou with their impacts from Hurricane Harvey was delineated in comparison with those of 100-, 500-year, and Probable Maximum Precipitation (PMP) design storms. This presentation will provide insights for both engineers and planners to re-evaluate the existing flood infrastructure and policy, which will help build Houston stronger for future extreme storms. The collaborative effort among the federal, academic, and private entities clearly demonstrates an effective approach for flood inundation mapping initiatives for the nation.
Ogashawara, I.; Ferreira, C.; Curtarelli, M. P.
Flooding is one of the main hazards caused by extreme events such as hurricanes and tropical storms. Therefore, flood maps are a crucial tool to support policy makers, environmental managers and other government agencies for emergency management, disaster recovery and risk reduction planning. However traditional flood mapping methods rely heavily on the interpolation of hydrodynamic models results, and most recently, the extensive collection of field data. These methods are time-consuming, labor intensive, and costly. Efficient and fast response alternative methods should be developed in order to improve flood mapping, and remote sensing has been proved as a valuable tool for this application. Our goal in this paper is to introduce a novel technique based on spectral analysis in order to aggregate knowledge and information to map coastal flood areas. For this purpose we used the Normalized Diference Water Index (NDWI) which was derived from two the medium resolution LANDSAT/TM 5 surface reflectance product from the LANDSAT climate data record (CDR). This product is generated from specialized software called Landsat Ecosystem Disturbance Adaptive Processing System (LEDAPS). We used the surface reflectance products acquired before and after the passage of Hurricane Ike for East Texas in September of 2008. We used as end member a classification of estimated flooded area based on the United States Geological Survey (USGS) mobile storm surge network that was deployed for Hurricane Ike. We used a dataset which consisted of 59 water levels recording stations. The estimated flooded area was delineated interpolating the maximum surge in each location using a spline with barriers method with high tension and a 30 meter Digital Elevation Model (DEM) from the National Elevation Dataset (NED). Our results showed that, in the flooded area, the NDWI values decreased after the hurricane landfall on average from 0.38 to 0.18 and the median value decreased from 0.36 to 0.2. However
Full Text Available Hurricane Sandy caused extensive physical and economic damage; the long-term mental health consequences are unknown. Flooding is a central component of hurricane exposure, influencing mental health through multiple pathways that unfold over months after flooding recedes. Here we assess the concordance in self-reported and Federal Emergency Management (FEMA flood exposure after Hurricane Sandy and determine the associations between flooding and anxiety, depression, and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD. Self-reported flood data and mental health symptoms were obtained through validated questionnaires from New York City and Long Island residents (N = 1231 following Sandy. Self-reported flood data was compared to FEMA data obtained from the FEMA Modeling Task Force Hurricane Sandy Impact Analysis. Multivariable logistic regressions were performed to determine the relationship between flooding exposure and mental health outcomes. There were significant discrepancies between self-reported and FEMA flood exposure data. Self-reported dichotomous flooding was positively associated with anxiety (ORadj: 1.5 [95% CI: 1.1-1.9], depression (ORadj: 1.7 [1.3-2.2], and PTSD (ORadj: 2.5 [1.8-3.4], while self-reported continuous flooding was associated with depression (ORadj: 1.1 [1.01-1.12] and PTSD (ORadj: 1.2 [1.1-1.2]. Models with FEMA dichotomous flooding (ORadj: 2.1 [1.5-2.8] or FEMA continuous flooding (ORadj: 1.1 [1.1-1.2] were only significantly associated with PTSD. Associations between mental health and flooding vary according to type of flood exposure measure utilized. Future hurricane preparedness and recovery efforts must integrate micro and macro-level flood exposures in order to accurately determine flood exposure risk during storms and realize the long-term importance of flooding on these three mental health symptoms.
McGee, Benton D.; Tollett, Roland W.; Mason, Jr., Robert R.
Pressure transducers (sensors) and high-water marks were used to document the inland water levels related to storm surge generated by Hurricane Rita in southwestern Louisiana and southeastern Texas. On September 22-23, 2005, an experimental monitoring network of sensors was deployed at 33 sites over an area of about 4,000 square miles to record the timing, extent, and magnitude of inland hurricane storm surge and coastal flooding. Sensors were programmed to record date and time, temperature, and barometric or water pressure. Water pressure was corrected for changes in barometric pressure and salinity. Elevation surveys using global-positioning systems and differential levels were used to relate all storm-surge water-level data, reference marks, benchmarks, sensor measuring points, and high-water marks to the North American Vertical Datum of 1988 (NAVD 88). The resulting data indicated that storm-surge water levels over 14 feet above NAVD 88 occurred at three locations, and rates of water-level rise greater than 5 feet per hour occurred at three locations near the Louisiana coast.
Lieberman-Cribbin, W.; Liu, B.; Schneider, S.; Schwartz, R.; Taioli, E.
Background: Hurricane Sandy caused extensive physical and economic damage but the long-term health impacts are unknown. Flooding is a central component of hurricane exposure, influencing health through multiple pathways that unfold over months after flooding recedes. This study assesses concordance in Federal Emergency Management (FEMA) and self-reported flood exposure after Hurricane Sandy to elucidate discrepancies in flood exposure assessments. Methods: Three meter resolution New York State flood data was obtained from the FEMA Modeling Task Force Hurricane Sandy Impact Analysis. FEMA data was compared to self-reported flood data obtained through validated questionnaires from New York City and Long Island residents following Sandy. Flooding was defined as both dichotomous and continuous variables and analyses were performed in SAS v9.4 and ArcGIS 10.3.1. Results: There was a moderate agreement between FEMA and self-reported flooding (Kappa statistic 0.46) and continuous (Spearman's correlation coefficient 0.50) measures of flood exposure. Flooding was self-reported and recorded by FEMA in 23.6% of cases, while agreement between the two measures on no flooding was 51.1%. Flooding was self-reported but not recorded by FEMA in 8.5% of cases, while flooding was not self-reported but indicated by FEMA in 16.8% of cases. In this last instance, 84% of people (173/207; 83.6%) resided in an apartment (no flooding reported). Spatially, the most concordance resided in the interior of New York City / Long Island, while the greatest areas of discordance were concentrated in the Rockaway Peninsula and Long Beach, especially among those living in apartments. Conclusions: There were significant discrepancies between FEMA and self-reported flood data. While macro-level FEMA flood data is a relatively less expensive and faster way to provide exposure estimates spanning larger geographic areas affected by Hurricane Sandy than micro-level estimates from cohort studies, macro
Kalyanapu, A. J.; Dullo, T. T.; Gangrade, S.; Kao, S. C.; Marshall, R.; Islam, S. R.; Ghafoor, S. K.
Hurricane Harvey that made landfall in the southern Texas this August is one of the most destructive hurricanes during the 2017 hurricane season. During its active period, many areas in coastal Texas region received more than 40 inches of rain. This downpour caused significant flooding resulting in about 77 casualties, displacing more than 30,000 people, inundating hundreds of thousands homes and is currently estimated to have caused more than $70 billion in direct damage. One of the significantly affected areas is Harris County where the city of Houston, TX is located. Covering over two HUC-8 drainage basins ( 2702 mi2), this county experienced more than 80% of its annual average rainfall during this event. This study presents an effort to reconstruct flooding caused by extreme rainfall due to Hurricane Harvey in Harris County, Texas. This computationally intensive task was performed at a 30-m spatial resolution using a rapid flood model called Flood2D-GPU, a graphics processing unit (GPU) accelerated model, on Oak Ridge National Laboratory's (ORNL) Titan Supercomputer. For this task, the hourly rainfall estimates from the National Center for Environmental Prediction Stage IV Quantitative Precipitation Estimate were fed into the Variable Infiltration Capacity (VIC) hydrologic model and Routing Application for Parallel computation of Discharge (RAPID) routing model to estimate flow hydrographs at 69 locations for Flood2D-GPU simulation. Preliminary results of the simulation including flood inundation extents, maps of flood depths and inundation duration will be presented. Future efforts will focus on calibrating and validating the simulation results and assessing the flood damage for better understanding the impacts made by Hurricane Harvey.
Chen, S. S.
The 2017 hurricane season is estimated as one of the costliest in the U.S. history. The damage and devastation caused by Hurricane Harvey in Houston, Irma in Florida, and Maria in Puerto Rico are distinctly different in nature. The complexity of hurricane impacts from extreme wind, rain, storm surge, and flooding presents a major challenge in hurricane forecasting. A detailed comparison of the storm impacts from Harvey, Irma, and Maria will be presented using observations and state-of-the-art new generation coupled atmosphere-wave-ocean hurricane forecast model. The author will also provide an overview on what we can expect in terms of advancement in science and technology that can help improve hurricane impact forecast in the near future.
Cohen, S.; Alfieri, L.; Brakenridge, G. R.; Coughlan, E.; Galantowicz, J. F.; Hong, Y.; Kettner, A.; Nghiem, S. V.; Prados, A. I.; Rudari, R.; Salamon, P.; Trigg, M.; Weerts, A.
The Global Flood Partnership (GFP; https://gfp.jrc.ec.europa.eu) is a multi-disciplinary group of scientists, operational agencies and flood risk managers focused on developing efficient and effective global flood management tools. Launched in 2014, its aim is to establish a partnership for global flood forecasting, monitoring and impact assessment to strengthen preparedness and response and to reduce global disaster losses. International organizations, the private sector, national authorities, universities and research agencies contribute to the GFP on a voluntary basis and benefit from a global network focused on flood risk reduction. At the onset of Hurricane Harvey, GFP was `activated' using email requests via its mailing service. Soon after, flood inundation maps, based on remote sensing analysis and modeling, were shared by different agencies, institutions, and individuals. These products were disseminated, to varying degrees of effectiveness, to federal, state and local agencies via emails and data-sharing services. This generated a broad data-sharing network which was utilized at the early stages of Hurricane Irma's impact, just two weeks after Harvey. In this presentation, we will describe the extent and chronology of the GFP response to both Hurricanes Harvey, Irma and Maria. We will assess the potential usefulness of this effort for event managers in various types of organizations and discuss future improvements to be implemented.
Saksena, S.; Dey, S.; Merwade, V.; Singhofen, P. J.
Hurricane Harvey, which was categorized as a 1000-year return period event, produced unprecedented rainfall and flooding in Houston. Although the expected rainfall was forecasted much before the event, there was no way to identify which regions were at higher risk of flooding, the magnitude of flooding, and when the impacts of rainfall would be highest. The inability to predict the location, duration, and depth of flooding created uncertainty over evacuation planning and preparation. This catastrophic event highlighted that the conventional approach to managing flood risk using 100-year static flood inundation maps is inadequate because of its inability to predict flood duration and extents for 500-year or 1000-year return period events in real-time. The purpose of this study is to create models that can dynamically predict the impacts of rainfall and subsequent flooding, so that necessary evacuation and rescue efforts can be planned in advance. This study uses a 2D integrated surface water-groundwater model called ICPR (Interconnected Channel and Pond Routing) to simulate both the hydrology and hydrodynamics for Hurricane Harvey. The methodology involves using the NHD stream network to create a 2D model that incorporates rainfall, land use, vadose zone properties and topography to estimate streamflow and generate dynamic flood depths and extents. The results show that dynamic flood mapping captures the flood hydrodynamics more accurately and is able to predict the magnitude, extent and time of occurrence for extreme events such as Hurricane Harvey. Therefore, integrated modeling has the potential to identify regions that are more susceptible to flooding, which is especially useful for large-scale planning and allocation of resources for protection against future flood risk.
Floods are common in the United States. Weather such as heavy rain, thunderstorms, hurricanes, or tsunamis can ... is breached, or when a dam breaks. Flash floods, which can develop quickly, often have a dangerous ...
Skalozubov, V.I.; Gablaya, T.V.; Vashchenko, V.N.; Gerasimenko, T.V.; Kozlov, I.L.
We propose a hydrodynamic model of possible flooding of the industrial site at Zaporozh'e NPP design basis earthquakes and hurricane. In contrast to the quasi-stationary approach of stress tests in the proposed model takes into account the dynamic nature of the processes of flooding, as well as a direct impact of external influences on extreme Kakhovske reservoir. As a result of hydrodynamic modeling, the possible conditions and criteria for the flooding of the industrial site at Zaporozhe extreme external influences
de Sherbinin, A. M.; Mills, J.; Borkovska, O.
Differential vulnerability is a concept that suggests that certain demographic groups - the poor, less educated, or minorities - are likely to be more impacted by climate extremes such as floods owing to their higher sensitivity and lower adaptive capacity. Differential exposure represents the concept that these same groups may be more highly exposed to flood events by virtue of their residing in less desirable, low-lying neighborhoods with higher percentages of impervious surface cover. This paper tests the hypothesis that poor communities of color were differentially exposed to flood risks in the aftermath of Hurricane Harvey, which struck Houston, Texas in August 2017. We explore the spatial relationship among census tracts with high percentages of low income communities of color, those with high percentages of impervious surface, and those most impacted by floods. We incorporat datasets disseminated by the NASA Socioeconomic Data and Application Center (SEDAC) - the Global Man-made Impervious Surface (GMIS) data set and the U.S. Census Grids 2010 - together with the American Community Survey (ACS) 2011-2015 and flood extent and depth data from FEMA. Preliminary analysis suggests that predominantly non-white neighborhoods have higher percentages of impervious surface cover, but that impervious surface cover is negatively correlated with flood risk. This paper will situate these findings in the context of a larger body of research exploring differential exposure to flood risks during Hurricanes Katrina and Sandy, as well as differential exposure to extreme heat in urban environments in Houston and beyond.
Middleton, Beth A
The nature of regeneration dynamics after hurricane flooding and salinity intrusion may play an important role in shaping coastal vegetation patterns. The regeneration potentials of coastal species, types and gradients (wetland types from seaward to landward) were studied on the Delmarva Peninsula after Hurricane Sandy using seed bank assays to examine responses to various water regimes (unflooded and flooded to 8 cm) and salinity levels (0, 1, and 5 ppt). Seed bank responses to treatments were compared using a generalized linear models approach. Species relationships to treatment and geographical variables were explored using nonmetric multidimensional scaling. Flooding and salinity treatments affected species richness even at low salinity levels (1 and 5 ppt). Maritime forest was especially intolerant of salinity intrusion so that species richness was much higher in unflooded and low salinity conditions, despite the proximity of maritime forest to saltmarsh along the coastal gradient. Other vegetation types were also affected, with potential regeneration of these species affected in various ways by flooding and salinity, suggesting relationships to post-hurricane environment and geographic position. Seed germination and subsequent seedling growth in coastal wetlands may in some cases be affected by salinity intrusion events even at low salinity levels (1 and 5 ppt). These results indicate that the potential is great for hurricanes to shift vegetation type in sensitive wetland types (e.g., maritime forest) if post-hurricane environments do not support the regeneration of extent vegetation. This article is a U.S. Government work and is in the public domain in the USA. © Botanical Society of America (outside the USA) 2016.
.... Various dam break flood conditions were modeled and inundation maps developed. Based on this analysis the dam is rated a Class 2 or significant hazard category in terms of its potential to cause downstream damage...
Frantz, Eric R.; Byrne,, Michael L.; Caldwell, Andral W.; Harden, Stephen L.
IntroductionHurricane Matthew moved adjacent to the coasts of Florida, Georgia, South Carolina, and North Carolina. The hurricane made landfall once near McClellanville, South Carolina, on October 8, 2016, as a Category 1 hurricane on the Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Wind Scale. The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) deployed a temporary monitoring network of storm-tide sensors at 284 sites along the Atlantic coast from Florida to North Carolina to record the timing, areal extent, and magnitude of hurricane storm tide and coastal flooding generated by Hurricane Matthew. Storm tide, as defined by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, is the water-level rise generated by a combination of storm surge and astronomical tide during a coastal storm.The deployment for Hurricane Matthew was the largest deployment of storm-tide sensors in USGS history and was completed as part of a coordinated Federal emergency response as outlined by the Stafford Act (Public Law 92–288, 42 U.S.C. 5121–5207) under a directed mission assignment by the Federal Emergency Management Agency. In total, 543 high-water marks (HWMs) also were collected after Hurricane Matthew, and this was the second largest HWM recovery effort in USGS history after Hurricane Sandy in 2012.During the hurricane, real-time water-level data collected at temporary rapid deployment gages (RDGs) and long-term USGS streamgage stations were relayed immediately for display on the USGS Flood Event Viewer (https://stn.wim.usgs.gov/FEV/#MatthewOctober2016). These data provided emergency managers and responders with critical information for tracking flood-effected areas and directing assistance to effected communities. Data collected from this hurricane can be used to calibrate and evaluate the performance of storm-tide models for maximum and incremental water level and flood extent, and the site-specific effects of storm tide on natural and anthropogenic features of the environment.
Pillosu, F. M.; Jurlina, T.; Baugh, C.; Tsonevsky, I.; Hewson, T.; Prates, F.; Pappenberger, F.; Prudhomme, C.
During hurricane Harvey the greater east Texas area was affected by extensive flash flooding. Their localised nature meant they were too small for conventional large scale flood forecasting systems to capture. We are testing the use of two real time forecast products from the European Centre for Medium-range Weather Forecasts (ECMWF) in combination with local vulnerability information to provide flash flood forecasting tools at the medium range (up to 7 days ahead). Meteorological forecasts are the total precipitation extreme forecast index (EFI), a measure of how the ensemble forecast probability distribution differs from the model-climate distribution for the chosen location, time of year and forecast lead time; and the shift of tails (SOT) which complements the EFI by quantifying how extreme an event could potentially be. Both products give the likelihood of flash flood generating precipitation. For hurricane Harvey, 3-day EFI and SOT products for the period 26th - 29th August 2017 were used, generated from the twice daily, 18 km, 51 ensemble member ECMWF Integrated Forecast System. After regridding to 1 km resolution the forecasts were combined with vulnerable area data to produce a flash flood hazard risk area. The vulnerability data were floodplains (EU Joint Research Centre), road networks (Texas Department of Transport) and urban areas (Census Bureau geographic database), together reflecting the susceptibility to flash floods from the landscape. The flash flood hazard risk area forecasts were verified using a traditional approach against observed National Weather Service flash flood reports, a total of 153 reported flash floods have been detected in that period. Forecasts performed best for SOT = 5 (hit ratio = 65%, false alarm ratio = 44%) and EFI = 0.7 (hit ratio = 74%, false alarm ratio = 45%) at 72 h lead time. By including the vulnerable areas data, our verification results improved by 5-15%, demonstrating the value of vulnerability information within
Jones, M.; Longenecker, H. E., III
The 2017 hurricane season brought the unprecedented landfall of three Category 4 hurricanes (Harvey, Irma and Maria). FEMA is responsible for coordinating the federal response and recovery efforts for large disasters such as these. FEMA depends on timely and accurate depth grids to estimate hazard exposure, model damage assessments, plan flight paths for imagery acquisition, and prioritize response efforts. In order to produce riverine or coastal depth grids based on observed flooding, the methodology requires peak crest water levels at stream gauges, tide gauges, high water marks, and best-available elevation data. Because peak crest data isn't available until the apex of a flooding event and high water marks may take up to several weeks for field teams to collect for a large-scale flooding event, final observed depth grids are not available to FEMA until several days after a flood has begun to subside. Within the last decade NOAA's National Weather Service (NWS) has implemented the Advanced Hydrologic Prediction Service (AHPS), a web-based suite of accurate forecast products that provide hydrograph forecasts at over 3,500 stream gauge locations across the United States. These forecasts have been newly implemented into an automated depth grid script tool, using predicted instead of observed water levels, allowing FEMA access to flood hazard information up to 3 days prior to a flooding event. Water depths are calculated from the AHPS predicted flood stages and are interpolated at 100m spacing along NHD hydrolines within the basin of interest. A water surface elevation raster is generated from these water depths using an Inverse Distance Weighted interpolation. Then, elevation (USGS NED 30m) is subtracted from the water surface elevation raster so that the remaining values represent the depth of predicted flooding above the ground surface. This automated process requires minimal user input and produced forecasted depth grids that were comparable to post
JUDI, DAVID [Los Alamos National Laboratory; KALYANAPU, ALFRED [Los Alamos National Laboratory; MCPHERSON, TIMOTHY [Los Alamos National Laboratory; BERSCHEID, ALAN [Los Alamos National Laboratory
A simulation environment is being developed for the prediction and analysis of the inundation consequences for infrastructure systems from extreme flood events. This decision support architecture includes a GIS-based environment for model input development, simulation integration tools for meteorological, hydrologic, and infrastructure system models and damage assessment tools for infrastructure systems. The GIS-based environment processes digital elevation models (30-m from the USGS), land use/cover (30-m NLCD), stream networks from the National Hydrography Dataset (NHD) and soils data from the NRCS (STATSGO) to create stream network, subbasins, and cross-section shapefiles for drainage basins selected for analysis. Rainfall predictions are made by a numerical weather model and ingested in gridded format into the simulation environment. Runoff hydrographs are estimated using Green-Ampt infiltration excess runoff prediction and a 1D diffusive wave overland flow routing approach. The hydrographs are fed into the stream network and integrated in a dynamic wave routing module using the EPA's Storm Water Management Model (SWMM) to predict flood depth. The flood depths are then transformed into inundation maps and exported for damage assessment. Hydrologic/hydraulic results are presented for Tropical Storm Allison.
Brandt, Mary; Brown, Clive; Burkhart, Joe; Burton, Nancy; Cox-Ganser, Jean; Damon, Scott; Falk, Henry; Fridkin, Scott; Garbe, Paul; McGeehin, Mike; Morgan, Juliette; Page, Elena; Rao, Carol; Redd, Stephen; Sinks, Tom; Trout, Douglas; Wallingford, Kenneth; Warnock, David; Weissman, David
Extensive water damage after major hurricanes and floods increases the likelihood of mold contamination in buildings. This report provides information on how to limit exposure to mold and how to identify and prevent mold-related health effects. Where uncertainties in scientific knowledge exist, practical applications designed to be protective of a person's health are presented. Evidence is included about assessing exposure, clean-up and prevention, personal protective equipment, health effects, and public health strategies and recommendations. The recommendations assume that, in the aftermath of major hurricanes or floods, buildings wet for health effects in susceptible persons regardless of the type of mold or the extent of contamination. For the majority of persons, undisturbed mold is not a substantial health hazard. Mold is a greater hazard for persons with conditions such as impaired host defenses or mold allergies. To prevent exposure that could result in adverse health effects from disturbed mold, persons should 1) avoid areas where mold contamination is obvious; 2) use environmental controls; 3) use personal protective equipment; and 4) keep hands, skin, and clothing clean and free from mold-contaminated dust. Clinical evaluation of suspected mold-related illness should follow conventional clinical guidelines. In addition, in the aftermath of extensive flooding, health-care providers should be watchful for unusual mold-related diseases. The development of a public health surveillance strategy among persons repopulating areas after extensive flooding is recommended to assess potential health effects and the effectiveness of prevention efforts. Such a surveillance program will help CDC and state and local public health officials refine the guidelines for exposure avoidance, personal protection, and clean-up and assist health departments to identify unrecognized hazards.
Rengers, Francis K.; McGuire, Luke; Kean, Jason W.; Staley, Dennis M.; Hobley, D.E.J
Debris flows are a typical hazard on steep slopes after wildfire, but unlike debris flows that mobilize from landslides, most post-wildfire debris flows are generated from water runoff. The majority of existing debris-flow modeling has focused on landslide-triggered debris flows. In this study we explore the potential for using process-based rainfall-runoff models to simulate the timing of water flow and runoff-generated debris flows in recently burned areas. Two different spatially distributed hydrologic models with differing levels of complexity were used: the full shallow water equations and the kinematic wave approximation. Model parameter values were calibrated in two different watersheds, spanning two orders of magnitude in drainage area. These watersheds were affected by the 2009 Station Fire in the San Gabriel Mountains, CA, USA. Input data for the numerical models were constrained by time series of soil moisture, flow stage, and rainfall collected at field sites, as well as high-resolution lidar-derived digital elevation models. The calibrated parameters were used to model a third watershed in the burn area, and the results show a good match with observed timing of flow peaks. The calibrated roughness parameter (Manning's $n$) was generally higher when using the kinematic wave approximation relative to the shallow water equations, and decreased with increasing spatial scale. The calibrated effective watershed hydraulic conductivity was low for both models, even for storms occurring several months after the fire, suggesting that wildfire-induced changes to soil-water infiltration were retained throughout that time. Overall the two model simulations were quite similar suggesting that a kinematic wave model, which is simpler and more computationally efficient, is a suitable approach for predicting flood and debris flow timing in steep, burned watersheds.
E. Yu. Krasilnikov
Full Text Available Tropical cyclones and storms, hurricanes, powerful thunderclouds, which generate tornadoes, destructive extratropical cyclones, which result in catastrophic floods, are the powerful cloud systems that contain huge amount of water. According to the hypothesis argued in this paper, an electric field coupled with powerful clouds and electric forces play a cardinal role in supporting this huge mass of water at a high altitude in the troposphere and in the instability of powerful clouds sometimes during rather a long time duration. Based on this hypothesis, a highly effective method of volume electric charge neutralization of powerful clouds is proposed. It results in the decrease in an electric field, a sudden increase in precipitation, and subsequent degradation of powerful clouds. This method, based on the natural phenomenon, ensures the prevention of the intensification of tropical and extratropical cyclones and their transition to the storm and hurricane (typhoon stages, which makes it possible to avoid catastrophic floods. It also ensures the suppression of severe thunderclouds, which, in turn, eliminates the development of dangerous thunderstorms and the possibility of the emergence and intensification of tornadoes.
Lindquist, E.; Pierce, J. L.
Numerous frameworks and models exist for understanding the dynamics of the public policy process. A policy network approach considers how and why stakeholders and interests pay attention to and engage in policy problems, such as flood control or developing resilient and fire resistant landscapes. Variables considered in this approach include what the relationships are between these stakeholders, how they influence the process and outcomes, communication patterns within and between policy networks, and how networks change as a result of new information, science, or public interest and involvement with the problem. This approach is useful in understanding the creation of natural hazards policy as new information or situations, such as projected climate change impacts, influence and disrupt the policy process and networks. Two significant natural hazard policy networks exist in the semi-arid Treasure Valley region of Southwest Idaho, which includes the capitol city of Boise and the surrounding metropolitan area. Boise is situated along the Boise River and adjacent to steep foothills; this physiographic setting makes Boise vulnerable to both wildfires at the wildland-urban interface (WUI) and flooding. Both of these natural hazards have devastated the community in the past and floods and fires are projected to occur with more frequency in the future as a result of projected climate change impacts in the region. While both hazards are fairly well defined problems, there are stark differences lending themselves to comparisons across their respective networks. The WUI wildfire network is large and well developed, includes stakeholders from all levels of government, the private sector and property owner organizations, has well defined objectives, and conducts promotional and educational activities as part of its interaction with the public in order to increase awareness and garner support for its policies. The flood control policy network, however, is less defined
Rengers, F. K.; McGuire, L. A.; Kean, J. W.; Staley, D. M.; Hobley, D. E. J.
Debris flows are a typical hazard on steep slopes after wildfire, but unlike debris flows that mobilize from landslides, most postwildfire debris flows are generated from water runoff. The majority of existing debris flow modeling has focused on landslide-triggered debris flows. In this study we explore the potential for using process-based rainfall-runoff models to simulate the timing of water flow and runoff-generated debris flows in recently burned areas. Two different spatially distributed hydrologic models with differing levels of complexity were used: the full shallow water equations and the kinematic wave approximation. Model parameter values were calibrated in two different watersheds, spanning two orders of magnitude in drainage area. These watersheds were affected by the 2009 Station Fire in the San Gabriel Mountains, CA, USA. Input data for the numerical models were constrained by time series of soil moisture, flow stage, and rainfall collected at field sites, as well as high-resolution lidar-derived digital elevation models. The calibrated parameters were used to model a third watershed in the burn area, and the results show a good match with observed timing of flow peaks. The calibrated roughness parameter (Manning's n) was generally higher when using the kinematic wave approximation relative to the shallow water equations, and decreased with increasing spatial scale. The calibrated effective watershed hydraulic conductivity was low for both models, even for storms occurring several months after the fire, suggesting that wildfire-induced changes to soil-water infiltration were retained throughout that time. Overall, the two model simulations were quite similar suggesting that a kinematic wave model, which is simpler and more computationally efficient, is a suitable approach for predicting flood and debris flow timing in steep, burned watersheds.
Shen, X.; Lazin, R.; Anagnostou, E. N.; Wanik, D. W.; Brakenridge, G. R.
Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR) observations is the only reliable remote sensing data source to map flood inundation during severe weather events. Unfortunately, since state-of-art data processing algorithms cannot meet the automation and quality standard of a near-real-time (NRT) system, quality controlled inundation mapping by SAR currently depends heavily on manual processing, which limits our capability to quickly issue flood inundation maps at global scale. Specifically, most SAR-based inundation mapping algorithms are not fully automated, while those that are automated exhibit severe over- and/or under-detection errors that limit their potential. These detection errors are primarily caused by the strong overlap among the SAR backscattering probability density functions (PDF) of different land cover types. In this study, we tested a newly developed NRT SAR-based inundation mapping system, named Radar Produced Inundation Diary (RAPID), using Sentinel-1 dual polarized SAR data over recent flood events caused by Hurricanes Harvey, Irma, and Maria (2017). The system consists of 1) self-optimized multi-threshold classification, 2) over-detection removal using land-cover information and change detection, 3) under-detection compensation, and 4) machine-learning based correction. Algorithm details are introduced in another poster, H53J-1603. Good agreements were obtained by comparing the result from RAPID with visual interpretation of SAR images and manual processing from Dartmouth Flood Observatory (DFO) (See Figure 1). Specifically, the over- and under-detections that is typically noted in automated methods is significantly reduced to negligible levels. This performance indicates that RAPID can address the automation and accuracy issues of current state-of-art algorithms and has the potential to apply operationally on a number of satellite SAR missions, such as SWOT, ALOS, Sentinel etc. RAPID data can support many applications such as rapid assessment of damage
Galantowicz, J. F.; Picton, J.; Root, B.
Passive microwave remote sensing can provided a distinct perspective on flood events by virtue of wide sensor fields of view, frequent observations from multiple satellites, and sensitivity through clouds and vegetation. During Hurricanes Harvey and Irma, we used AMSR2 (Advanced Microwave Scanning Radiometer 2, JAXA) data to map flood extents starting from the first post-storm rain-free sensor passes. Our standard flood mapping algorithm (FloodScan) derives flooded fraction from 22-km microwave data (AMSR2 or NASA's GMI) in near real time and downscales it to 90-m resolution using a database built from topography, hydrology, and Global Surface Water Explorer data and normalized to microwave data footprint shapes. During Harvey and Irma we tested experimental versions of the algorithm designed to map the maximum post-storm flood extent rapidly and made a variety of map products available immediately for use in storm monitoring and response. The maps have several unique features including spanning the entire storm-affected area and providing multiple post-storm updates as flood water shifted and receded. From the daily maps we derived secondary products such as flood duration, maximum flood extent (Figure 1), and flood depth. In this presentation, we describe flood extent evolution, maximum extent, and local details as detected by the FloodScan algorithm in the wake of Harvey and Irma. We compare FloodScan results to other available flood mapping resources, note observed shortcomings, and describe improvements made in response. We also discuss how best-estimate maps could be updated in near real time by merging FloodScan products and data from other remote sensing systems and hydrological models.
Plumlee, Geoffrey S.; Meeker, Gregory P.; Lovelace, John K.; Rosenbauer, Robert J.; Lamothe, Paul J.; Furlong, Edward T.; Demas, Charles R.
Introduction: The flooding in the greater New Orleans area that resulted from Hurricanes Katrina and Rita in September, 2005, left behind accumulations of sediments up to many centimeters thick on streets, lawns, parking lots, and other flat surfaces. These flood sediment deposits have been the focus of extensive study by the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and Louisiana Department of Environmental Quality (LDEQ) due to concerns that the sediments may contain elevated levels of heavy metals, organic contaminants, and microbes. The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) is characterizing a limited number of flood sediment samples that were collected on September 15-16 and October 6-7, 2005, from the greater New Orleans area by personnel from the USGS Louisiana Water Science Center in Baton Rouge. Small samples (< 3 pints each) of wet to dry flood sediment were collected from 11 localities around downtown New Orleans on September 15, 2005, and two large samples (40 pints each) of wet flood sediment were collected from the Chalmette area on September 16. Twelve additional samples (8-10 pints each) were collected from New Orleans, Slidell, Rigolets, and Violet on October 6 and 7. The USGS characterization studies of these flood sediments are designed to produce data and interpretations regarding how the sediments and any contained contaminants may respond to environmental processes. This information will be of use to cleanup managers and DoI/USGS scientists assessing environmental impacts of the hurricanes and subsequent cleanup activities.
Full Text Available During Hurricane Irma’s passage over Florida in September 2017, many sections of the state experienced heavy rain and sequent flooding. In order to drain water out of potential flooding zones and assess property damage, it is important to map the extent and magnitude of the flooded areas at various stages of the storm. We use Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR and Interferometric SAR (InSAR observations, acquired by Sentinel-1 before, during and after the hurricane passage, which enable us to evaluate surface condition during different stages of the hurricane. This study uses multi-temporal images acquired under dry condition before the hurricane to constrain the background backscattering signature. Flooded areas are detected when the backscattering during the hurricane is statistically significantly different from the average dry conditions. The detected changes can be either an increase or decrease of the backscattering, which depends on the scattering characteristics of the surface. In addition, water level change information in Palmdale, South Florida is extracted from an interferogram with the aid of a local water gauge as the reference. The results of our flooding analysis revealed that the majority of the study area in South Florida was flooded during Hurricane Irma.
Musser, Jonathan W.; Watson, Kara M.; Gotvald, Anthony J.
The passage of Hurricane Matthew through central and eastern North Carolina during October 7–9, 2016, brought heavy rainfall, which resulted in major flooding. More than 15 inches of rain was recorded in some areas. More than 600 roads were closed, including Interstates 95 and 40, and nearly 99,000 structures were affected by floodwaters. Immediately following the flooding, the U.S. Geological Survey documented 267 high-water marks, of which 254 were surveyed. North Carolina Emergency Management documented and surveyed 353 high-water marks. Using a subset of these highwater marks, six flood-inundation maps were created for hard-hit communities. Digital datasets of the inundation areas, study reach boundary, and water-depth rasters are available for download. In addition, peak gage-height data, peak streamflow data, and annual exceedance probabilities (in percent) were determined for 24 U.S. Geological Survey streamgages located near the heavily flooded communities.
Zhang, B.; Koirala, R.; Oliver-Cabrera, T.; Wdowinski, S.; Osmanoglu, B.
Hurricanes can cause winds, rainfall and storm surge, all of which could result in flooding. Between August and September 2017, Hurricanes Harvey, Irma and Maria made landfall over Texas, Florida and Puerto Rico causing destruction and damages. Flood mapping is important for water management and to estimate risks and property damage. Though water gauges are able to monitor water levels, they are normally distributed sparsely. To map flooding products of these extreme events, we use Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR) observations acquired by the European satellite constellation Sentinel-1. We obtained two acquisitions from before each flooding event, a single acquisition during the hurricane, and two after each event, a total of five acquisitions. We use both amplitude and phase observations to map extent and magnitude of flooding respectively. To map flooding extents, we use amplitude images from before, after and if possible during the hurricane pass. A calibration is used to convert the image raw data to backscatter coefficient, termed sigma nought. We generate a composite of the two image layers using red and green bands to show the change of sigma nought between acquisitions, which directly reflects the extent of flooding. Because inundation can result with either an increase or decrease of sigma nought values depending on the surface scattering characteristics, we map flooded areas in location where sigma nought changes were above a detection threshold. To study magnitude of flooding we study Interferometric Synthetic Aperture Radar (InSAR) phase changes. Changes in the water level can be detected by the radar when the signal is reflected away from water surface and bounces again by another object (e.g. trees and/or buildings) known as double bounce phase. To generate meaningful interferograms, we compare phase information with the nearest water gauge records to verify our results. Preliminary results show that the three hurricanes caused flooding condition over
Baish, A. S.; Vivoni, E. R.; Payan, J. G.; Robles-Morua, A.; Basile, G. M.
A distributed hydrologic model can help bring consensus among diverse stakeholders in regional flood planning by producing quantifiable sets of alternative futures. This value is acute in areas with high uncertainties in hydrologic conditions and sparse observations. In this study, we conduct an application of the Triangulated Irregular Network (TIN)-based Real-time Integrated Basin Simulator (tRIBS) in the Santa Catarina basin of Nuevo Leon, Mexico, where Hurricane Alex in July 2010 led to catastrophic flooding of the capital city of Monterrey. Distributed model simulations utilize best-available information on the regional topography, land cover, and soils obtained from Mexican government agencies or analysis of remotely-sensed imagery from MODIS and ASTER. Furthermore, we developed meteorological forcing for the flood event based on multiple data sources, including three local gauge networks, satellite-based estimates from TRMM and PERSIANN, and the North American Land Data Assimilation System (NLDAS). Remotely-sensed data allowed us to quantify rainfall distributions in the upland, rural portions of the Santa Catarina that are sparsely populated and ungauged. Rural areas had significant contributions to the flood event and as a result were considered by stakeholders for flood control measures, including new reservoirs and upland vegetation management. Participatory modeling workshops with the stakeholders revealed a disconnect between urban and rural populations in regard to understanding the hydrologic conditions of the flood event and the effectiveness of existing and potential flood control measures. Despite these challenges, the use of the distributed flood forecasts developed within this participatory framework facilitated building consensus among diverse stakeholders and exploring alternative futures in the basin.
Nagai, H.; Ohki, M.; Abe, T.
Urgent crisis response for a hurricane-induced flood needs urgent providing of a flood map covering a broad region. However, there is no standard threshold values for automatic flood identification from pre-and-post images obtained by satellite-based synthetic aperture radars (SARs). This problem could hamper prompt data providing for operational uses. Furthermore, one pre-flood SAR image does not always represent potential water surfaces and river flows especially in tropical flat lands which are greatly influenced by seasonal precipitation cycle. We are, therefore, developing a new method of flood mapping using PALSAR-2, an L-band SAR, which is less affected by temporal surface changes. Specifically, a mean-value image and a standard-deviation image are calculated from a series of pre-flood SAR images. It is combined with a post-flood SAR image to obtain normalized backscatter amplitude difference (NoBADi), with which a difference between a post-flood image and a mean-value image is divided by a standard-deviation image to emphasize anomalous water extents. Flooding areas are then automatically obtained from the NoBADi images as lower-value pixels avoiding potential water surfaces. We applied this method to PALSAR-2 images acquired on Sept. 8, 10, and 12, 2017, covering flooding areas in a central region of Dominican Republic and west Florida, the U.S. affected by Hurricane Irma. The output flooding outlines are validated with flooding areas manually delineated from high-resolution optical satellite images, resulting in higher consistency and less uncertainty than previous methods (i.e., a simple pre-and-post flood difference and pre-and-post coherence changes). The NoBADi method has a great potential to obtain a reliable flood map for future flood hazards, not hampered by cloud cover, seasonal surface changes, and "casual" thresholds in the flood identification process.
Moody, John A.; Ebel, Brian A.
A catastrophic wildfire in the foothills of the Rocky Mountains near Boulder, Colorado provided a unique opportunity to investigate soil conditions immediately after a wildfire and before alteration by rainfall. Measurements of near-surface (θ; and matric suction, ψ), rainfall, and wind velocity were started 8 days after the wildfire began. These measurements established that hyper-dryconditions (θ 3 cm-3; ψ > ~ 3 x 105 cm) existed and provided an in-situ retention curve for these conditions. These conditions exacerbate the effects of water repellency (natural and fire-induced) and limit the effectiveness of capillarity and gravity driven infiltration into fire-affected soils. The important consequence is that given hyper-dryconditions, the critical rewetting process before the first rain is restricted to the diffusion–adsorption of water-vapor. This process typically has a time scale of days to weeks (especially when the hydrologic effects of the ash layer are included) that is longer than the typical time scale (minutes to hours) of some rainstorms, such that under hyper-dryconditions essentially no rain infiltrates. The existence of hyper-dryconditions provides insight into why, frequently during the first rain storm after a wildfire, nearly all rainfall becomes runoff causing extremefloods and debris flows.
Sachs, M. K.; Yoder, M. R.; Turcotte, D. L.; Rundle, J. B.; Malamud, B. D.
Extreme events that change global society have been characterized as black swans. The frequency-size distributions of many natural phenomena are often well approximated by power-law (fractal) distributions. An important question is whether the probability of extreme events can be estimated by extrapolating the power-law distributions. Events that exceed these extrapolations have been characterized as dragon-kings. In this paper we consider extreme events for earthquakes, volcanic eruptions, wildfires, landslides and floods. We also consider the extreme event behavior of three models that exhibit self-organized criticality (SOC): the slider-block, forest-fire, and sand-pile models. Since extrapolations using power-laws are widely used in probabilistic hazard assessment, the occurrence of dragon-king events have important practical implications.
Nghiem, S. V.; Brakenridge, G. R.; Nguyen, D. T.
Hurricane Harvey inflicted historical catastrophic flooding across extensive regions around Houston and southeast Texas after making landfall on 25 August 2017. The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) requested urgent supports for flood mapping and monitoring in an emergency response to the extreme flood situation. An innovative satellite remote sensing method, called the Depolarization Reduction Algorithm for Global Observations of inundatioN (DRAGON), has been developed and implemented for use with Sentinel synthetic aperture radar (SAR) satellite data at a resolution of 10 meters to identify, map, and monitor inundation including pre-existing water bodies and newly flooded areas. Results from this new method are hydrologically consistent and have been verified with known surface waters (e.g., coastal ocean, rivers, lakes, reservoirs, etc.), with clear-sky high-resolution WorldView images (where waves can be seen on surface water in inundated areas within a small spatial coverage), and with other flood maps from the consortium of Global Flood Partnership derived from multiple satellite datasets (including clear-sky Landsat and MODIS at lower resolutions). Figure 1 is a high-resolution (4K UHD) image of a composite inundation map for the region around Rosharon (in Brazoria County, south of Houston, Texas). This composite inundation map reveals extensive flooding on 29 August 2017 (four days after Hurricane Harvey made landfall), and the inundation was still persistent in most of the west and south of Rosharon one week later (5 September 2017) while flooding was reduced in the east of Rosharon. Hurricane Irma brought flooding to a number of areas in Florida. As of 10 September 2017, Sentinel SAR flood maps reveal inundation in the Florida Panhandle and over lowland surfaces on several islands in the Florida Keys. However, Sentinel SAR results indicate that flooding along the Florida coast was not extreme despite Irma was a Category-5 hurricane that might
Hurricane Harvey Riverine Flooding: Part 2: Integration of Heterogeneous Earth Observation Data for Comparative Analysis with High-Resolution Inundation Boundaries Reconstructed from Flood2D-GPU Model
Jackson, C.; Sava, E.; Cervone, G.
Hurricane Harvey has been noted as the wettest cyclone on record for the US as well as the most destructive (so far) for the 2017 hurricane season. An entire year worth of rainfall occurred over the course of a few days. The city of Houston was greatly impacted as the storm lingered over the city for five days, causing a record-breaking 50+ inches of rain as well as severe damage from flooding. Flood model simulations were performed to reconstruct the event in order to better understand, assess, and predict flooding dynamics for the future. Additionally, number of remote sensing platforms, and on ground instruments that provide near real-time data have also been used for flood identification, monitoring, and damage assessment. Although both flood models and remote sensing techniques are able to identify inundated areas, rapid and accurate flood prediction at a high spatio-temporal resolution remains a challenge. Thus a methodological approach which fuses the two techniques can help to better validate what is being modeled and observed. Recent advancements in data fusion techniques of remote sensing with near real time heterogeneous datasets have allowed emergency responders to more efficiently extract increasingly precise and relevant knowledge from the available information. In this work the use of multiple sources of contributed data, coupled with remotely sensed and open source geospatial datasets is demonstrated to generate an understanding of potential damage assessment for the floods after Hurricane Harvey in Harris County, Texas. The feasibility of integrating multiple sources at different temporal and spatial resolutions into hydrodynamic models for flood inundation simulations is assessed. Furthermore the contributed datasets are compared against a reconstructed flood extent generated from the Flood2D-GPU model.
In this paper, I discuss why the Dutch culture, although highly technological, remains vulnerable to flooding, with no apparent choice except to continue with its historically developed system for flood risk management. I show that this vulnerability is socially constructed. It has arisen as a
Noh, S. J.; Lee, J. H.; Lee, S.; Zhang, Y.; Seo, D. J.
Hurricane Harvey was one of the most extreme weather events in Texas history and left significant damages in the Houston and adjoining coastal areas. To understand better the relative impact to urban flooding of extreme amount and spatial extent of rainfall, unique geography, land use and storm surge, high-resolution water modeling is necessary such that natural and man-made components are fully resolved. In this presentation, we reconstruct spatiotemporal evolution of inundation during Hurricane Harvey using hyper-resolution modeling and quantitative image reanalysis. The two-dimensional urban flood model used is based on dynamic wave approximation and 10 m-resolution terrain data, and is forced by the radar-based multisensor quantitative precipitation estimates. The model domain includes Buffalo, Brays, Greens and White Oak Bayous in Houston. The model is simulated using hybrid parallel computing. To evaluate dynamic inundation mapping, we combine various qualitative crowdsourced images and video footages with LiDAR-based terrain data.
Tebbens, S. F.; Barton, C. C.; Scott, B. E.
Traditionally, the size of natural disaster events such as hurricanes, earthquakes, tornadoes, and floods is measured in terms of wind speed (m/sec), energy released (ergs), or discharge (m3/sec) rather than by economic loss or fatalities. Economic loss and fatalities from natural disasters result from the intersection of the human infrastructure and population with the size of the natural event. This study investigates the size versus cumulative number distribution of individual natural disaster events for several disaster types in the United States. Economic losses are adjusted for inflation to 2014 USD. The cumulative number divided by the time over which the data ranges for each disaster type is the basis for making probabilistic forecasts in terms of the number of events greater than a given size per year and, its inverse, return time. Such forecasts are of interest to insurers/re-insurers, meteorologists, seismologists, government planners, and response agencies. Plots of size versus cumulative number distributions per year for economic loss and fatalities are well fit by power scaling functions of the form p(x) = Cx-β; where, p(x) is the cumulative number of events with size equal to and greater than size x, C is a constant, the activity level, x is the event size, and β is the scaling exponent. Economic loss and fatalities due to hurricanes, earthquakes, tornadoes, and floods are well fit by power functions over one to five orders of magnitude in size. Economic losses for hurricanes and tornadoes have greater scaling exponents, β = 1.1 and 0.9 respectively, whereas earthquakes and floods have smaller scaling exponents, β = 0.4 and 0.6 respectively. Fatalities for tornadoes and floods have greater scaling exponents, β = 1.5 and 1.7 respectively, whereas hurricanes and earthquakes have smaller scaling exponents, β = 0.4 and 0.7 respectively. The scaling exponents can be used to make probabilistic forecasts for time windows ranging from 1 to 1000 years
Lilly, M. R.; Feditova, A.; Levine, K.; Giardino, J. R.
The Harris County Flood Control District has an impressive amount of information available for the public related to flood management and response. During Hurricane Harvey, this information was used by the authors to help address daily questions from family and friends living in the Houston area. Common near-real-time reporting data included precipitation and water levels. Maps included locations of data stations, stream or bayou conditions (in bank, out of bank) and watershed or drainage boundaries. In general, the data station reporting and online information was updating well throughout the hurricane and post-flooding period. Only a few of the data reporting stations had problems with water level sensor measurements. The overall information was helpful to hydrologists and floodplain managers. The online information could not easily answer all common questions residents may have during a flood event. Some of the more common questions were how to use the water-level information to know the potential extent of flooding and relative location of flooding to the location of residents. To help address the questions raised during the flooding on how to use the available water level data, we used Google Earth to get lot and intersection locations to help show the relative differences between nearby water-level stations and residences of interest. The reported resolution of the Google Earth elevation data is 1-foot. To help confirm the use of this data, we compared Google Earth approximate elevations with reported Harris County Floodplain Reference Mark individual reports. This method helped verify we could use the Google Earth information for approximate comparisons. We also faced questions on what routes to take if evacuation was needed, and where to go to get to higher ground elevations. Google Earth again provided a helpful and easy to use interface to look at road and intersection elevations and develop suggested routes for family and friends to take to avoid low
Saleh, F.; Ramaswamy, V.; Georgas, N.; Blumberg, A. F.; Wang, Y.
Advances in computational resources and modeling techniques are opening the path to effectively integrate existing complex models. In the context of flood prediction, recent extreme events have demonstrated the importance of integrating components of the hydrosystem to better represent the interactions amongst different physical processes and phenomena. As such, there is a pressing need to develop holistic and cross-disciplinary modeling frameworks that effectively integrate existing models and better represent the operative dynamics. This work presents a novel Hydrologic-Hydraulic-Hydrodynamic Ensemble (H3E) flood prediction framework that operationally integrates existing predictive models representing coastal (New York Harbor Observing and Prediction System, NYHOPS), hydrologic (US Army Corps of Engineers Hydrologic Modeling System, HEC-HMS) and hydraulic (2-dimensional River Analysis System, HEC-RAS) components. The state-of-the-art framework is forced with 125 ensemble meteorological inputs from numerical weather prediction models including the Global Ensemble Forecast System, the European Centre for Medium-Range Weather Forecasts (ECMWF), the Canadian Meteorological Centre (CMC), the Short Range Ensemble Forecast (SREF) and the North American Mesoscale Forecast System (NAM). The framework produces, within a 96-hour forecast horizon, on-the-fly Google Earth flood maps that provide critical information for decision makers and emergency preparedness managers. The utility of the framework was demonstrated by retrospectively forecasting an extreme flood event, hurricane Sandy in the Passaic and Hackensack watersheds (New Jersey, USA). Hurricane Sandy caused significant damage to a number of critical facilities in this area including the New Jersey Transit's main storage and maintenance facility. The results of this work demonstrate that ensemble based frameworks provide improved flood predictions and useful information about associated uncertainties, thus
Miller, M. M.; Shirzaei, M.
Category-4 Hurricane Harvey had devastating socioeconomic impacts to Houston, with flooding far past the 100-year flood zones published by FEMA. In recent decades, frequency and intensity of coastal flooding are escalating, correlated with sea level rise (SLR). Moreover, Local land subsidence (LLS) due to groundwater and hydrocarbon extraction and natural compaction changes surface elevation and slope, potentially altering drainage patterns. GPS data show a mm broad co-cyclonic subsidence due to elastic loading from the water mass measured by GPS, which is inverted to solve for the total fluid volume of 2.73x1010 m3. We additionally investigate the joint impact of an SLR and pre-cyclonic LLS on the flooding of Houston-Galveston during Hurricane Harvey. We examine vertical land motion within North American Vertical Datum 2012 for the period 2007 until the cyclone by investigating SAR imaged acquired by ALOS and Sentinel-1A/B radar satellites combined with GPS data. We find patchy, LLS bowls resulting in sinks where floodwater can collect. We map the flooding extent by comparing amplitudes of Sentinal1-A/B pixels' backscattered radar signal from pre- and post-Harvey acquisitions and estimate 782 km2 are submerged within the area of 3478 km2 of pixels covered by Sentinel frame. Comparing with the LLS map, 89% of the flooded pixels exhibit -3 mm/yr or greater vertical motion. Flooding attributed to the storm surge is determined with high-resolution LiDAR digital elevation models (DEM) and a 0.75 m storm tide inundation model, which engulfs only 195 km2 and nearby the shorelines. We estimate future inundation hazard by combining LiDAR DEMs with our InSAR derived subsidence map, projecting LLS rates forward 100 years, and modeling projected SLR from 0.4 to 1.2 meters. Were subsidence to continue unabated, the total flooded area is 281 km2 with a 0.4 m and 394 km2 with a 1.2 m SLR. Next, we add a modest storm tide (0.752 m), which increases the flooded area to 389 - 480
Justin A. Schulte
Full Text Available In this paper, it is proposed that coastal flood ensemble forecasts be partitioned into sub-ensemble forecasts using cluster analysis in order to produce representative statistics and to measure forecast uncertainty arising from the presence of clusters. After clustering the ensemble members, the ability to predict the cluster into which the observation will fall can be measured using a cluster skill score. Additional sub-ensemble and composite skill scores are proposed for assessing the forecast skill of a clustered ensemble forecast. A recently proposed method for statistically increasing the number of ensemble members is used to improve sub-ensemble probabilistic estimates. Through the application of the proposed methodology to Sandy coastal flood reforecasts, it is demonstrated that statistics computed using only ensemble members belonging to a specific cluster are more representative than those computed using all ensemble members simultaneously. A cluster skill-cluster uncertainty index relationship is identified, which is the cluster analog of the documented spread-skill relationship. Two sub-ensemble skill scores are shown to be positively correlated with cluster forecast skill, suggesting that skillfully forecasting the cluster into which the observation will fall is important to overall forecast skill. The identified relationships also suggest that the number of ensemble members within in each cluster can be used as guidance for assessing the potential for forecast error. The inevitable existence of ensemble member clusters in tidally dominated total water level prediction systems suggests that clustering is a necessary post-processing step for producing representative and skillful total water level forecasts.
Rengers, Francis K.; McGuire, Luke; Ebel, Brian A.; Tucker, G. E.
The transition of a colluvial hollow to a fluvial channel with discrete steps was observed after two landscape-scale disturbances. The first disturbance, a high-severity wildfire, changed the catchment hydrology to favor overland flow, which incised a colluvial hollow, creating a channel in the same location. This incised channel became armored with cobbles and boulders following repeated post-wildfire overland flow events. Three years after the fire, a record rainstorm produced regional flooding and generated sufficient fluvial erosion and sorting to produce a fluvial channel with periodically spaced steps. An analysis of the step spacing shows that after the flood, newly formed steps retained a similar spacing to the topographic roughness spacing in the original colluvial hollow (prior to channelization). This suggests that despite a distinct change in channel form roughness and bedform morphology, the endogenous roughness periodicity was conserved. Variations in sediment erodibility helped to create the emergent steps as the largest particles ( >D84) remained immobile, becoming step features, and downstream soil was easily winnowed away.
Rengers, F. K.; McGuire, L. A.; Ebel, B. A.; Tucker, G. E.
The transition of a colluvial hollow to a fluvial channel with discrete steps was observed after two landscape-scale disturbances. The first disturbance, a high-severity wildfire, changed the catchment hydrology to favor overland flow, which incised a colluvial hollow, creating a channel in the same location. This incised channel became armored with cobbles and boulders following repeated post-wildfire overland flow events. Three years after the fire, a record rainstorm produced regional flooding and generated sufficient fluvial erosion and sorting to produce a fluvial channel with periodically spaced steps. An analysis of the step spacing shows that after the flood, newly formed steps retained a similar spacing to the topographic roughness spacing in the original colluvial hollow (prior to channelization). This suggests that despite a distinct change in channel form roughness and bedform morphology, the endogenous roughness periodicity was conserved. Variations in sediment erodibility helped to create the emergent steps as the largest particles (>D84) remained immobile, becoming step features, and downstream soil was easily winnowed away.
Zhao, G; Yin, G; Inamdar, A A; Luo, J; Zhang, N; Yang, I; Buckley, B; Bennett, J W
Superstorm Sandy provided an opportunity to study filamentous fungi (molds) associated with winter storm damage. We collected 36 morphologically distinct fungal isolates from flooded buildings. By combining traditional morphological and cultural characters with an analysis of ITS sequences (the fungal DNA barcode), we identified 24 fungal species that belong to eight genera: Penicillium (11 species), Fusarium (four species), Aspergillus (three species), Trichoderma (two species), and one species each of Metarhizium, Mucor, Pestalotiopsis, and Umbelopsis. Then, we used a Drosophila larval assay to assess possible toxicity of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) emitted by these molds. When cultured in a shared atmosphere with growing cultures of molds isolated after Hurricane Sandy, larval toxicity ranged from 15 to 80%. VOCs from Aspergillus niger 129B were the most toxic yielding 80% mortality to Drosophila after 12 days. The VOCs from Trichoderma longibrachiatum 117, Mucor racemosus 138a, and Metarhizium anisopliae 124 were relatively non-toxigenic. A preliminary analysis of VOCs was conducted using solid-phase microextraction-gas chromatography-mass spectrometry from two of the most toxic, two of the least toxic, and two species of intermediate toxicity. The more toxic molds produced higher concentrations of 1-octen-3-ol, 3-octanone, 3-octanol, 2-octen-1-ol, and 2-nonanone; while the less toxic molds produced more 3-methyl-1-butanol and 2-methyl-1-propanol, or an overall lower amount of volatiles. Our data support the hypothesis that at certain concentrations, some VOCs emitted by indoor molds are toxigenic. © 2016 John Wiley & Sons A/S. Published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd.
Renschler, Chris S.; Wang, Zhihao
In light of climate and land use change, stakeholders around the world are interested in assessing historic and likely future flood dynamics and flood extents for decision-making in watersheds with dams as well as limited availability of stream gages and costly technical resources. This research evaluates an assessment and communication approach of combining GIS, hydraulic modeling based on latest remote sensing and topographic imagery by comparing the results to an actual flood event and available stream gages. On August 28th 2011, floods caused by Hurricane Irene swept through a large rural area in New York State, leaving thousands of people homeless, devastating towns and cities. Damage was widespread though the estimated and actual floods inundation and associated return period were still unclear since the flooding was artificially increased by flood water release due to fear of a dam break. This research uses the stream section right below the dam between two stream gages North Blenheim and Breakabeen along Schoharie Creek as a case study site to validate the approach. The data fusion approach uses a GIS, commonly available data sources, the hydraulic model HEC-RAS as well as airborne LiDAR data that were collected two days after the flood event (Aug 30, 2011). The aerial imagery of the airborne survey depicts a low flow event as well as the evidence of the record flood such as debris and other signs of damage to validate the hydrologic simulation results with the available stream gauges. Model results were also compared to the official Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) flood scenarios to determine the actual flood return period of the event. The dynamic of the flood levels was then used to visualize the flood and the actual loss of the Old Blenheim Bridge using Google Sketchup. Integration of multi-source data, cross-validation and visualization provides new ways to utilize pre- and post-event remote sensing imagery and hydrologic models to better
Kochilakis, Giorgos; Poursanidis, Dimitris; Chrysoulakis, Nektarios; Varella, Vassiliki; Kotroni, Vassiliki; Eftychidis, Giorgos; Lagouvardos, Kostas; Papathanasiou, Chrysoula; Karavokyros, George; Aivazoglou, Maria; Makropoulos, Christos; Mimikou, Maria
A web-based Decision Support System, named FLIRE DSS, for combined forest fire control and planning as well as flood risk management, has been developed and is presented in this paper. State of the art tools and models have been used in order to enable Civil Protection agencies and local stakeholders to take advantage of the web based DSS without the need of local installation of complex software and their maintenance. Civil protection agencies can predict the behavior of a fire event using real time data and in such a way plan its efficient elimination. Also, during dry periods, agencies can implement "what-if" scenarios for areas that are prone to fire and thus have available plans for forest fire management in case such scenarios occur. Flood services include flood maps and flood-related warnings and become available to relevant authorities for visualization and further analysis on a daily basis. When flood warnings are issued, relevant authorities may proceed to efficient evacuation planning for the areas that are likely to flood and thus save human lives. Real-time weather data from ground stations provide the necessary inputs for the calculation of the fire model in real-time, and a high resolution weather forecast grid supports flood modeling as well as the development of "what-if" scenarios for the fire modeling. All these can be accessed by various computer sources including PC, laptop, Smartphone and tablet either by normal network connection or by using 3G and 4G cellular network. The latter is important for the accessibility of the FLIRE DSS during firefighting or rescue operations during flood events. All these methods and tools provide the end users with the necessary information to design an operational plan for the elimination of the fire events and the efficient management of the flood events in almost real time. Concluding, the FLIRE DSS can be easily transferred to other areas with similar characteristics due to its robust architecture and its
Full Text Available A web-based Decision Support System, named FLIRE DSS, for combined forest fire control and planning as well as flood risk management, has been developed and is presented in this paper. State of the art tools and models have been used in order to enable Civil Protection agencies and local stakeholders to take advantage of the web based DSS without the need of local installation of complex software and their maintenance. Civil protection agencies can predict the behavior of a fire event using real time data and in such a way plan its efficient elimination. Also, during dry periods, agencies can implement “what-if” scenarios for areas that are prone to fire and thus have available plans for forest fire management in case such scenarios occur. Flood services include flood maps and flood-related warnings and become available to relevant authorities for visualization and further analysis on a daily basis. When flood warnings are issued, relevant authorities may proceed to efficient evacuation planning for the areas that are likely to flood and thus save human lives. Real-time weather data from ground stations provide the necessary inputs for the calculation of the fire model in real-time, and a high resolution weather forecast grid supports flood modeling as well as the development of “what-if” scenarios for the fire modeling. All these can be accessed by various computer sources including PC, laptop, Smartphone and tablet either by normal network connection or by using 3G and 4G cellular network. The latter is important for the accessibility of the FLIRE DSS during firefighting or rescue operations during flood events. All these methods and tools provide the end users with the necessary information to design an operational plan for the elimination of the fire events and the efficient management of the flood events in almost real time. Concluding, the FLIRE DSS can be easily transferred to other areas with similar characteristics due to its
Chow, A. T.; Bao, S.; Zhang, H.; Tsui, M. T. K.; Ruecker, A.; Uzun, H.; Karanfil, T.
Seasonally flooded, freshwater cypress-tupelo wetlands are commonly found in coastal regions of the southeastern United States, from Texas to North Carolina. These wetlands are the main sources of dissolved organic carbon (DOC) causing yellowish tea-color like water in the coastal blackwater rivers such as Waccamaw River in South Carolina (SC). Similar to rivers in other regions, concentration of DOC is highly correlated with concentrations of total Hg (THg) and methyl Hg (MeHg) in the Waccamaw River. On October 1-4, 2015, the torrential rain caused extensive flooding in a short period in the coast of SC, resulting in a large volume of water exported from the forested wetlands into the coastal blackwater rivers. To estimate the total loadings of C and Hg mobilized and exported by floodwater, we applied a hydrological model, WRF-Hydro, to simulate the flooding event. Precipitation rate derived from radar reflectivity was used as the main meteorological forcing input, along with near surface air temperature, humidity, and wind speed, pressure and incoming shortwave and longwave radiations data from NASA's Land Data Assimilation Systems (NLDAS). A high-resolution terrain routing grid was created using the National Hydrography Dataset (NHD). Surface flow due to surface runoff, baseflow due to underground runoff, and the stream flow rate on the routing grid along rivers were modeled. We also collected water samples along the hydrograph of the flooding event in Waccamaw river and the first water samples were collected on Oct 4, 2015, representing the rising limb of the hydrograph. Since then, samples were collected daily for the first week and several times per week in the following weeks. Samples were promptly analyzed for general water chemistry, dissolved organic carbon (DOC), and total Hg (THg). We observed that concentrations of DOC and THg started to rise with the river discharge in an unsynchronized pattern, reaching the highest (32 mg/L and 7.5 ng/L, respectively
Patricia Andrews; Mark Finney; Mark Fischetti
The number of catastrophic wildfires in the U.S. has been steadily rising. The nation has spent more than $1 billion annually to suppress such fires in eight of the past 10 years. In 2005 a record 8.7 million acres burned, only to be succeeded by 9.9 million acres in 2006. And this year is off to a furious start. To a great extent, the increase in fires stems from a...
Jung, Kiju; Shavitt, Sharon; Viswanathan, Madhu; Hilbe, Joseph M
Do people judge hurricane risks in the context of gender-based expectations? We use more than six decades of death rates from US hurricanes to show that feminine-named hurricanes cause significantly more deaths than do masculine-named hurricanes. Laboratory experiments indicate that this is because hurricane names lead to gender-based expectations about severity and this, in turn, guides respondents' preparedness to take protective action. This finding indicates an unfortunate and unintended consequence of the gendered naming of hurricanes, with important implications for policymakers, media practitioners, and the general public concerning hurricane communication and preparedness.
J. C. J. H. Aerts
Full Text Available The weakening of Irene from a Category 3 hurricane to a tropical storm resulted in less damage in New York City (NYC than initially was anticipated. It is widely recognized that the storm surge and associated flooding could have been much more severe. In a recent study, we showed that a direct hit to the city from a hurricane may expose an enormous number of people to flooding. A major hurricane has the potential to cause large-scale damage in NYC. The city's resilience to flooding can be increased by improving and integrating flood insurance, flood zoning, and building code policies.
... evacuation decision-making. To accomplish this, the study provides information on the extent and severity of potential flooding from hurricanes, the associated vulnerable population, capacities of existing public shelters...
National Aeronautics and Space Administration — This Reel Includes the Following Sections TRT 50:10 Hurricane Overviews 1:02; Hurricane Arthur 15:07; Cyclone Pam 19:48; Typhoon Hagupit 21:27; Hurricane Bertha...
Department of Homeland Security — Hurricane Evacuation Routes in the United States A hurricane evacuation route is a designated route used to direct traffic inland in case of a hurricane threat. This...
Havel, Aaron; Tasdighi, Ali; Arabi, Mazdak
This study aims to understand the hydrologic responses to wildfires in mountainous regions at various spatial scales. The Soil and Water Assessment Tool (SWAT) was used to evaluate the hydrologic responses of the upper Cache la Poudre Watershed in Colorado to the 2012 High Park and Hewlett wildfire events. A baseline SWAT model was established to simulate the hydrology of the study area between the years 2000 and 2014. A procedure involving land use and curve number updating was implemented to assess the effects of wildfires. Application of the proposed procedure provides the ability to simulate the hydrologic response to wildfires seamlessly through mimicking the dynamic of the changes due to wildfires. The wildfire effects on curve numbers were determined comparing the probability distribution of curve numbers after calibrating the model for pre- and post-wildfire conditions. Daily calibration and testing of the model produced very good results. No-wildfire and wildfire scenarios were created and compared to quantify changes in average annual total runoff volume, water budgets, and full streamflow statistics at different spatial scales. At the watershed scale, wildfire conditions showed little impact on the hydrologic responses. However, a runoff increase up to 75 % was observed between the scenarios in sub-watersheds with high burn intensity. Generally, higher surface runoff and decreased subsurface flow were observed under post-wildfire conditions. Flow duration curves developed for burned sub-watersheds using full streamflow statistics showed that less frequent streamflows become greater in magnitude. A linear regression model was developed to assess the relationship between percent burned area and runoff increase in Cache la Poudre Watershed. A strong (R2 > 0.8) and significant (p statistics through application of flow duration curves revealed that the wildfires had a higher effect on peak flows, which may increase the risk of flash floods in post-wildfire
Integrating Data Streams from in-situ Measurements, Social Networks and Satellite Earth Observation to Augment Operational Flood Monitoring and Forecasting: the 2017 Hurricane Season in the Americas as a Large-scale Test Case
Matgen, P.; Pelich, R.; Brangbour, E.; Bruneau, P.; Chini, M.; Hostache, R.; Schumann, G.; Tamisier, T.
Hurricanes Harvey, Irma and Maria generated large streams of heterogeneous data, coming notably from three main sources: imagery (satellite and aircraft), in-situ measurement stations and social media. Interpreting these data streams brings critical information to develop, validate and update prediction models. The study addresses existing gaps in the joint extraction of disaster risk information from multiple data sources and their usefulness for reducing the predictive uncertainty of large-scale flood inundation models. Satellite EO data, most notably the free-of-charge data streams generated by the Copernicus program, provided a wealth of high-resolution imagery covering the large areas affected. Our study is focussing on the mapping of flooded areas from a sequence of Sentinel-1 SAR imagery using a classification algorithm recently implemented on the European Space Agency's Grid Processing On Demand environment. The end-to-end-processing chain provided a fast access to all relevant imagery and an effective processing for near-real time analyses. The classification algorithm was applied on pairs of images to rapidly and automatically detect, record and disseminate all observable changes of water bodies. Disaster information was also retrieved from photos as well as texts contributed on social networks and the study shows how this information may complement EO and in-situ data and augment information content. As social media data are noisy and difficult to geo-localize, different techniques are being developed to automatically infer associated semantics and geotags. The presentation provides a cross-comparison between the hazard information obtained from the three data sources. We provide examples of how the generated database of geo-localized disaster information was finally integrated into a large-scale hydrodynamic model of the Colorado River emptying into the Matagorda Bay on the Gulf of Mexico in order to reduce its predictive uncertainty. We describe the
Bernier, C.; Kameshwar, S.; Padgett, J.
Three major refining centers - Corpus Christi, Houston, and Beaumont/Port Arthur - were affected during Hurricane Harvey. Damage to oil infrastructure, especially aboveground storage tanks (ASTs), caused the release of more than a million gallons of hazardous chemicals in the environment. The objective of this presentation is to identify and gain a better understanding of the different damage mechanisms that occurred during Harvey in order to avoid similar failures during future hurricane events. First, a qualitative description of the damage suffered by ASTs during Hurricane Harvey is presented. Analysis of aerial imagery and incident reports indicate that almost all spills were caused by rainfall and the associated flooding. The largest spill was caused by two large ASTs that floated due to flooding in the Houston Ship Channel releasing 500,000 gallons of gasoline. The vulnerability of ASTs subjected to flooding was already well known and documented from previous storm events. In addition to flooding, Harvey also exposed the vulnerability of ASTs with external floating roof to extreme rainfall; more than 15 floating roofs sank or tilted due to rain water accumulation on them, releasing pollutants in the atmosphere. Secondly, recent fragility models developed by the authors are presented which allow structural vulnerability assessment of floating roofs during rainfall events and ASTs during flood events. The fragility models are then coupled with Harvey rainfall and flood empirical data to identify the conditions (i.e.: internal liquid height or density, drainage system design and efficiency, etc.) that could have led to the observed failures during Hurricane Harvey. Finally, the conditions causing tank failures are studied to propose mitigation measures to prevent future AST failures during severe storm, flood, or rainfall events.
In the late summer of 2005, the remarkable flooding brought by Hurricane Katrina, which caused more than $200 billion in losses, constituted the costliest natural disaster in U.S. history. However, even in typical years, flooding causes billions of dollars in damage and threatens lives and property in every State. Natural processes, such as hurricanes, weather systems, and snowmelt, can cause floods. Failure of levees and dams and inadequate drainage in urban areas can also result in flooding. On average, floods kill about 140 people each year and cause $6 billion in property damage. Although loss of life to floods during the past half-century has declined, mostly because of improved warning systems, economic losses have continued to rise due to increased urbanization and coastal development.
Aerts, J.C.J.H.; Lin, N.; Botzen, W.J.W.; Emanuel, K.; de Moel, H.
The devastating impact by Hurricane Sandy (2012) again showed New York City (NYC) is one of the most vulnerable cities to coastal flooding around the globe. The low-lying areas in NYC can be flooded by nor'easter storms and North Atlantic hurricanes. The few studies that have estimated potential
Barbeau, Deborah N; Grimsley, L Faye; White, LuAnn E; El-Dahr, Jane M; Lichtveld, Maureen
The extensive flooding in the aftermath of Hurricanes Katrina and Rita created conditions ideal for indoor mold growth, raising concerns about the possible adverse health effects associated with indoor mold exposure. Studies evaluating the levels of indoor and outdoor molds in the months following the hurricanes found high levels of mold growth. Homes with greater flood damage, especially those with >3 feet of indoor flooding, demonstrated higher levels of mold growth compared with homes with little or no flooding. Water intrusion due to roof damage was also associated with mold growth. However, no increase in the occurrence of adverse health outcomes has been observed in published reports to date. This article considers reasons why studies of mold exposure after the hurricane do not show a greater health impact.
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — Hurricane Gustav poster. Multi-spectral image from NOAA-17 shows Hurricane Gustav having made landfall along the Louisiana coastline. Poster size is 36"x27"
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — The 2005 Atlantic Hurricanes poster features high quality satellite images of 15 hurricanes which formed in the Atlantic Basin (includes Gulf of Mexico and Caribbean...
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — Hurricane Ike poster. Multi-spectral image from NOAA-15 shows Hurricane Ike in the Gulf of Mexico heading toward Galveston Island, Texas. Poster size is 36"x27".
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — The 2004 U.S. Landfalling Hurricanes poster is a special edition poster which contains two sets of images of Hurricanes Charley, Frances, Ivan, and Jeanne, created...
Noble, R.M.; Simpson, B.
To satisfy U.S. Atomic Energy Commission (AEC) safety criteria, a required evaluation of the worst site-related flood is performed for the Crystal River Plant, located on the Gulf Coast of Florida, the probable maximum stillwater flood levels are likely to be a result of the probable maximum hurricane. Flood protection requirements for the Crystal River Plant are determined by considering the most severe combination of probable maximum hurricane parameters for the Gulf Coast Region. These parameters are used as input to a model of hurricane surge generation and attendant wave activity in order to determine the maximum flood levels at the Crystal River Plant. 4 refs
Floods and flash flooding Now is the time to determine your area’s flood risk. If you are not sure whether you ... If you are in a floodplain, consider buying flood insurance. Do not drive around barricades. If your ...
Rao, Nyapati; Mehra, Ashwin
Hurricane Sandy was one of the most devastating storms to hit the United States in history. The impact of the hurricane included power outages, flooding in the New York City subway system and East River tunnels, disrupted communications, acute shortages of gasoline and food, and a death toll of 113 people. In addition, thousands of residences and businesses in New Jersey and New York were destroyed. This article chronicles the first author's personal and professional experiences as a survivor of the hurricane, more specifically in the dual roles of provider and trauma victim, involving informed self-disclosure with a patient who was also a victim of the hurricane. The general analytic framework of therapy is evaluated in the context of the shared trauma faced by patient and provider alike in the face of the hurricane, leading to important implications for future work on resilience and recovery for both the therapist and patient.
Smoke from wildfires can be dangerous to your health. In this podcast, you will learn the health threats of wildfire smoke and steps you can take to minimize these effects. Created: 7/23/2012 by Office of Public Health Preparedness and Response (PHPR). Date Released: 7/23/2012.
Desjarlais, A. O.
; (2) Updated and improved application guidelines and manuals from associations and manufacturers; (3) Launched certified product installer programs; and (4) Submitted building code changes to improve product installation. Estimated wind speeds at the damage locations came from simulated hurricane models prepared by Applied Research Associates of Raleigh, North Carolina. A dynamic hurricane wind field model was calibrated to actual wind speeds measured at 12 inland and offshore stations. The maximum estimated peak gust wind speeds in Katrina were in the 120-130 mph range. Hurricane Katrina made landfall near Grand Isle, Louisiana, and traveled almost due north across the city of New Orleans. Hurricane winds hammered the coastline from Houma, Louisiana, to Pensacola, Florida. The severe flooding problems in New Orleans made it almost impossible for the investigating teams to function inside the city. Thus the WIP investigations were all conducted in areas east of the city. The six teams covered the coastal areas from Bay Saint Louis, Mississippi, on the west to Pascagoula, Mississippi, on the east. Six teams involving a total of 25 persons documented damage to both low slope and steep slope roofing systems. The teams collected specific information on each building examined, including type of structure (use or occupancy), wall construction, roof type, roof slope, building dimensions, roof deck, insulation, construction, and method of roof attachment. In addition, the teams noted terrain exposure and the estimated wind speeds at the building site from the Katrina wind speed map. With each team member assigned a specific duty, they described the damage in detail and illustrated important features with numerous color photos. Where possible, the points of damage initiation were identified and damage propagation described. Because the wind speeds in Katrina at landfall, where the investigations took place, were less than code-specified design speeds, one would expect roof
Pensacola Bay was in the strong NE quadrant of Hurricane Ivan when it made landfall on September 16, 2004 as a category 3 hurricane on the Saffir-Simpson scale. We present data describing the timeline and maximum height of the storm surge, the extent of flooding of coastal land, ...
On the morning of August 29, 2005 Hurricane Katrina struck the coast of Louisiana, between New Orleans and Biloxi, Mississippi, as a strong category three hurricane on the Saffir-Simpson scale. The massive winds and flooding had the potential for a tremendous environmental impac...
Brooks, K.N.; Fallon, J.D.; Lorenz, D.L.; Stark, J.R.; Menard, Jason; Easter, K.W.; Perry, Jim
Floods result in great human disasters globally and nationally, causing an average of $4 billion of damages each year in the United States. Minnesota has its share of floods and flood damages, and the state has awarded nearly $278 million to local units of government for flood mitigation projects through its Flood Hazard Mitigation Grant Program. Since 1995, flood mitigation in the Red River Valley has exceeded $146 million. Considerable local and state funding has been provided to manage and mitigate problems of excess stormwater in urban areas, flooding of farmlands, and flood damages at road crossings. The cumulative costs involved with floods and flood mitigation in Minnesota are not known precisely, but it is safe to conclude that flood mitigation is a costly business. This chapter begins with a description of floods in Minneosta to provide examples and contrasts across the state. Background material is presented to provide a basic understanding of floods and flood processes, predication, and management and mitigation. Methods of analyzing and characterizing floods are presented because they affect how we respond to flooding and can influence relevant practices. The understanding and perceptions of floods and flooding commonly differ among those who work in flood forecasting, flood protection, or water resource mamnagement and citizens and businesses affected by floods. These differences can become magnified following a major flood, pointing to the need for better understanding of flooding as well as common language to describe flood risks and the uncertainty associated with determining such risks. Expectations of accurate and timely flood forecasts and our ability to control floods do not always match reality. Striving for clarity is important in formulating policies that can help avoid recurring flood damages and costs.
Vance, Alexis; Elbing, Brian
Numerous natural and manmade sources generate infrasound, including tornado producing storms, human heart, hurricanes, and volcanoes. Infrasound is currently being studied as part of Collaboration Leading Operational UAS Development for Meteorology and Atmospheric Physics (CLOUD MAP), which is a multi-university collaboration focused on development and implementation of unmanned aircraft systems (UAS) and integration with sensors for atmospheric measurements. To support this effort a fixed infrasonic microphone located in Stillwater, Oklahoma has been monitoring atmospheric emissions since September of 2016. While severe storm systems is the primary focus of this work, the system also captures a wide range of infrasonic sources from distances in excess of 300 miles due to an acoustic ceiling and weak atmospheric absorption. The current presentation will focus on atmospheric infrasound observations during a large wildfire on the Kansas-Oklahoma border that occurred between March 6-22, 2017. This work was supported by NSF Grant 1539070.
Montagna, P.; Hu, X.; Walker, L.; Wetz, M.
Hurricane Harvey made landfall Friday 25 August 2017 as a Category 4 hurricane, which is the strongest hurricane to hit the middle Texas coast since Carla in 1961. After the wind storm and storm surge, coastal flooding occurred due to the storm lingering over Texas for four more days, dumping as much as 50" of rain near Houston, producing 1:1000 year flood event. The Texas coast is characterized by lagoons behind barrier islands, and their ecology and biogeochemistry are strongly influenced by coastal hydrology. The ensuing inflow event replaced brackish water with fresh water that was high in inorganic an organic matter, significantly enhancing respiration of coastal blue carbon, and dissolved oxygen went to zero for a long period of time. Recovery will likely take months or nearly one year.
Gesch, Dean B.
The damages caused by the storm surges from Hurricane Katrina and Hurricane Rita were significant and occurred over broad areas. Storm-surge maps are among the most useful geospatial datasets for hurricane recovery, impact assessments, and mitigation planning for future storms. Surveyed high-water marks were used to generate a maximum storm-surge surface for Hurricane Katrina extending from eastern Louisiana to Mobile Bay, Alabama. The interpolated surface was intersected with high-resolution lidar elevation data covering the study area to produce a highly detailed digital storm-surge inundation map. The storm-surge dataset and related data are available for display and query in a Web-based viewer application. A unique water-level dataset from a network of portable pressure sensors deployed in the days just prior to Hurricane Rita's landfall captured the hurricane's storm surge. The recorded sensor data provided water-level measurements with a very high temporal resolution at surveyed point locations. The resulting dataset was used to generate a time series of storm-surge surfaces that documents the surge dynamics in a new, spatially explicit way. The temporal information contained in the multiple storm-surge surfaces can be visualized in a number of ways to portray how the surge interacted with and was affected by land surface features. Spatially explicit storm-surge products can be useful for a variety of hurricane impact assessments, especially studies of wetland and land changes where knowledge of the extent and magnitude of storm-surge flooding is critical.
Van Oldenborgh, Geert Jan; Van Der Wiel, Karin; Sebastian, A.G.; Singh, Roop; Arrighi, Julie; Otto, Friederike; Haustein, Karsten; Li, Sihan; Vecchi, Gabriel; Cullen, Heidi
During August 25-30, 2017, Hurricane Harvey stalled over Texas and caused extreme precipitation, particularly over Houston and the surrounding area on August 26-28. This resulted in extensive flooding with over 80 fatalities and large economic costs. It was an extremely rare event: the return
Aerts, J.C.J.H.; Botzen, W.J.W.
The weakening of Irene from a Category 3 hurricane to a tropical storm resulted in less damage in New York City (NYC) than initially was anticipated. It is widely recognized that the storm surge and associated flooding could have been much more severe. In a recent study, we showed that a direct hit
Sullivan Sealey, Kathleen; Bowleg, John
Great Exuma has been a UNESCO Eco-hydrology Project Site with a focus on coastal restoration and flood management. Great Exuma and its largest settlement, George Town, support a population of just over 8.000 people on an island dominated by extensive coastal wetlands. The Victoria Pond Eco-Hydrology project restored flow and drainage to highly-altered coastal wetlands to reduce flooding of the built environment as well as regain ecological function. The project was designed to show the value of a protected wetland and coastal environment within a populated settlement; demonstrating that people can live alongside mangroves and value "green" infrastructure for flood protection. The restoration project was initiated after severe storm flooding in 2007 with Tropical Storm Noel. In 2016, the passing of Hurricane Matthew had unprecedented impacts on the coastal communities of Great Exuma, challenging past practices in restoration and flood prevention. This talk reviews the loss of natural capital (for example, fish populations, mangroves, salt water inundation) from Hurricane Matthew based on a rapid response survey of Great Exuma. The surprisingly find was the impact of storm surge on low-lying areas used primarily for personal farms and small-scale agriculture. Although women made up the overwhelming majority of people who attended Coastal Restoration workshops, women were most adversely impacted by the recent hurricane flooding with the loss of their small low-lying farms and gardens. Although increasing culverts in mangrove creeks in two areas did reduce building flood damage, the low-lying areas adjacent to mangroves, mostly ephemeral freshwater wetlands, were inundated with saltwater, and seasonal crops in these areas were destroyed. These ephemeral wetlands were designed as part of the wetland flooding system, it was not known how important these small areas were to artisanal farming on Great Exuma. The size and scope of Hurricane Matthew passing through the
Patricia A. Champ; Nicholas Flores; Hannah Brenkert-Smith
In this presentation, we describe results of a survey to homeowners living in wildfire-prone areas of two counties along the Front Range of the Rocky Mountains in Colorado. The survey was designed to elicit information on homeowners' experience with wildfire, perceptions of wildfire risk on their property and neighboring properties, mitigation efforts undertaken...
The Hurricane Imaging Radiometer (HIRAD) is a synthetic thinned array passive microwave radiometer designed to allow retrieval of surface wind speed in hurricanes, up through category five intensity. The retrieval technology follows the Stepped Frequency Microwave Radiometer (SFMR), which measures surface wind speed in hurricanes along a narrow strip beneath the aircraft. HIRAD maps wind speeds in a swath below the aircraft, about 50-60 km wide when flown in the lower stratosphere. HIRAD has flown in the NASA Genesis and Rapid Intensification Processes (GRIP) experiment in 2010 on a WB-57 aircraft, and on a Global Hawk unmanned aircraft system (UAS) in 2012 and 2013 as part of NASA's Hurricane and Severe Storms Sentinel (HS3) program. The GRIP program included flights over Hurricanes Earl and Karl (2010). The 2012 HS3 deployment did not include any hurricane flights for the UAS carrying HIRAD. The 2013 HS3 flights included one flight over the predecessor to TS Gabrielle, and one flight over Hurricane Ingrid. This presentation will describe the HIRAD instrument, its results from the 2010 and 2013 flights, and potential future developments.
The 2017 wildfire season has seen unusually high fire levels in many parts of the world, with extensive and severe fires occurring in Chile, the Mediterranean, Russia, the US, Canada and even Greenland. Is this a sign of things to come?
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — Observations from the Cooperative Hurricane Reporting Network (CHURN), a special network of stations that provided observations when tropical cyclones approached the...
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency — Hurricane Katrina made landfall in August 2005, causing widespread devastation along the Gulf Coast of the United States. EPA emergency response personnel worked...
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency — Hurricane Katrina made landfall in August 2005, causing widespread devastation along the Gulf Coast of the United States. EPA emergency response personnel worked...
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency — Hurricane Katrina made landfall in August 2005, causing widespread devastation along the Gulf Coast of the United States. EPA emergency response personnel worked...
On October 29, 2012, Hurricane Sandy hit the northeastern U.S. coastline. Sandy's tropical storm winds stretched over 900 miles (1,440 km), causing storm surges and destruction over a larger area than that affected by hurricanes with more intensity but narrower paths. Based on storm surge predictions, mandatory evacuations were ordered on October 28, including for New York City's Evacuation Zone A, the coastal zone at risk for flooding from any hurricane. By October 31, the region had 6-12 inches (15-30 cm) of precipitation, 7-8 million customers without power, approximately 20,000 persons in shelters, and news reports of numerous fatalities (Robert Neurath, CDC, personal communication, 2013). To characterize deaths related to Sandy, CDC analyzed data on 117 hurricane-related deaths captured by American Red Cross (Red Cross) mortality tracking during October 28-November 30, 2012. This report describes the results of that analysis, which found drowning was the most common cause of death related to Sandy, and 45% of drowning deaths occurred in flooded homes in Evacuation Zone A. Drowning is a leading cause of hurricane death but is preventable with advance warning systems and evacuation plans. Emergency plans should ensure that persons receive and comprehend evacuation messages and have the necessary resources to comply with them.
Schubert, Christopher E.; Busciolano, Ronald J.; Hearn, Paul P.; Rahav, Ami N.; Behrens, Riley; Finkelstein, Jason S.; Monti, Jack; Simonson, Amy E.
The hybrid cyclone-nor’easter known as Hurricane Sandy affected the mid-Atlantic and northeastern United States during October 28-30, 2012, causing extensive coastal flooding. Prior to storm landfall, the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) deployed a temporary monitoring network from Virginia to Maine to record the storm tide and coastal flooding generated by Hurricane Sandy. This sensor network augmented USGS and National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) networks of permanent monitoring sites that also documented storm surge. Continuous data from these networks were supplemented by an extensive post-storm high-water-mark (HWM) flagging and surveying campaign. The sensor deployment and HWM campaign were conducted under a directed mission assignment by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). The need for hydrologic interpretation of monitoring data to assist in flood-damage analysis and future flood mitigation prompted the current analysis of Hurricane Sandy by the USGS under this FEMA mission assignment.
The Composite Flood Risk layer combines flood hazard datasets from Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) flood zones, NOAA's Shallow Coastal Flooding, and the National Hurricane Center SLOSH model for Storm Surge inundation for category 1, 2, and 3 hurricanes.Geographic areas are represented by a grid of 10 by 10 meter cells and each cell has a ranking based on variation in exposure to flooding hazards: Moderate, High and Extreme exposure. Geographic areas in each input layers are ranked based on their probability of flood risk exposure. The logic was such that areas exposed to flooding on a more frequent basis were given a higher ranking. Thus the ranking incorporates the probability of the area being flooded. For example, even though a Category 3 storm surge has higher flooding elevations, the likelihood of the occurrence is lower than a Category 1 storm surge and therefore the Category 3 flood area is given a lower exposure ranking. Extreme exposure areas are those areas that are exposed to relatively frequent flooding.The ranked input layers are then converted to a raster for the creation of the composite risk layer by using cell statistics in spatial analysis. The highest exposure ranking for a given cell in any of the three input layers is assigned to the corresponding cell in the composite layer.For example, if an area (a cell) is rank as medium in the FEMA layer, moderate in the SLOSH layer, but extreme in the SCF layer, the cell will be considere
Zhong, Xu; Duckham, Matt; Chong, Derek; Tolhurst, Kevin
Real-time information about the spatial extents of evolving natural disasters, such as wildfire or flood perimeters, can assist both emergency responders and the general public during an emergency. However, authoritative information sources can suffer from bottlenecks and delays, while user-generated social media data usually lacks the necessary structure and trustworthiness for reliable automated processing. This paper describes and evaluates an automated technique for real-time tracking of wildfire perimeters based on publicly available “curated” crowdsourced data about telephone calls to the emergency services. Our technique is based on established data mining tools, and can be adjusted using a small number of intuitive parameters. Experiments using data from the devastating Black Saturday wildfires (2009) in Victoria, Australia, demonstrate the potential for the technique to detect and track wildfire perimeters automatically, in real time, and with moderate accuracy. Accuracy can be further increased through combination with other authoritative demographic and environmental information, such as population density and dynamic wind fields. These results are also independently validated against data from the more recent 2014 Mickleham-Dalrymple wildfires.
Berenbrock, Charles; Mason, Jr., Robert R.; Blanchard, Stephen F.; Simonovic, Slobodan P.
Flood-inundation data are most useful for decision makers when presented in the context of maps of effected communities and (or) areas. But because the data are scarce and rarely cover the full extent of the flooding, interpolation and extrapolation of the information are needed. Many geographic information systems (GIS) provide various interpolation tools, but these tools often ignore the effects of the topographic and hydraulic features that influence flooding. A barrier mapping method was developed to improve maps of storm tide produced by Hurricane Rita. Maps were developed for the maximum storm tide and at 3-hour intervals from midnight (0000 hour) through noon (1200 hour) on September 24, 2005. The improved maps depict storm-tide elevations and the extent of flooding. The extent of storm-tide inundation from the improved maximum storm-tide map was compared to the extent of flood-inundation from a map prepared by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). The boundaries from these two maps generally compared quite well especially along the Calcasieu River. Also a cross-section profile that parallels the Louisiana coast was developed from the maximum storm-tide map and included FEMA high-water marks.
Smith, Mark E.; Phillips, Jeffrey V.; Spahr, Norman E.
Hurricane Mitch began as a tropical depression in the Caribbean Sea on 22 October 1998. By 26 October, Mitch had strengthened to a Category 5 storm as defined by the Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Scale (National Climate Data Center, 1999a), and on 27 October was threatening the northern coast of Honduras (fig. 1). After making landfall 2 days later (29 October), the storm drifted south and west across Honduras, wreaking destruction throughout the country before reaching the Guatemalan border on 31 October. According to the National Climate Data Center of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (National Climate Data Center, 1999b), Hurricane Mitch ranks among the five strongest storms on record in the Atlantic Basin in terms of its sustained winds, barometric pressure, and duration. Hurricane Mitch also was one of the worst Atlantic storms in terms of loss of life and property. The regionwide death toll was estimated to be more than 9,000; thousands of people were reported missing. Economic losses in the region were more than $7.5 billion (U.S. Agency for International Development, 1999). Honduras suffered the most widespread devastation during the storm. More than 5,000 deaths, and economic losses of more than $4 billion, were reported by the Government of Honduras. Honduran officials estimated that Hurricane Mitch destroyed 50 years of economic development. In addition to the human and economic losses, intense flooding and landslides scarred the Honduran landscape - hydrologic and geomorphologic processes throughout the country likely will be affected for many years. As part of the U.S. Government's response to the disaster, the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) conducted post-flood measurements of peak discharge at 16 river sites throughout Honduras (fig. 2). Such measurements, termed 'indirect' measurements, are used to determine peak flows when direct measurements (using current meters or dye studies, for example) cannot be made. Indirect measurements of
Sebastian, A.G.; Lendering, K.T.; Kothuis, B.L.M.; Brand, A.D.; Jonkman, S.N.; van Gelder, P.H.A.J.M.; Kolen, B.; Comes, M.; Lhermitte, S.L.M.; Meesters, K.J.M.G.; van de Walle, B.A.; Ebrahimi Fard, A.; Cunningham, S.; Khakzad Rostami, N.; Nespeca, V.
On August 25, 2017, Hurricane Harvey made landfall near Rockport, Texas as a Category 4 hurricane with maximum sustained winds of approximately 200 km/hour. Harvey caused severe damages in coastal Texas due to extreme winds and storm surge, but will go down in history for record-setting rainfall totals and flood-related damages. Across large portions of southeast Texas, rainfall totals during the six-day period between August 25 and 31, 2017 were amongst the highest ever recorded, causing flo...
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — The Continental U.S. Hurricane Strikes Poster is our most popular poster which is updated annually. The poster includes all hurricanes that affected the U.S. since...
Kettner, A.; Chong, A.; Prades, L.; Brakenridge, G. R.; Muir, S.; Amparore, A.; Slayback, D. A.; Poungprom, R.
Flooding is the most common natural hazard worldwide, affecting 21 million people every year. In the immediate moments following a flood event, humanitarian actors like the World Food Program need to make rapid decisions ( 72 hrs) on how to prioritize affected areas impacted by such an event. For other natural disasters like hurricanes/cyclones and earthquakes, there are industry-recognized standards on how the impacted areas are to be classified. Shake maps, quantifying peak ground motion, from for example the US Geological Survey are widely used for assessing earthquakes. Similarly, cyclones are tracked by Joint Typhoon Warning Center (JTWC) and Global Disaster Alert and Coordination System (GDACS) who release storm nodes and tracks (forecasted and actual), with wind buffers and classify the event according to the Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Wind Scale. For floods, the community is usually able to acquire unclassified data of the flood extent as identified from satellite imagery. Most often no water discharge hydrograph is available to classify the event into recurrence intervals simply because there is no gauging station, or the gauging station was unable to record the maximum discharge due to overtopping or flood damage. So, the question remains: How do we methodically turn a flooded area into classified areas of different gradations of impact? Here, we present a first approach towards developing a global applicable flood severity index. The flood severity index is set up such that it considers relatively easily obtainable physical parameters in a short period of time like: flood frequency (relating the current flood to historical events) and magnitude, as well as land cover, slope, and where available pre-event simulated flood depth. The scale includes categories ranging from very minor flooding to catastrophic flooding. We test and evaluate the postulated classification scheme against a set of past flood events. Once a severity category is determined, socio
This article presents suggestions for integrating the phenomenon of hurricanes into the teaching of high school fluid mechanics. Students come to understand core science concepts in the context of their impact upon both the environment and human populations. Suggestions for using information about hurricanes, particularly Hurricane Katrina, in a…
Villarini, G.; Smith, J. A.; Ntelekos, A. A.
Tropical cyclones landfalling in the eastern United States pose a major risk for insured property and can lead to extensive damage through storm surge flooding, inland flooding or extreme windspeeds. Current hurricane cat-models do not include calculations of inland flooding from the outer rainfall bands of tropical cyclones but the issue is becoming increasingly important for commercial insurance risk assessment. The results of this study could be used to feed into the next generation of hurricane cat-models and assist in the calculation of damages from inland hurricane flood damage. Annual maximum peak discharge records from more than 400 stations in the eastern United States with at least 75 years of record to examine the role of landfalling tropical cyclones in controlling the upper tail of inland flood risk for the eastern United States. In addition to examining tropical cyclone inland flood risk at specific locations, the spatial extent of extreme flooding from lanfalling tropical cyclones is analyzed. Analyses of temporal trends and abrupt changes in the mean and variance of annual flood peaks are performed. Change-point analysis is performed using the non-parametric Pettitt test. Two non-parametric (Mann-Kendall and Spearman) tests and one parametric (Pearson) test are applied to detect the presence of temporal trends. Flood risk characterization centers on assessments of the spatial variation in "upper tail" properties of annual flood peak distributions. The modeling framework for flood frequency analysis is provided by the Generalized Additive Models for Location Scale and Shape (GAMLSS).
Pierce, J. L.; Duffin, J.; Lindquist, E.; Wuerzer, T.; Pellant, M.
High fuel densities, combined with increasingly severe drought, make the western US highly susceptible to changes in the timing of snowmelt and increases in the length of the fire season. The forests and rangelands of Idaho are especially prone to wildfire; in 2012, over 1.7 million acres burned across Idaho, more acres than in any other state. Climate change is projected to increase summer temperatures and decrease summer precipitation in Idaho, and a drier, warmer, and more variable climate will increase the risk of stand-replacing fires. While infrastructure and alert systems are in place to warn residents about threats from hurricanes, floods and tornados, there is limited protection for communities in the ';fire-plain.' Part of this lack of preparation may stem from the belief that fires can be prevented or stopped; a perception that has been perpetuated by ';Smokey Bear,' and the generally successful interval of fire suppression during the 1960's-1980's. However, in the mid-1980's, severe drought, rising temperatures, and early snowmelt have brought an era of ';mega-fires' to the American West. Periods of recurring high wildfire activity across the western US are not unprecedented in the paleo-record, but the frequency of large fires (> 400 ha) and the annual area burned have increased in the modern. For example, in the past 10 years in Idaho, 17 fires burned over 100,000 acres each: six of those fires occurred in 2012. Likewise, the size and severity of rangeland fires in the Western U.S. has increased by almost an order of magnitude in recent decades; in the early 1980's, range fire extents over 100,000 acres was unheard of, but has become increasingly common in recent years (Pellant, 2013). Boise State University's departments of Geoscience, Community and Regional Planning, and the Public Policy Center are examining the risks and impacts of fire along the Boise WUI. The research integrates the perspectives of the geosciences and social sciences by
Yeom, J.; Jung, J.; Chang, A.; Choi, I.
Hurricane Harvey which was extremely destructive major hurricane struck southern Texas, U.S.A on August 25, causing catastrophic flooding and storm damages. We visited Rockport suffered severe building destruction and conducted UAV (Unmanned Aerial Vehicle) surveying for building damage assessment. UAV provides very high resolution images compared with traditional remote sensing data. In addition, prompt and cost-effective damage assessment can be performed regardless of several limitations in other remote sensing platforms such as revisit interval of satellite platforms, complicated flight plan in aerial surveying, and cloud amounts. In this study, UAV flight and GPS surveying were conducted two weeks after hurricane damage to generate an orthomosaic image and a DEM (Digital Elevation Model). 3D region growing scheme has been proposed to quantitatively estimate building damages considering building debris' elevation change and spectral difference. The result showed that the proposed method can be used for high definition building damage assessment in a time- and cost-effective way.
Liu, Jackie; Liu, Zhong
Precipitation is a vital aspect of our lives droughts, floods and other related disasters that involve precipitation can cause costly damage in the economic system and general society. Purpose of this project is to determine what, if any effect do hurricanes have on annual precipitation in Maryland Research will be conducted on Marylands terrain, climatology, annual precipitation, and precipitation contributed from hurricanes Possible connections to climate change
Parker, A.; Chin, A.; O'Dowd, A. P.
Recovery of riverine ecosystems following disturbance is driven by a variety of interacting processes. Wildfires pose increasing disturbances to riverine landscapes, with rising frequencies and magnitudes owing to warming climates and increased fuel loads. The effects of wildfire include loss of vegetation, elevated runoff and flash floods, erosion and deposition, and changing biological habitats and communities. Understanding process interactions in post-fire landscapes is increasingly urgent for successful management and restoration of affected ecosystems. In steep channels, steps and pools provide prominent habitats for organisms and structural integrity in high energy environments. Step-pools are typically stable, responding to extreme events with recurrence intervals often exceeding 50 years. Once wildfire occurs, however, intensification of post-fire flood events can potentially overpower the inherent stability of these systems, with significant consequences for aquatic life and human well-being downstream. This study examined the short-term response of step-pool streams following the 2012 Waldo Canyon Fire in Colorado. We explored interacting feedbacks among geomorphology, hydrology, and ecology in the post-fire environment. At selected sites with varying burn severity, we established baseline conditions immediately after the fire with channel surveys, biological assessment using benthic macroinvertebrates, sediment analysis including pebble counts, and precipitation gauging. Repeat measurements after major storm events over several years enabled analysis of the interacting feedbacks among post-fire processes. We found that channels able to retain the step-pool structure changed less and facilitated recovery more readily. Step habitats maintained higher percentages of sensitive macroinvertebrate taxa compared to pools through post-fire floods. Sites burned with high severity experienced greater reduction in the percentage of sensitive taxa. The decimation of
De Bremaecker, J C
As hurricane "Hilda" crossed the Gulf of Mexico the dominant period of the microseisms shifted from about 8 to 5 seconds as the eye reached water about 150 to 200 meters deep. The conversion of wind energy to microseismic energy is most efficient in water depths from 20 to 200 meters. There is no evidence that two periods, one twice the other, are present.
Patricia M. Alexandre; Miranda H. Mockrin; Susan I. Stewart; Roger B. Hammer; Volker C. Radeloff
The number of wildland-urban interface communities affected by wildfire is increasing, and both wildfire suppression and losses are costly. However, little is known about post-wildfire response by homeowners and communities after buildings are lost. Our goal was to characterise rebuilding and new development after wildfires across the conterminous United States. We...
Jonkman, Sebastiaan N.; Godfroy, Maartje; Sebastian, Antonia; Kolen, Bas
An analysis was made of the loss of life caused by Hurricane Harvey. Information was collected for 70 fatalities that occurred due to the event and were recovered within the first 2 weeks after landfall. Most fatalities occurred due to drowning (81 %), particularly in and around vehicles. Males (70 %) and people over 50 years old (56 %) were overrepresented in the dataset. More than half of the fatalities occurred in the greater Houston area (n = 37), where heavy rainfall and dam releases caused unprecedented urban flooding. The majority of fatalities were recovered outside the designated 100- and 500-year flood hazard areas.
D. Max Smith; Jeffrey Kelly; Deborah M. Finch
Annually emerging cicadas are a numerically and ecologically dominant species in Southwestern riparian forests. Humans have altered disturbance regimes that structure these forests such that floods are less common and wildfires occur more frequently than was historically the case. Impacts of these changes on primary consumers such as riparian cicadas are unknown....
McNamara, D.; Werner, B.; Kelso, A.
Motivated by destruction in New Orleans following hurricane Katrina, we use a numerical model to explore how natural processes, economic development, hazard mitigation measures and policy decisions intertwine to produce long periods of quiescence punctuated by disasters of increasing magnitude. Physical, economic and policy dynamics are modeled on a grid representing the subsiding Mississippi Delta region surrounding New Orleans. Water flow and resulting sediment erosion and deposition are simulated in response to prescribed river floods and storms. Economic development operates on a limited number of commodities and services such as agricultural products, oil and chemical industries and port services, with investment and employment responding to both local conditions and global constraints. Development permitting, artificial levee construction and pumping are implemented by policy agents who weigh predicted economic benefits (tax revenue), mitigation costs and potential hazards. Economic risk is reduced by a combination of private insurance, federal flood insurance and disaster relief. With this model, we simulate the initiation and growth of New Orleans coupled with an increasing level of protection from a series of flooding events. Hazard mitigation filters out small magnitude events, but terrain and hydrological modifications amplify the impact of large events. In our model, "natural disasters" are the inevitable outcome of the mismatch between policy based on short-time-scale economic calculations and stochastic forcing by infrequent, high-magnitude flooding events. A comparison of the hazard mitigation response to river- and hurricane-induced flooding will be discussed. Supported by NSF Geology and Paleontology and the Andrew W Mellon Foundation.
Reja, Md Y.; Brody, Samuel D.; Highfield, Wesley E.; Newman, Galen D.
Recovery after hurricane events encourages new development activities and allows reconstruction through the conversion of naturally occurring wetlands to other land uses. This research investigates the degree to which hurricane recovery activities in coastal communities are undermining the ability of these places to attenuate the impacts of future storm events. Specifically, it explores how and to what extent wetlands are being affected by the CWA Section 404 permitting program in the context of post-Hurricane Ike 2008 recovery. Wetland alteration patterns are examined by selecting a control group (Aransas and Brazoria counties with no hurricane impact) vs. study group (Chambers and Galveston counties with hurricane impact) research design with a pretest-posttest measurement analyzing the variables such as permit types, pre-post Ike permits, land cover classes, and within-outside the 100-year floodplain. Results show that permitting activities in study group have increased within the 100-year floodplain and palustrine wetlands continue to be lost compare to the control group. Simultaneously, post-Ike individual and nationwide permits increased in the Hurricane Ike impacted area. A binomial logistic regression model indicated that permits within the study group, undeveloped land cover class, and individual and nationwide permit type have a substantial effect on post-Ike permits, suggesting that post-Ike permits have significant impact on wetland losses. These findings indicate that recovery after the hurricane is compromising ecological resiliency in coastal communities. The study outcome may be applied to policy decisions in managing wetlands during a long-term recovery process to maintain natural function for future flood mitigation.
Kleinpeter, Myra A
Hurricanes Katrina and Rita resulted in massive devastation of the Gulf Coast at Mississippi, Louisiana, and Texas during 2005. Because of those disasters, dialysis providers, nephrologists, and dialysis patients used disaster planning activities to work to mitigate the morbidity and mortality associated with the 2005 hurricane season for future events affecting dialysis patients. As Hurricane Gustav approached, anniversary events for Hurricane Katrina were postponed because of evacuation orders for nearly the entire Louisiana Gulf Coast. As part of the hurricane preparation, dialysis units reviewed the disaster plans of patients, and patients made preparation for evacuation. Upon evacuation, many patients returned to the dialysis units that had provided services during their exile from Hurricane Katrina; other patients went to other locations as part of their evacuation plan. Patients uniformly reported positive experiences with dialysis providers in their temporary evacuation communities, provided that those communities did not experience the effects of Hurricane Gustav. With the exception of evacuees to Baton Rouge, patients continued to receive their treatments uninterrupted. Because of extensive damage in the Baton Rouge area, resulting in widespread power losses and delayed restoration of power to hospitals and other health care facilities, some patients missed one treatment. However, as a result of compliance with disaster fluid and dietary recommendations, no adverse outcomes occurred. In most instances, patients were able to return to their home dialysis unit or a nearby unit to continue dialysis treatments within 4 - 5 days of Hurricane Gustav. Hurricane Ike struck the Texas Gulf Coast near Galveston, resulting in devastation of that area similar to the devastation seen in New Orleans after Katrina. The storm surge along the Louisiana Gulf Coast resulted in flooding that temporarily closed coastal dialysis units. Patients were prepared and experienced
CDC and the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR) have guidance and technical materials available in both English and Spanish to help communities prepare for hurricanes and floods (Table 1). To help protect the health and safety of the public, responders, and clean-up workers during response and recovery operations from hurricanes and floods, CDC and ATSDR have developed public health guidance and other resources; many are available in both English and Spanish (Table 2).
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — Hurricane Katrina poster. Multi-spectral image from NOAA-18 shows a very large Hurricane Katrina as a category 5 hurricane in the Gulf of Mexico on August 28, 2005....
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — Hurricane Rita poster. Multi-spectral image from NOAA-16 shows Hurricane Rita as a category-4 hurricane in the Gulf of Mexico on September 22, 2005. Poster size is...
This site provides an online Smoke Ready Toolbox for Wildfires, which lists resources and tools that provide information on health impacts from smoke exposure, current fire conditions and forecasts and strategies to reduce exposure to smoke.
Minnesota Department of Natural Resources — This theme shows the locations of wildfires for which the DNR was the primary responding agency. These include fires not only on state lands, but also rural private...
Ambrosia, V. G.; Dahlgren, R. P.; Watts, A.; Reynolds, K. W.; Ball, T.
Wildfires are regularly occurring emergency events that threaten life, property, and natural resources in every U.S. State and many countries around the world. Despite projections that $1.8 billion will be spent by U.S. Federal agencies alone on wildfires in 2014, the decades-long trend of increasing fire size, severity, and cost is expected to continue. Furthermore, the enormous potential for UAS (and concomitant sensor systems) to serve as geospatial intelligence tools to improve the safety and effectiveness of fire management, and our ability to forecast fire and smoke movements, remains barely tapped. Although orbital sensor assets are can provide the geospatial extent of wildfires, generally those resources are limited in use due to their spatial and temporal resolution limitations. These two critical elements make orbital assets of limited utility for tactical, real-time wildfire management, or for continuous scientific analysis of the temporal dynamics related to fire energy release rates and plume concentrations that vary significantly thru a fire's progression. Large UAS platforms and sensors can and have been used to monitor wildfire events at improved temporal, spatial and radiometric scales, but more focus is being placed on the use of small UAS (sUAS) and sensors to support wildfire observation strategies. The use of sUAS is therefore more critical for TACTICAL management purposes, rather than strategic observations, where small-scale fire developments are critical to understand. This paper will highlight the historical development and use of UAS for fire observations, as well as the current shift in focus to smaller, more affordable UAS for more rapid integration into operational use on wildfire events to support tactical observation strategies, and support wildfire science measurement inprovements.
Dawn J. Schaffer; Craig A. Miller
Hurricanes Katrina and Rita made landfall in southern Louisiana during August and September 2005. Prior to these storms, swamp tours were a growing sector of nature-based tourism that entertained visitors while teaching about local flora, fauna, and culture. This study determined post-hurricane operating status of tours, damage sustained, and repairs made. Differences...
Jonkman, Sebastiaan N.; Godfroy, Maartje; Sebastian, Antonia; Kolen, Bas
An analysis was made of the loss of life directly caused by hurricane Harvey. Information was collected for 70 fatalities that occurred directly due to the event. Most of the fatalities occurred in the greater Houston area, which was most severely affected by extreme rainfall and heavy flooding. The majority of fatalities in this area were recovered outside the designated 100 and 500 year flood zones. Most fatalities occurred due to drowning (81 %), particularly in and around vehicles...
Chen, Shuyi S.; Curcic, Milan
Forecasting hurricane impacts of extreme winds and flooding requires accurate prediction of hurricane structure and storm-induced ocean surface waves days in advance. The waves are complex, especially near landfall when the hurricane winds and water depth varies significantly and the surface waves refract, shoal and dissipate. In this study, we examine the spatial structure, magnitude, and directional spectrum of hurricane-induced ocean waves using a high resolution, fully coupled atmosphere-wave-ocean model and observations. The coupled model predictions of ocean surface waves in Hurricane Ike (2008) over the Gulf of Mexico and Superstorm Sandy (2012) in the northeastern Atlantic and coastal region are evaluated with the NDBC buoy and satellite altimeter observations. Although there are characteristics that are general to ocean waves in both hurricanes as documented in previous studies, wave fields in Ike and Sandy possess unique properties due mostly to the distinct wind fields and coastal bathymetry in the two storms. Several processes are found to significantly modulate hurricane surface waves near landfall. First, the phase speed and group velocities decrease as the waves become shorter and steeper in shallow water, effectively increasing surface roughness and wind stress. Second, the bottom-induced refraction acts to turn the waves toward the coast, increasing the misalignment between the wind and waves. Third, as the hurricane translates over land, the left side of the storm center is characterized by offshore winds over very short fetch, which opposes incoming swell. Landfalling hurricanes produce broader wave spectra overall than that of the open ocean. The front-left quadrant is most complex, where the combination of windsea, swell propagating against the wind, increasing wind-wave stress, and interaction with the coastal topography requires a fully coupled model to meet these challenges in hurricane wave and surge prediction.
Chen, Z.; Glasscoe, M. T.; Parker, J. W.
Wildfire events followed by heavy precipitation have been proven causally related to breakouts of mudflow or debris flow, which, can demand rapid evacuation and threaten residential communities and civil infrastructure. For example, in the case of the city of Glendora, California, it was first afflicted by a severe wildfire in 1968 and then the flooding caused mudslides and debris flow in 1969 killed 34 people. Therefore, burn area or vegetation loss mapping due to wildfire is critical to agencies for preparing for secondary hazards, particularly flooding and flooding induced mudflow. However, rapid post-wildfire mapping of vegetation loss mapping is not readily obtained by regular remote sensing methods, e.g. various optical methods, due to the presence of smoke, haze, and rainy/cloudy conditions that often follow a wildfire event. In this paper, we will introduce and develop a deep learning-based framework that uses Synthetic Aperture Radar images collected prior to and after a wildfire event. A convolutional neural network (CNN) approach will be used that replaces traditional principle component analysis (PCA) based differencing for non-supervised change feature extraction. Using a small sample of human-labeled burned vegetation, normal vegetation, and urban built-up pixels, we will compare the performance of deep learning and PCA-based feature extraction. The 2014 Coby Fire event, which affected the downstream city of Glendora, was used to evaluate the proposed framework. The NASA's UAVSAR data (https://uavsar.jpl.nasa.gov/) will be utilized for mapping the vegetation damage due to the Coby Fire event.
M. H. Glantz
Full Text Available By American standards, New Orleans is a very old, very popular city in the southern part of the United States. It is located in Louisiana at the mouth of the Mississippi River, a river which drains about 40% of the Continental United States, making New Orleans a major port city. It is also located in an area of major oil reserves onshore, as well as offshore, in the Gulf of Mexico. Most people know New Orleans as a tourist hotspot; especially well-known is the Mardi Gras season at the beginning of Lent. People refer to the city as the "Big Easy". A recent biography of the city refers to it as the place where the emergence of modern tourism began. A multicultural city with a heavy French influence, it was part of the Louisiana Purchase from France in early 1803, when the United States bought it, doubling the size of the United States at that time.
Today, in the year 2007, New Orleans is now known for the devastating impacts it withstood during the onslaught of Hurricane Katrina in late August 2005. Eighty percent of the city was submerged under flood waters. Almost two years have passed, and many individuals and government agencies are still coping with the hurricane's consequences. And insurance companies have been withdrawing their coverage for the region.
The 2005 hurricane season set a record, in the sense that there were 28 named storms that calendar year. For the first time in hurricane forecast history, hurricane forecasters had to resort to the use of Greek letters to name tropical storms in the Atlantic and Gulf (Fig.~1.
Hurricane Katrina was a Category 5 hurricane when it was in the middle of the Gulf of Mexico, after having passed across southern Florida. At landfall, Katrina's winds decreased in speed and it was relabeled as a Category 4. It devolved into a Category 3 hurricane as it passed inland when it did most of its damage. Large expanses of the city were inundated, many parts under water on
Glantz, M. H.
By American standards, New Orleans is a very old, very popular city in the southern part of the United States. It is located in Louisiana at the mouth of the Mississippi River, a river which drains about 40% of the Continental United States, making New Orleans a major port city. It is also located in an area of major oil reserves onshore, as well as offshore, in the Gulf of Mexico. Most people know New Orleans as a tourist hotspot; especially well-known is the Mardi Gras season at the beginning of Lent. People refer to the city as the "Big Easy". A recent biography of the city refers to it as the place where the emergence of modern tourism began. A multicultural city with a heavy French influence, it was part of the Louisiana Purchase from France in early 1803, when the United States bought it, doubling the size of the United States at that time. Today, in the year 2007, New Orleans is now known for the devastating impacts it withstood during the onslaught of Hurricane Katrina in late August 2005. Eighty percent of the city was submerged under flood waters. Almost two years have passed, and many individuals and government agencies are still coping with the hurricane's consequences. And insurance companies have been withdrawing their coverage for the region. The 2005 hurricane season set a record, in the sense that there were 28 named storms that calendar year. For the first time in hurricane forecast history, hurricane forecasters had to resort to the use of Greek letters to name tropical storms in the Atlantic and Gulf (Fig.~1). Hurricane Katrina was a Category 5 hurricane when it was in the middle of the Gulf of Mexico, after having passed across southern Florida. At landfall, Katrina's winds decreased in speed and it was relabeled as a Category 4. It devolved into a Category 3 hurricane as it passed inland when it did most of its damage. Large expanses of the city were inundated, many parts under water on the order of 20 feet or so. The Ninth Ward, heavily
Kinoshita, A. M.; Hogue, T. S.
Much of the western U.S. is increasingly susceptible to wildfire activity due to drier conditions, elevated fuel loads, and expanding urbanization. As population increases, development pushes the urban boundary further into wildlands, creating more potential for human interaction at the wildland-urban interface (WUI), primarily from human ignitions and fire suppression policies. The immediate impacts of wildfires include vulnerability to debris flows, flooding, and impaired water quality. Fires also alter longer-term hydrological and ecosystem behavior. The current study utilizes geospatial datasets to investigate historical wildfire size and frequency relative to the WUI for a range of cities across western North America. California, the most populous state in the U.S., has an extensive fire history. The decennial population and acres burned for four major counties (Los Angeles, San Bernardino, San Diego, and Shasta) in California show that increasing wildfire size and frequency follow urbanization trends, with high correlation between the last decade of burned area, urban-fringe proximity, and increasing population. Ultimately, results will provide information on urban fringe communities that are most vulnerable to the risks associated with wildfire and post-fire impacts. In light of evolving land use policies (i.e. forest management and treatment, development at the urban-fringe) and climate change, it is critical to advance our knowledge of the implications that these conditions pose to urban centers, communicate risks to the public, and ultimately provide guidance for wildfire management.
Counts, C S
Charleston, South Carolina was the recent victim of Hurricane Hugo. This article recalls the events that occurred before, during, and after the hurricane struck. The focus is on four outpatient dialysis units in that area. It is a story from which others may learn more about emergency preparedness.
Hurricanes are one of Mother Natureâs most powerful forces. Host Bret Atkins talks with CDCâs National Center for Environmental Health Director Dr. Chris Portier about the main threats of a hurricane and how you can prepare.
Foppa, Ivo M; Evans, Christopher L; Wozniak, Arthur; Wills, William
Hurricane Katrina caused massive destruction and flooding along the Gulf Coast in August 2005. We collected mosquitoes and tested them for arboviral infection in a severely hurricane-damaged community to determine species composition and to assess the risk of a mosquito-borne epidemic disease in that community about 6 wk after the landfall of Hurricane Katrina. Light-trap collections yielded 8,215 mosquitoes representing 19 species, while limited gravid-trap collections were not productive. The most abundant mosquito species was Culex nigripalpus, which constituted 73.6% of all specimens. No arboviruses were detected in any of the mosquitoes collected in this survey, which did not support the assertion that human risk for arboviral infection was increased in the coastal community 6 wk after the hurricane.
Full Text Available ... Information on Specific Types of Emergencies Situation Awareness Hurricanes Wildfire Flooding Earthquakes Volcanos Winter Weather Recent Outbreaks ... 2007 2006 Natural Disasters and Severe Weather 2016 Hurricane Matthew Radiation Emergencies Chemical Emergencies Bioterrorism Information for ...
Full Text Available ... Situation Awareness Hurricanes Wildfire Flooding Earthquakes Volcanos Winter Weather Recent Outbreaks and Incidents 2017 2016 2015 2014 ... 2009 2008 2007 2006 Natural Disasters and Severe Weather 2016 Hurricane Matthew Radiation Emergencies Chemical Emergencies Bioterrorism ...
Complex geology and variable topography along the 250-kilometer-long Hurricane fault in northwestern Arizona and southwestern Utah combine to create natural conditions that can present a potential danger to life and property. Geologic hazards are of particular concern in southwestern Utah, where the St. George Basin and Interstate-15 corridor north to Cedar City are one of Utah's fastest growing areas. Lying directly west of the Hurricane fault and within the Basin and Range - Colorado Plateau transition zone, this region exhibits geologic characteristics of both physiographic provinces. Long, potentially active, normal-slip faults displace a generally continuous stratigraphic section of mostly east-dipping late Paleozoic to Cretaceous sedimentary rocks unconformably overlain by Tertiary to Holocene sedimentary and igneous rocks and unconsolidated basin-fill deposits. Geologic hazards (exclusive of earthquake hazards) of principal concern in the region include problem soil and rock, landslides, shallow ground water, and flooding. Geologic materials susceptible to volumetric change, collapse, and subsidence in southwestern Utah include; expansive soil and rock, collapse-prone soil, gypsum and gypsiferous soil, soluble carbonate rocks, and soil and rock subject to piping and other ground collapse. Expansive soil and rock are widespread throughout the region. The Petrified Forest Member of the Chinle Formation is especially prone to large volume changes with variations in moisture content. Collapse-prone soils are common in areas of Cedar City underlain by alluvial-fan material derived from the Moenkopi and Chinle Formations in the nearby Hurricane Cliffs. Gypsiferous soil and rock are subject to dissolution which can damage foundations and create sinkholes. The principal formations in the region affected by dissolution of carbonate are the Kaibab and Toroweap Formations; both formations have developed sinkholes where crossed by perennial streams. Soil piping is
McNeely, Stanton Francis, III
Leaders of many institutions of higher education are not equipped to manage a major crisis or disaster, and presidential leadership during a disaster is essential, as university presidents are ultimately accountable for the well-being of their institutions. Hurricane Katrina devastated New Orleans in 2005, flooding 80% of the city for many weeks…
Wang, Hongqing; Chen, Qin; Hu, Kelin; Snedden, Gregg A.; Hartig, Ellen K.; Couvillion, Brady R.; Johnson, Cody L.; Orton, Philip M.
The salt marshes of Jamaica Bay, managed by the New York City Department of Parks & Recreation and the Gateway National Recreation Area of the National Park Service, serve as a recreational outlet for New York City residents, mitigate flooding, and provide habitat for critical wildlife species. Hurricanes and extra-tropical storms have been recognized as one of the critical drivers of coastal wetland morphology due to their effects on hydrodynamics and sediment transport, deposition, and erosion processes. However, the magnitude and mechanisms of hurricane effects on sediment dynamics and associated coastal wetland morphology in the northeastern United States are poorly understood. In this study, the depth-averaged version of the Delft3D modeling suite, integrated with field measurements, was utilized to examine the effects of Hurricane Sandy and future potential hurricanes on salt marsh morphology in Jamaica Bay, New York City. Hurricane Sandy-induced wind, waves, storm surge, water circulation, sediment transport, deposition, and erosion were simulated by using the modeling system in which vegetation effects on flow resistance, surge reduction, wave attenuation, and sedimentation were also incorporated. Observed marsh elevation change and accretion from a rod surface elevation table and feldspar marker horizons and cesium-137- and lead-210-derived long-term accretion rates were used to calibrate and validate the wind-waves-surge-sediment transport-morphology coupled model.The model results (storm surge, waves, and marsh deposition and erosion) agreed well with field measurements. The validated modeling system was then used to detect salt marsh morphological change due to Hurricane Sandy across the entire Jamaica Bay over the short-term (for example, 4 days and 1 year) and long-term (for example, 5 and 10 years). Because Hurricanes Sandy (2012) and Irene (2011) were two large and destructive tropical cyclones which hit the northeast coast, the validated coupled
A. Hutton; D. Arenius; J. Benesch; S. Chattopadhyay; E. F. Daly; O. Garza; R. Kazimi; R. Lauzi; L. Merminga; W. Merz; R. Nelson; W. Oren; M. Poelker; P. Powers; J. Preble; V. Ganni; C. R. Reece; R. Rimmer; M. Spata; S. Suhring
Hurricane Isabel, originally a Category 5 storm, arrived at Jefferson Lab on September 18, 2003 with winds of only 75 mph, creating little direct damage to the infrastructure. However, electric power was lost for four days allowing the superconducting cryomodules to warm up and causing a total loss of the liquid helium. The subsequent recovery of the cryomodules and the impact of the considerable amount of opportunistic preventive maintenance provides important lessons for all accelerator complexes, not only those with superconducting elements. The details of how the recovery process was structured and the resulting improvement in accelerator availability will be discussed in detail
Moody, John A.; Shakesby, Richard A.; Robichaud, Peter R.; Cannon, Susan H.; Martin, Deborah A.
Research into post-wildfire effects began in the United States more than 70 years ago and only later extended to other parts of the world. Post-wildfire responses are typically transient, episodic, variable in space and time, dependent on thresholds, and involve multiple processes measured by different methods. These characteristics tend to hinder research progress, but the large empirical knowledge base amassed in different regions of the world suggests that it should now be possible to synthesize the data and make a substantial improvement in the understanding of post-wildfire runoff and erosion response. Thus, it is important to identify and prioritize the research issues related to post-wildfire runoff and erosion. Priority research issues are the need to: (1) organize and synthesize similarities and differences in post-wildfire responses between different fire-prone regions of the world in order to determine common patterns and generalities that can explain cause and effect relations; (2) identify and quantify functional relations between metrics of fire effects and soil hydraulic properties that will better represent the dynamic and transient conditions after a wildfire; (3) determine the interaction between burned landscapes and temporally and spatially variable meso-scale precipitation, which is often the primary driver of post-wildfire runoff and erosion responses; (4) determine functional relations between precipitation, basin morphology, runoff connectivity, contributing area, surface roughness, depression storage, and soil characteristics required to predict the timing, magnitudes, and duration of floods and debris flows from ungaged burned basins; and (5) develop standard measurement methods that will ensure the collection of uniform and comparable runoff and erosion data. Resolution of these issues will help to improve conceptual and computer models of post-wildfire runoff and erosion processes.
Kharuk, V.; Ponomarev, E. I.; Antamoshkina, O.
The annual burned area in Russia was estimated as 0.55 to 20 Mha with >70% occurred in Siberia. We analyzed Siberian wildfires distribution with respect to elevation, slope steepness and exposure. In addition, wildfires temporal dynamic and latitudinal range were analyzed. We used daily thermal anomalies derived from NOAA/AVHRR and Terra/MODIS satellites (1990-2016). Fire return intervals were (FRI) calculated based on the dendrochronology analysis of samples taken from trees with burn marks. Spatial distribution of wildfires dependent on topo features: relative burned area increase with elevation increase (ca. 1100 m), switching to following decrease. The wildfires frequency exponentially decreased within lowlands - highlands transition. Burned area is increasing with slope steepness increase (up to 5-10°). Fire return intervals (FRI) on the southfacing slopes are about 30% longer than on the north facing. Wildfire re-occurrence is decreasing exponentially: 90% of burns were caused by single fires, 8.5% by double fires, 1% burned three times, and on about 0.05% territory wildfires occurred four times (observed period: 75 yr.). Wildfires area and number, as well as FRI, also dependent on latitude: relative burned area increasing exponentially in norward direction, whereas relative fire number is exponentially decreasing. FRI increases in the northward direction: from 80 years at 62°N to 200 years at the Arctic Circle, and to 300 years at the northern limit of closed forests ( 71+°N). Fire frequency, fire danger period and FRI are strongly correlated with incoming solar radiation (r = 0.81 - 0.95). In 21-s century, a positive trend of wildfires number and area observed in mountain areas in all Siberia. Thus, burned area and number of fires in Siberia are significantly increased since 1990th (R2 =0.47, R2 =0.69, respectively), and that increase correlated with air temperatures and climate aridity increases. However, wildfires are essential for supporting fire
Nina S N Lam
Full Text Available We analyzed the business reopening process in New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina, which hit the region on August 29, 2005, to better understand what the major predictors were and how their impacts changed through time. A telephone survey of businesses in New Orleans was conducted in October 2007, 26 months after Hurricane Katrina. The data were analyzed using a modified spatial probit regression model to evaluate the importance of each predictor variable through time. The results suggest that the two most important reopening predictors throughout all time periods were the flood depth at the business location and business size as represented by its wages in a logarithmic form. Flood depth was a significant negative predictor and had the largest marginal effects on the reopening probabilities. Smaller businesses had lower reopening probabilities than larger ones. However, the nonlinear response of business size to the reopening probability suggests that recovery aid would be most effective for smaller businesses than for larger ones. The spatial spillovers effect was a significant positive predictor but only for the first nine months. The findings show clearly that flood protection is the overarching issue for New Orleans. A flood protection plan that reduces the vulnerability and length of flooding would be the first and foremost step to mitigate the negative effects from climate-related hazards and enable speedy recovery. The findings cast doubt on the current coastal protection efforts and add to the current debate of whether coastal Louisiana will be sustainable or too costly to protect from further land loss and flooding given the threat of sea-level rise. Finally, a plan to help small businesses to return would also be an effective strategy for recovery, and the temporal window of opportunity that generates the greatest impacts would be the first 6∼9 months after the disaster.
Lam, Nina S N; Arenas, Helbert; Pace, Kelley; LeSage, James; Campanella, Richard
We analyzed the business reopening process in New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina, which hit the region on August 29, 2005, to better understand what the major predictors were and how their impacts changed through time. A telephone survey of businesses in New Orleans was conducted in October 2007, 26 months after Hurricane Katrina. The data were analyzed using a modified spatial probit regression model to evaluate the importance of each predictor variable through time. The results suggest that the two most important reopening predictors throughout all time periods were the flood depth at the business location and business size as represented by its wages in a logarithmic form. Flood depth was a significant negative predictor and had the largest marginal effects on the reopening probabilities. Smaller businesses had lower reopening probabilities than larger ones. However, the nonlinear response of business size to the reopening probability suggests that recovery aid would be most effective for smaller businesses than for larger ones. The spatial spillovers effect was a significant positive predictor but only for the first nine months. The findings show clearly that flood protection is the overarching issue for New Orleans. A flood protection plan that reduces the vulnerability and length of flooding would be the first and foremost step to mitigate the negative effects from climate-related hazards and enable speedy recovery. The findings cast doubt on the current coastal protection efforts and add to the current debate of whether coastal Louisiana will be sustainable or too costly to protect from further land loss and flooding given the threat of sea-level rise. Finally, a plan to help small businesses to return would also be an effective strategy for recovery, and the temporal window of opportunity that generates the greatest impacts would be the first 6∼9 months after the disaster.
L.A. Hermansen-Baez; J.P. Prestemon; D.T. Butry; K.L. Abt; R. Sutphen
While there are many activities that can limit damages from wildfires, such as firefighting efforts and prescribed burning, wildfire prevention education programs can be particularly beneficial. This was confirmed through a study conducted by the Southern Research Station and the National Institute of Standards and Technology that demonstrated that wildfire prevention...
Jeffrey P. Prestemon; David T. Butry; Karen L. Abt; Ronda Sutphen
Wildfire prevention education efforts involve a variety of methods, including airing public service announcements, distributing brochures, and making presentations, which are intended to reduce the occurrence of certain kinds of wildfires. A Poisson model of preventable Florida wildfires from 2002 to 2007 by fire management region was developed. Controlling for...
David T. Butry; Jeffrey P. Prestemon; Karen L. Abt; Ronda Sutphen
We describe how two important tools of wildfire management, wildfire prevention education and prescribed fire for fuels management, can be coordinated to minimise the combination of management costs and expected societal losses resulting from wildland fire. We present a long-run model that accounts for the dynamics of wildfire, the effects of fuels management on...
Hannah Brenkert-Smith; Patricia A. Champ
Wildfire activity continues to plague communities in the American West. Three causes are often identified as key contributors to the wildfire problem: accumulated fuels on public lands due to a history of suppressing wildfires; climate change; and an influx of residents into fire prone areas referred to as the wildland-urban interface (WUI). The latter of these...
Hannah Brenkert-Smith; Patricia A. Champ; Amy L. Telligman
Wildfire activity continues to plague communities in the American West. Three causes are often identified as key contributors to the wildfire problem: accumulated fuels on public lands due to a history of suppressing wildfires; climate change; and an influx of residents into fire prone areas referred to as the wildland-urban interface (WUI). The latter of these...
Patricia Champ; Geoffrey Donovan; Christopher Barth
In the last 20 years, wildfire damages and the costs of wildfire suppression have risen dramatically. This trend has been attributed to three main factors: climate change, increased fuel loads from a century of wildfire suppression, and increased housing development in fire-prone areas., There is little that fire managers can do about climate change, and current fuel...
Hannah Brenkert; Patricia Champ; Nicholas Flores
In-depth interviews conducted with homeowners in Larimer County's Wildland-Urban Interface revealed that homeowners face difficult decisions regarding the implementation of wildfire mitigation measures. Perceptions of wildfire mitigation options may be as important as perceptions of wildfire risk in determining likelihood of implementation. These mitigation...
Hurricane season in the eastern Pacific started off with a whimper late last month as Alma, a Category 2 hurricane, slowly made its way up the coast of Baja California, packing sustained winds of 110 miles per hour and gusts of 135 miles per hour. The above image of the hurricane was acquired on May 29, 2002, and displays the rainfall rates occurring within the storm. Click the image above to see an animated data visualization (3.8 MB) of the interior of Hurricane Alma. The images of the clouds seen at the beginning of the movie were retrieved from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Association's (NOAA's) Geostationary Orbiting Environmental Satellite (GOES) network. As the movie continues, the clouds are peeled away to reveal an image of rainfall levels in the hurricane. The rainfall data were obtained by the Precipitation Radar aboard NASA's Tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission (TRMM) satellite. The Precipitation Radar bounces radio waves off of clouds to retrieve a reading of the number of large, rain-sized droplets within the clouds. Using these data, scientists can tell how much precipitation is occurring within and beneath a hurricane. In the movie, yellow denotes areas where 0.5 inches of rain is falling per hour, green denotes 1 inch per hour, and red denotes over 2 inches per hour. (Please note that high resolution still images of Hurricane Alma are available in the NASA Visible Earth in TIFF format.) Image and animation courtesy Lori Perkins, NASA Goddard Space Flight Center Scientific Visualization Studio
National Aeronautics and Space Administration — The Hurricane and Severe Storm Sentinel (HS3) Hurricane Imaging Radiometer (HIRAD) was collected by the Hurricane Imaging Radiometer (HIRAD), which was a multi-band...
Erin S Finzer
Full Text Available Beginning with Rubén Darío, Nicaragua has long prided itself in being a country of poets. During the Sandinista Revolution, popular poetry workshops dispatched by Minister of Culture Ernesto Cardenal taught peasants and soldiers to write poetry about everyday life and to use poetry as a way to work through trauma from the civil war. When Hurricane Mitch--one of the first superstorms that heralded climate change--brought extreme flooding to Nicaragua in 1998, poetry again served as a way for victims to process the devastation. Examining testimonial poetry from Hurricane Mitch, this article shows how the mud and despair of this environmental disaster function as palimpsests of conquest and imperial oppression.
Gill, A Malcolm; Stephens, Scott L; Cary, Geoffrey J
The worldwide "wildfire" problem is headlined by the loss of human lives and homes, but it applies generally to any adverse effects of unplanned fires, as events or regimes, on a wide range of environmental, social, and economic assets. The problem is complex and contingent, requiring continual attention to the changing circumstances of stakeholders, landscapes, and ecosystems; it occurs at a variety of temporal and spatial scales. Minimizing adverse outcomes involves controlling fires and fire regimes, increasing the resistance of assets to fires, locating or relocating assets away from the path of fires, and, as a probability of adverse impacts often remains, assisting recovery in the short-term while promoting the adaptation of societies in the long-term. There are short- and long-term aspects to each aspect of minimization. Controlling fires and fire regimes may involve fire suppression and fuel treatments such as prescribed burning or non-fire treatments but also addresses issues associated with unwanted fire starts like arson. Increasing the resistance of assets can mean addressing the design and construction materials of a house or the use of personal protective equipment. Locating or relocating assets can mean leaving an area about to be impacted by fire or choosing a suitable place to live; it can also mean the planning of land use. Assisting recovery and promoting adaptation can involve insuring assets and sharing responsibility for preparedness for an event. There is no single, simple, solution. Perverse outcomes can occur. The number of minimizing techniques used, and the breadth and depth of their application, depends on the geographic mix of asset types. Premises for policy consideration are presented.
Richard Hallett; Michelle L. Johnson; Nancy F. Sonti
Hurricane Sandy was the second costliest hurricane in United States (U.S.) history. The category 2 storm hit New York City (NYC) on the evening of October 29, 2012, causing major flooding, wind damage, and loss of life. The New York City Department of Parks & Recreation (NYC Parks) documented over 20,000 fallen street trees due to the physical impact of wind...
Farris, G. S.; Smith, G.J.; Crane, M.P.; Demas, C.R.; Robbins, L.L.; Lavoie, D.L.
This report is designed to give a view of the immediate response of the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) to four major hurricanes of 2005: Dennis, Katrina, Rita, and Wilma. Some of this response took place days after the hurricanes; other responses included fieldwork and analysis through the spring. While hurricane science continues within the USGS, this overview of work following these hurricanes reveals how a Department of the Interior bureau quickly brought together a diverse array of its scientists and technologies to assess and analyze many hurricane effects. Topics vary from flooding and water quality to landscape and ecosystem impacts, from geotechnical reconnaissance to analyzing the collapse of bridges and estimating the volume of debris. Thus, the purpose of this report is to inform the American people of the USGS science that is available and ongoing in regard to hurricanes. It is the hope that such science will help inform the decisions of those citizens and officials tasked with coastal restoration and planning for future hurricanes. Chapter 1 is an essay establishing the need for science in building a resilient coast. The second chapter includes some hurricane facts that provide hurricane terminology, history, and maps of the four hurricanes’ paths. Chapters that follow give the scientific response of USGS to the storms. Both English and metric measurements are used in the articles in anticipation of both general and scientific audiences in the United States and elsewhere. Chapter 8 is a compilation of relevant ongoing and future hurricane work. The epilogue marks the 2-year anniversary of Hurricane Katrina. An index of authors follows the report to aid in finding articles that are cross-referenced within the report. In addition to performing the science needed to understand the effects of hurricanes, USGS employees helped in the rescue of citizens by boat and through technology by “geoaddressing” 911 calls after Katrina and Rita so that other
Matkins, Juanita Jo; Murphy, Denise
Reviews 30 weather-related Web sites, including readability level, under the subjects of air pressure, bad meteorology, clouds, droughts, floods, hurricanes, lightning, seasons, temperature, thunderstorms, tornadoes, water cycle, weather instruments, weather on other planets, and wind. (LRW)
This paper reports that reports of damage by Hurricane Andrew escalated last week as operators stepped up inspections of oil and gas installations in the Gulf of Mexico. By midweek, companies operating in the gulf and South Louisiana were beginning to agree that earlier assessments of damage only scratched the surface. Damage reports included scores of lost, toppled, or crippled platforms, pipeline ruptures, and oil slicks. By midweek the U.S. coast Guard had received reports of 79 oil spills. Even platforms capable of resuming production in some instances were begin curtailed because of damaged pipelines. Offshore service companies the another 2-4 weeks could be needed to fully assess Andrew's wrath. Lack of personnel and equipment was slowing damage assessment and repair
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — The Hurricane Satellite (HURSAT) from Microwave (MW) observations of tropical cyclones worldwide data consist of raw satellite observations. The data derive from the...
The file geodatabase (fgdb) contains the Sea, Lake, and Overland Surge from Hurricanes (SLOSH) Maximum of Maximums (MOM) model for hurricane categories 2 and 4. The EPA Office of Research & Development (ORD) modified the original model from NOAA to fit the model parameters for the Buzzards Bay region. The models show storm surge extent for the Mattapoisett area and therefore the flooding area was reduced to the study area. Areas of flooding that were not connected to the main water body were removed. The files in the geodatabase are:Cat2_SLR0_Int_Feet_dissolve_Mattapoisett: Current Category 2 hurricane with 0 ft sea level riseCat4_SLR0_Int_Feet_dissolve_Mattapoisett: Current Category 4 hurricane with 0 ft sea level riseCat4_SLR4_Int_Feet_dissolve_Mattapoisett: Future Category 4 hurricane with 4 feet sea level riseThe features support the Weather Ready Mattapoisett story map, which can be accessed via the following link:https://epa.maps.arcgis.com/apps/MapJournal/index.html?appid=1ff4f1d28a254cb689334799d94b74e2
Timothy E. Reinhardt; Roger D. Ottmar
Smoke exposure measurements among firefighters at wildfires in the Western United States between 1992 and 1995 showed that altogether most exposures were not significant, between 3 and 5 percent of the shift-average exposures exceeded occupational exposure limits for carbon monoxide and respiratory irritants. Exposure to benzene and total suspended particulate was not...
Peter R. Robichaud; William J. Elliot
Erosion in the first year after a wildfire can be up to three orders of magnitude greater than the erosion from undisturbed forests. To mitigate potential postfire erosion, various erosion control treatments are applied on highly erodible areas with downstream resources in need of protection. Because postfire erosion rates generally decline by an order of magnitude for...
Gotham, Kevin Fox; Campanella, Richard; Lauve-Moon, Katie; Powers, Bradford
This article investigates the determinants of flood risk perceptions in New Orleans, Louisiana (United States), a deltaic coastal city highly vulnerable to seasonal nuisance flooding and hurricane-induced deluges and storm surges. Few studies have investigated the influence of hazard experience, geophysical vulnerability (hazard proximity), and risk perceptions in cities undergoing postdisaster recovery and rebuilding. We use ordinal logistic regression techniques to analyze experiential, geophysical, and sociodemographic variables derived from a survey of 384 residents in seven neighborhoods. We find that residents living in neighborhoods that flooded during Hurricane Katrina exhibit higher levels of perceived risk than those residents living in neighborhoods that did not flood. In addition, findings suggest that flood risk perception is positively associated with female gender, lower income, and direct flood experiences. In conclusion, we discuss the implications of these findings for theoretical and empirical research on environmental risk, flood risk communication strategies, and flood hazards planning. © 2017 Society for Risk Analysis.
Van Oldenborgh, Geert Jan; Van Der Wiel, Karin; Sebastian, A.G.; Singh, Roop; Arrighi, Julie; Otto, Friederike; Haustein, Karsten; Li, Sihan; Vecchi, Gabriel; Cullen, Heidi
During August 25-30, 2017, Hurricane Harvey stalled over Texas and caused extreme precipitation, particularly over Houston and the surrounding area on August 26-28. This resulted in extensive flooding with over 80 fatalities and large economic costs. It was an extremely rare event: the return period of the highest observed three-day precipitation amount, 1043.4 mm 3dy-1 at Baytown, is more than 9000 years (97.5% one-sided confidence interval) and return periods exceeded 1000 yr (750 mm 3dy-1)...
Bennett, Joan W.
In the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, the levees protecting New Orleans, Louisiana failed. Because approximately 80% of the city was under sea level, widespread flooding ensued. As a resident of New Orleans who had evacuated before the storm and a life-long researcher on filamentous fungi, I had known what to expect. After the hurricane I traveled home with a suitcase full of Petri dishes and sampling equipment so as to study the fungi that were “eating my house.” Not only were surfaces cove...
Wildfires have been a major factor in the development and management of the world's forest. An accurate assessment of wildfire status is imperative for fire management. This thesis is dedicated to the topic of utilizing multiple unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) to cooperatively monitor a large-scale wildfire. This is achieved through wildfire spreading situation estimation based on on-line measurements and wise cooperation strategy to ensure efficiency. First, based on the understanding of the physical characteristics of the wildfire propagation behavior, a wildfire model and a Kalman filter-based method are proposed to estimate the wildfire rate of spread and the fire front contour profile. With the enormous on-line measurements from on-board sensors of UAVs, the proposed method allows a wildfire monitoring mission to benefit from on-line information updating, increased flexibility, and accurate estimation. An independent wildfire simulator is utilized to verify the effectiveness of the proposed method. Second, based on the filter analysis, wildfire spreading situation and vehicle dynamics, the influence of different cooperation strategies of UAVs to the overall mission performance is studied. The multi-UAV cooperation problem is formulated in a distributed network. A consensus-based method is proposed to help address the problem. The optimal cooperation strategy of UAVs is obtained through mathematical analysis. The derived optimal cooperation strategy is then verified in an independent fire simulation environment to verify its effectiveness.
Philip M. Orton
Full Text Available Here, we demonstrate that reductions in the depth of inlets or estuary channels can be used to reduce or prevent coastal flooding. A validated hydrodynamic model of Jamaica Bay, New York City (NYC, is used to test nature-based adaptation measures in ameliorating flooding for NYC's two largest historical coastal flood events. In addition to control runs with modern bathymetry, three altered landscape scenarios are tested: (1 increasing the area of wetlands to their 1879 footprint and bathymetry, but leaving deep shipping channels unaltered; (2 shallowing all areas deeper than 2 m in the bay to be 2 m below Mean Low Water; (3 shallowing only the narrowest part of the inlet to the bay. These three scenarios are deliberately extreme and designed to evaluate the leverage each approach exerts on water levels. They result in peak water level reductions of 0.3%, 15%, and 6.8% for Hurricane Sandy, and 2.4%, 46% and 30% for the Category-3 hurricane of 1821, respectively (bay-wide averages. These results suggest that shallowing can provide greater flood protection than wetland restoration, and it is particularly effective at reducing "fast-pulse" storm surges that rise and fall quickly over several hours, like that of the 1821 storm. Nonetheless, the goal of flood mitigation must be weighed against economic, navigation, and ecological needs, and practical concerns such as the availability of sediment.
Forest fires in the Euro-Mediterranean region burn about 450,000 ha each year. In Israel, the frequency and extent of wildfires have been steadily increasing over the past decades, culminating in several large and costly fires in 2010, 2012 and 2016. The extensive development of forest areas since the 1950's and the accumulation of fuel in the forests, has led to increased occurrences of high intensity fires. Land-use changes and human population growth are the most prevailing and common determinant of wildfire occurrence and impacts. Climate extremes, possibly already a sign of regional climate change, are another frequent determinant of increasing wildfire risk. Therefore, the combination of extreme dry spells, high fuel loads and increased anthropogenic pressure on the open spaces result in an overall amplified wildfire risk. These fires not only cause loss of life and damage to properties but also carry serious environmental repercussions. Combustion of standing vegetation and the leaf litter leave the soil bare and vulnerable to runoff and erosion, thereby increasing risks of flooding. Today, all of Israel's open spaces, forests, natural parks, major metropolitan centers, towns and villages are embedded within the wildland urban interface (WUI). Typically, wildfires near or in the WUI occur on uplands and runoff generated from the burned area poses flooding risks in urban and agricultural zones located downstream. Post-fire management aims at reducing associated hazards as collapsing trees and erosion risk. Often the time interval between a major fire and the definition of priority sites is in the order of days-to-weeks since administrative procedures, financial estimates and implementation of post-fire salvage logging operations require time. Defining the magnitude of the burn scar and estimating its potential impact on runoff and erosion must therefore be done quickly. A post-fire burn severity, runoff and erosion model is a useful tool in estimating
Liu, Zhong; Ostrenga, Dana; Leptoukh, Gregory
In order to facilitate Earth science data access, the NASA Goddard Earth Sciences Data Information Services Center (GES DISC) has developed a web prototype, the Hurricane Data Analysis Tool (HDAT; URL: http://disc.gsfc.nasa.gov/HDAT), to allow users to conduct online visualization and analysis of several remote sensing and model datasets for educational activities and studies of tropical cyclones and other weather phenomena. With a web browser and few mouse clicks, users can have a full access to terabytes of data and generate 2-D or time-series plots and animation without downloading any software and data. HDAT includes data from the NASA Tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission (TRMM), the NASA Quick Scatterometer(QuikSCAT) and NECP Reanalysis, and the NCEP/CPC half-hourly, 4-km Global (60 N - 60 S) IR Dataset. The GES DISC archives TRMM data. The daily global rainfall product derived from the 3-hourly multi-satellite precipitation product (3B42 V6) is available in HDAT. The TRMM Microwave Imager (TMI) sea surface temperature from the Remote Sensing Systems is in HDAT as well. The NASA QuikSCAT ocean surface wind and the NCEP Reanalysis provide ocean surface and atmospheric conditions, respectively. The global merged IR product, also known as, the NCEP/CPC half-hourly, 4-km Global (60 N -60 S) IR Dataset, is one of TRMM ancillary datasets. They are globally-merged pixel-resolution IR brightness temperature data (equivalent blackbody temperatures), merged from all available geostationary satellites (GOES-8/10, METEOSAT-7/5 & GMS). The GES DISC has collected over 10 years of the data beginning from February of 2000. This high temporal resolution (every 30 minutes) dataset not only provides additional background information to TRMM and other satellite missions, but also allows observing a wide range of meteorological phenomena from space, such as, hurricanes, typhoons, tropical cyclones, mesoscale convection system, etc. Basic functions include selection of area of
...-Basis Hurricane and Hurricane Missiles AGENCY: Nuclear Regulatory Commission. ACTION: Proposed interim...-ISG-024, ``Implementation of Regulatory Guide 1.221 on Design-Basis Hurricane and Hurricane Missiles....221, ``Design-Basis Hurricane and Hurricane Missiles for Nuclear Power Plants.'' DATES: Submit...
Hurricane Isabel was at category five--the most violent on the Saffir-Simpson scale of hurricane strength--when it began threatening the central Atlantic seaboard of the US. Over the course of several days, precautions against the extreme weather conditions were taken across the Jefferson Lab site in south-east Virginia. On 18 September 2003, when Isabel struck North Carolina's Outer Banks and moved northward, directly across the region around the laboratory, the storm was still quite destructive, albeit considerably reduced in strength. The flood surge and trees felled by wind substantially damaged or even devastated buildings and homes, including many belonging to Jefferson Lab staff members. For the laboratory itself, Isabel delivered an unplanned and severe challenge in another form: a power outage that lasted nearly three-and-a-half days, and which severely tested the robustness of Jefferson Lab's two superconducting machines, the Continuous Electron Beam Accelerator Facility (CEBAF) and the superconducting radiofrequency ''driver'' accelerator of the laboratory's free-electron laser. Robustness matters greatly for science at a time when microwave superconducting linear accelerators (linacs) are not only being considered, but in some cases already being built for projects such as neutron sources, rare-isotope accelerators, innovative light sources and TeV-scale electron-positron linear colliders. Hurricane Isabel interrupted a several-week-long maintenance shutdown of CEBAF, which serves nuclear and particle physics and represents the world's pioneering large-scale implementation of superconducting radiofrequency (SRF) technology. The racetrack-shaped machine is actually a pair of 500-600 MeV SRF linacs interconnected by recirculation arc beamlines. CEBAF delivers simultaneous beams at up to 6 GeV to three experimental halls. An imminent upgrade will double the energy to 12 GeV and add an extra hall for ''quark confinement'' studies. On a smaller scale
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — Hurricane Hugo poster. Multi-spectral image from NOAA-11 captures Hurricane Hugo slamming into South Carolina coast on September 21, 1989. Poster size is 36"x36".
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — Hurricane Isabel poster. Multi-spectral image from NOAA-17 shows Hurricane Isabel making landfall on the North Carolina Outer Banks on September 18, 2003. Poster...
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — Hurricane Wilma poster. Multi-spectral image from NOAA-18 shows Hurricane Wilma exiting Florida off the east Florida coast on October 24, 2005. Poster size is 34"x30".
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — Hurricane Sandy poster. Multi-spectral image from Suomi-NPP shows Hurricane Sandy approaching the New Jersey Coast on October 29, 2012. Poster size is approximately...
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — Hurricane Frances poster. Multi-spectral image from NOAA-17 shows Hurricane Frances over central Florida on September 5, 2004. Poster dimension is approximately...
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — Hurricane Ivan poster. Multi-spectral image from NOAA-16 shows Hurricane Ivan in the Gulf of Mexico on September 15, 2004. Poster size is 34"x30".
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — Hurricane Charley poster. Multi-spectral image from NOAA-17 shows a small but powerful hurricane heading toward southern Florida on August 13, 2004. Poster dimension...
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — Hurricane Jeanne poster. Multi-spectral image from NOAA-16 shows Hurricane Jeanne near Grand Bahama Island on September 25, 2004. Poster size is 34"x30".
(discussion) El NiÃ±o/Southern Oscillation (ENSO) Diagnostic Discussion National Hurricane Preparedness Week in both English and Spanish, featuring NOAA hurricane experts and the FEMA administrator at
S. N. Jonkman
Full Text Available An analysis was made of the loss of life caused by Hurricane Harvey. Information was collected for 70 fatalities that occurred due to the event and were recovered within the first 2 weeks after landfall. Most fatalities occurred due to drowning (81 %, particularly in and around vehicles. Males (70 % and people over 50 years old (56 % were overrepresented in the dataset. More than half of the fatalities occurred in the greater Houston area (n = 37, where heavy rainfall and dam releases caused unprecedented urban flooding. The majority of fatalities were recovered outside the designated 100- and 500-year flood hazard areas.
More and more people are making their homes in woodland settings â in or near forests, rural areas, or remote mountain sites - areas in which wildfires are more likely to occur. Wildfires often begin unnoticed. They spread quickly, igniting brush, trees, and homes. CDC recommends taking steps before, during, and after local wildfires to reduce the effect they have on your life.
Aggett, G. R.; Stone, M.
With Hurricane Irene as an example, this work demonstrates the versatility of NOAA's new National Water Model (NWM) as a tool for analyzing hydrologic hazards before, during, and after events. Hurricane Irene made landfall on the coast of North Carolina on August 27, 2011, and made its way up the East Coast over the next 3 days. This storm caused widespread flooding across the Northeast, where rain totals over 20" and wind speeds of 100mph were recorded, causing loss of life and significant damage to infrastructure. Large portions of New York and Vermont were some of the hardest hit areas. This poster will present a suite of post-processed products, derived from NWM output, that are currently being developed at NOAA's National Water Center in Tuscaloosa, AL. The National Water Model is allowing NOAA to expand its water prediction services to the approximately 2.7 million stream reaches across the U.S. The series of forecasted and real-time analysis products presented in this poster will demonstrate the strides NOAA is taking to increase preparedness and aid response to severe hydrologic events, like Hurricane Irene.
Khare, Shree; Jewson, Stephen
We continue with our program to derive simple practical methods that can be used to predict the number of US landfalling hurricanes a year in advance. We repeat an earlier study, but for a slightly different definition landfalling hurricanes, and for intense hurricanes only. We find that the averaging lengths needed for optimal predictions of numbers of intense hurricanes are longer than those needed for optimal predictions of numbers of hurricanes of all strengths.
Roy, Manojit; Zinck, Richard D.; Bouma, Menno J.; Pascual, Mercedes
Cholera is on the rise globally, especially epidemic cholera which is characterized by intermittent and unpredictable outbreaks that punctuate periods of regional disease fade-out. These epidemic dynamics remain however poorly understood. Here we examine records for epidemic cholera over both contemporary and historical timelines, from Africa (1990-2006) and former British India (1882-1939). We find that the frequency distribution of outbreak size is fat-tailed, scaling approximately as a power-law. This pattern which shows strong parallels with wildfires is incompatible with existing cholera models developed for endemic regions, as it implies a fundamental role for stochastic transmission and local depletion of susceptible hosts. Application of a recently developed forest-fire model indicates that epidemic cholera dynamics are located above a critical phase transition and propagate in similar ways to aggressive wildfires. These findings have implications for the effectiveness of control measures and the mechanisms that ultimately limit the size of outbreaks.
... 7 Agriculture 7 2010-01-01 2010-01-01 false 2005 hurricanes. 701.50 Section 701.50 Agriculture... ADMINISTERED UNDER THIS PART § 701.50 2005 hurricanes. In addition benefits elsewhere allowed by this part, claims related to calendar year 2005 hurricane losses may be allowed to the extent provided for in §§ 701...
Sonja N. Oswalt; Christopher Oswalt; Jeffery Turner
Hurricane Katrina triggered public interest and concern for forests in Mississippi that required rapid responses from the scientific community. A uniform systematic sample of 3,590 ground plots were established and measured in 687 days immediately after the impact of Hurricane Katrina on the Gulf Coast. The hurricane damaged an estimated 521 million trees with more...
Chauhan, A.; Sarkar, S.; Singh, R. P.
The coastal areas have dense onshore and marine observation network and are also routinely monitored by constellation of satellites. The monitoring of ocean, land and atmosphere through a range of meteorological parameters, provides information about the land and ocean surface. Satellite data also provide information at different pressure levels that help to access the development of tropical storms and formation of hurricanes at different categories. Integration of ground, buoys, satellite and model data showing the changes in meteorological parameters during the landfall stages of hurricane Harvey will be discussed. Hurricane Harvey was one of the deadliest hurricanes at the Gulf coast which caused intense flooding from the precipitation. The various observation networks helped city administrators to evacuate the coastal areas, that minimized the loss of lives compared to the Galveston hurricane of 1900 which took 10,000 lives. Comparison of meteorological parameters derived from buoys, ground stations and satellites associated with Harvey and 2005 Katrina hurricane present some of the interesting features of the two hurricanes.
Plondke, D. L.
Hurricane Harvey was the first major hurricane to make landfall in the continental U.S. in 12 years. The next tropical storm in the 2017 Atlantic Hurricane Season was Hurricane Irma, a category 5 storm and the strongest storm to strike the U.S. mainland since Hurricane Wilma in 2005. These two storms were the third and fourth in a sequence of 10 consecutive storms to reach hurricane status in this season that ranks at least seventh among the most active seasons as measured by the Accumulate Cyclone Energy (ACE) index. Assessment of damage from Harvey may prove it to be the costliest storm in U.S. history, approaching $190 billion. Irma was the first category 5 hurricane to hit the Leeward Islands, devastating island environments including Puerto Rico, the Virgin Islands, Barbuda, Saint Barthelemy, and Anguilla with sustained winds reaching at times 185 mph. Together with the two super typhoons of the 2017 Pacific season, Noru and Lan, the two Atlantic hurricanes rank among the strongest, longest-lasting tropical cyclones on record. How many more billions of dollars will be expended in recovery and reconstruction efforts following future mega-disasters comparable to those of Hurricanes Harvey and Irma? Particularly on Caribbean and tropical Pacific islands with specialized and underdeveloped economies, aging and substandard infrastructure often cannot even partially mitigate against the impacts of major hurricanes. The most frequently used measurements of storm impact are insufficient to assess the economic impact. Analysis of the storm tracks and periods of greatest storm intensity of Hurricanes Harvey and Irma, and Super Typhoons Lan and Noru, in spatial relationship with island and coastal administrative regions, shows that rainfall totals, flooded area estimates, and property/infrastructure damage dollar estimates are all quantitative indicators of storm impact, but do not measure the costs that result from lack of storm preparedness and education of residents
Hurricanes are one of Mother Natureâs most powerful forces. Host Bret Atkins talks with CDCâs National Center for Environmental Health Director Dr. Chris Portier about the main threats of a hurricane and how you can prepare. Created: 9/24/2012 by Office of Public Health Preparedness and Response (OPHPR), National Center for Environmental Health (NCEH), and the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR). Date Released: 9/24/2012.
Czajkowski, Jeffrey; Michel-Kerjan, Erwann; Villarini, Gabriele; Smith, James A
In recent years, the United States has been severely affected by numerous tropical cyclones (TCs) which have caused massive damages. While media attention mainly focuses on coastal losses from storm surge, these TCs have inflicted significant devastation inland as well. Yet, little is known about the relationship between TC-related inland flooding and economic losses. Here we introduce a novel methodology that first successfully characterizes the spatial extent of inland flooding, and then quantifies its relationship with flood insurance claims. Hurricane Ivan in 2004 is used as illustration. We empirically demonstrate in a number of ways that our quantified inland flood magnitude produces a very good representation of the number of inland flood insurance claims experienced. These results highlight the new technological capabilities that can lead to a better risk assessment of inland TC flood. This new capacity will be of tremendous value to a number of public and private sector stakeholders dealing with disaster preparedness. (letter)
Ebel, Brian A.
Wildfire can change how soils take in, store, and release water. This study examined differences in how burned and unburned plots on north versus south-facing slope aspects respond to rainfall. The largest wildfire impacts were litter/duff combustion on burned north-facing slopes versus soil-water retention reduction on burned south-facing slopes.Wildfire is one of the most significant disturbances in mountainous landscapes, affecting water supply and ecologic function and setting the stage for natural hazards such as flash floods. The impacts of wildfire can affect the entire hydrologic cycle. Measurements of soil-water content and matric potential in the near surface (top 30 cm) captured the hydrologic state in both burned and unburned hillslopes during the first spring through fall period (1 June–1 Oct. 2011) after the 2010 Fourmile Canyon Fire near Boulder, CO. This time span included different hydrologic periods characterized by cyclonic frontal storms (low-intensity, long duration), convective storms (high-intensity, short duration), and dry periods. In mountainous environments, aspect can also control hydrologic states, so north- vs. south-facing slopes were compared. Wildfire tended to homogenize soil-water contents across aspects and with depth in the soil, yet it also may have introduced an aspect control on matric potential that was not observed in unburned soils. Post-wildfire changes in hydrologic state were observed in south-facing soils, probably reflecting decreased soil-water retention after wildfire. North-facing soils were impacted the most, in terms of hydrologic state, by the loss of water storage in the combusted litter–duff layer and forest canopy, which had provided a large “hydrologic buffering” capacity when unburned. Unsaturated zone measurements showed increased variability in hydrologic states and more rapid state transitions in wildfire-impacted soils. A simple, qualitative analysis suggested that the range of unsaturated
Wolff, D. B.; Petersen, W. A.; Tokay, A.; Marks, D. A.; Pippitt, J. L.; Kirstetter, P. E.
Hurricane Harvey hit the Texas Gulf Coast as a major hurricane on August 25, 2017 before exiting the state as a tropical storm on September 1, 2017. In its wake, it left a flood of historic proportions, with some areas measuring 60 inches of rain over a five-day period. Although the storm center stayed west of the immediate Houston area training bands of precipitation impacted the Houston area for five full days. The National Weather Service (NWS) WSR88D dual-polarimetric radar (KHGX), located southeast of Houston, maintained operations for the entirety of the event. The Harris County Flood Warning System (HCFWS) had 150 rain gauges deployed in its network and seven NWS Automated Surface Observing Systems (ASOS) rain gauges are also located in the area. In this study, we used the full radar data set to retrieve daily and event-total precipitation estimates within 120 km of the KHGX radar for the period August 25-29, 2017. These estimates were then compared to the HCFWS and ASOS gauges. Three different polarimetric hybrid rainfall retrievals were used: Ciffeli et al. 2011; Bringi et al. 2004; and, Chen et al. 2017. Each of these hybrid retrievals have demonstrated robust performance in the past. However, both daily and event-total comparisons from each of these retrievals compared to those of HCFWS and ASOS rain gauge networks resulted in significant underestimates by the radar retrievals. These radar underestimates are concerning. Sources of error and variance will be investigated to understand the source of radar-gauge disagreement. One current hypothesis is that due to the large number of small drops often found in hurricanes, the differential reflectivity and specific differential phase are relatively small so that the hybrid algorithms use only the reflectivity/rain rate procedure (so called Z-R relationships), and hence rarely invoke the ZDR or KDP procedures. Thus, an alternative Z-R relationship must be invoked to retrieve accurate rain rate estimates.
Mikesell, J.; Kinoshita, A. M.; Florsheim, J. L.; Chin, A.; Nourbakhshbeidokhti, S.
Wildfire is a landscape-scale disturbance that often alters hydrological processes and sediment flux during subsequent storms. Vegetation loss from wildfires induce changes to sediment supply such as channel erosion and sedimentation and streamflow magnitude or flooding. These changes enhance downstream hazards, threatening human populations and physical aquatic habitat over various time scales. Using Williams Canyon, a basin burned by the Waldo Canyon Fire (2012) as a case study, we utilize deterministic and statistical modeling methods (Fourier series and first order Markov chain) to assess pre- and post-fire geomorphic and hydrologic characteristics, including of precipitation, enhanced vegetation index (EVI, a satellite-based proxy of vegetation biomass), streamflow, and sediment flux. Local precipitation, terrestrial Light Detection and Ranging (LiDAR) scanning, and satellite-based products are used for these time series analyses. We present a framework to assess variability of periodic and nonperiodic climatic and multivariate trends to inform development of a post-wildfire risk assessment methodology. To establish the extent to which a wildfire affects hydrologic and geomorphic patterns, a Fourier series was used to fit pre- and post-fire geomorphic and hydrologic characteristics to yearly temporal cycles and subcycles of 6, 4, 3, and 2.4 months. These cycles were analyzed using least-squares estimates of the harmonic coefficients or amplitudes of each sub-cycle's contribution to fit the overall behavior of a Fourier series. The stochastic variances of these characteristics were analyzed by composing first-order Markov models and probabilistic analysis through direct likelihood estimates. Preliminary results highlight an increased dependence of monthly post-fire hydrologic characteristics on 12 and 6-month temporal cycles. This statistical and probabilistic analysis provides a basis to determine the impact of wildfires on the temporal dependence of
Paveglio, Travis B; Edgeley, Catrin M; Stasiewicz, Amanda M
A growing body of research focuses on identifying patterns among human populations most at risk from hazards such as wildfire and the factors that help explain performance of mitigations that can help reduce that risk. Emerging policy surrounding wildfire management emphasizes the need to better understand such social vulnerability-or human populations' potential exposure to and sensitivity from wildfire-related impacts, including their ability to reduce negative impacts from the hazard. Studies of social vulnerability to wildfire often pair secondary demographic data with a variety of vegetation and wildfire simulation models to map potential risk. However, many of the assumptions made by those researchers about the demographic, spatial or perceptual factors that influence social vulnerability to wildfire have not been fully evaluated or tested against objective measures of potential wildfire risk. The research presented here utilizes self-reported surveys, GIS data, and wildfire simulations to test the relationships between select perceptual, demographic, and property characteristics of property owners against empirically simulated metrics for potential wildfire related damages or exposure. We also evaluate how those characteristics relate to property owners' performance of mitigations or support for fire management. Our results suggest that parcel characteristics provide the most significant explanation of variability in wildfire exposure, sensitivity and overall wildfire risk, while the positive relationship between income or property values and components of social vulnerability stands in contrast to typical assumptions from existing literature. Respondents' views about agency or government management helped explain a significant amount of variance in wildfire sensitivity, while the importance of wildfire risk in selecting a residence was an important influence on mitigation action. We use these and other results from our effort to discuss updated
Robyn S. Wilson; Sarah M. McCaffrey; Eric. Toman
Throughout the late 19th century and most of the 20th century, risks associated with wildfire were addressed by suppressing fires as quickly as possible. However, by the 1960s, it became clear that fire exclusion policies were having adverse effects on ecological health, as well as contributing to larger and more damaging wildfires over time. Although federal fire...
Kathy Lynn; Wendy Gerlitz
Wildfires and related government roles and responsibilities for federal wildland management are prominent in our national consciousness because of the increased severity in the last decade of fires on and around public lands. In recent years, laws, strategies, and implementation documents have been issued to direct federal efforts for wildfire prevention, firefighting...
Brijesh Thapa; Ignatius Cahyanto; Stephen M. Holland; James D. Absher
The impacts of wildfires on tourism have largely been examined with emphasis on economic losses and recovery strategies. Given the limited research from a demand perspective, this study examined tourist risk perceptions and reactionary behaviors toward wildfires in Florida. Data (N Â¼ 771) was collected among a U.S. sample of non-resident overnight leisure travelers...
D. T. Butry; J. P. Prestemon; K. L. Abt
Public outreach and wildfire education activities have been shown to limit the number of unintentional human-caused ignitions (i.e., 'accidental' wildfires). Such activities include the airing of public service announcements, visiting with homeowners in at-risk areas, distributing informative brochures and flyers, hosting of public forums (with presentations...
N. S. Wagenbrenner; M. J. Germino; B. K. Lamb; R. B. Foltz; P. R. Robichaud
Wind erosion and aeolian transport processes are largely unstudied in the post-wildfire environment, but recent studies have shown that wind erosion can play a major role in burned landscapes. A wind erosion monitoring system was installed immediately following a wildfire in southeastern Idaho, USA to measure wind erosion from the burned area (Figure 1). This paper...
Tricia L. Wurtz; Amy L. Wiita; Nancy S. Weber; David Pilz
Morels are edible, choice wild mushrooms that sometimes fruit prolifically in the years immediately after an area has been burned by wildfire. Wildfires are common in interior Alaska; an average of 708,700 acres burned each year in interior Alaska between 1961 and 2000, and in major fire years, over 2 million acres burned. We discuss Alaska's boreal forest...
This paper reports that the petroleum industry is aiding victims of last month's Hurricane Andrew with cash, clothing, food, water, and other supplies. Cash contributions announced as of last week totaled more than $2.7 million for distribution in South Florida and South Louisiana. Petroleum industry employees were collecting relief items such as bottled water and diapers for distribution in those areas
Azad Wan Hazdy
Full Text Available Flood disaster occurs quite frequently in Malaysia and has been categorized as the most threatening natural disaster compared to landslides, hurricanes, tsunami, haze and others. A study by Department of Irrigation and Drainage (DID show that 9% of land areas in Malaysia are prone to flood which may affect approximately 4.9 million of the population. 2 Dimensional floods routing modelling demonstrate is turning out to be broadly utilized for flood plain display and is an extremely viable device for evaluating flood. Flood propagations can be better understood by simulating the flow and water level by using hydrodynamic modelling. The hydrodynamic flood routing can be recognized by the spatial complexity of the schematization such as 1D model and 2D model. It was found that most of available hydrological models for flood forecasting are more focus on short duration as compared to long duration hydrological model using the Probabilistic Distribution Moisture Model (PDM. The aim of this paper is to discuss preliminary findings on development of flood forecasting model using Probabilistic Distribution Moisture Model (PDM for Kelantan river basin. Among the findings discuss in this paper includes preliminary calibrated PDM model, which performed reasonably for the Dec 2014, but underestimated the peak flows. Apart from that, this paper also discusses findings on Soil Moisture Deficit (SMD and flood plain analysis. Flood forecasting is the complex process that begins with an understanding of the geographical makeup of the catchment and knowledge of the preferential regions of heavy rainfall and flood behaviour for the area of responsibility. Therefore, to decreases the uncertainty in the model output, so it is important to increase the complexity of the model.
Davidson, Rachel A; Nozick, Linda K; Wachtendorf, Tricia; Blanton, Brian; Colle, Brian; Kolar, Randall L; DeYoung, Sarah; Dresback, Kendra M; Yi, Wenqi; Yang, Kun; Leonardo, Nicholas
This article introduces a new integrated scenario-based evacuation (ISE) framework to support hurricane evacuation decision making. It explicitly captures the dynamics, uncertainty, and human-natural system interactions that are fundamental to the challenge of hurricane evacuation, but have not been fully captured in previous formal evacuation models. The hazard is represented with an ensemble of probabilistic scenarios, population behavior with a dynamic decision model, and traffic with a dynamic user equilibrium model. The components are integrated in a multistage stochastic programming model that minimizes risk and travel times to provide a tree of evacuation order recommendations and an evaluation of the risk and travel time performance for that solution. The ISE framework recommendations offer an advance in the state of the art because they: (1) are based on an integrated hazard assessment (designed to ultimately include inland flooding), (2) explicitly balance the sometimes competing objectives of minimizing risk and minimizing travel time, (3) offer a well-hedged solution that is robust under the range of ways the hurricane might evolve, and (4) leverage the substantial value of increasing information (or decreasing degree of uncertainty) over the course of a hurricane event. A case study for Hurricane Isabel (2003) in eastern North Carolina is presented to demonstrate how the framework is applied, the type of results it can provide, and how it compares to available methods of a single scenario deterministic analysis and a two-stage stochastic program. © 2018 Society for Risk Analysis.
Zou, L.; Lam, N.; Cai, H.
Coastal communities are facing multiple threats from natural hazards, such as hurricanes, flooding, and storm surge, and show uneven response and recovery behaviors. To build a sustainable coast, it is critical to understand how coastal hazards affect humans and how to enhance disaster resilience. However, understanding community resilience remains challenging, due to the lack of real-time data describing community's response and recovery behaviors during disasters. Public discussion through social media platforms provides an opportunity to understand these behaviors by categorizing real-time social media data into three main phases of emergency management - preparedness, response, and recovery. This study analyzes the spatial-temporal patterns of Twitter use and content during Hurricane Isaac, which struck coastal Louisiana on August 29, 2012. The study area includes counties affected by Hurricane Isaac in Louisiana and Mississippi. The objectives are three-fold. First, we will compute a set of Twitter indices to quantify the Twitter activities during Hurricane Issac and the results will be compared with those of Hurricane Sandy to gain a better understanding of human response in extreme events. Second, county-level disaster resilience in the affected region will be computed and evaluated using the Resilience Inference Measurement (RIM) model. Third, we will examine the relationship between the geographical and social disparities in Twitter use and the disparities in disaster resilience and evaluate the role of Twitter use in disaster resilience. Knowledge gained from this study could provide valuable insights into strategies for utilizing social media data to increase resilience to disasters.
a large-scale, extended response disaster such as massive floods and landslides produced from hurricanes, it may be necessary for the USAID/OFDA...national power to synergistically leverage their independent capabilities to counter the devastating first, second, and third order effects produced by...humanitarian assistance abroad. The first disaster occurred in March when Costa Rica endured an eruption of the Irazú volcano resulting in
Busalacchi, A. J.
The devastating 2017 Atlantic hurricane season has brought into stark relief how much hurricane forecasts have improved - and how important it is to make them even better. Whereas the error in 48-hour track forecasts has been reduced by more than half, according to the National Hurricane Center, intensity forecasts remain challenging, especially with storms such as Harvey that strengthened from a tropical depression to a Category 4 hurricane in less than three days. The unusually active season, with Hurricane Irma sustaining 185-mph winds for a record 36 hours and two Atlantic hurricanes reaching 150-mph winds simultaneously for the first time, also highlighted what we do, and do not, know about how tropical cyclones will change as the climate warms. The extraordinary toll of Hurricanes Harvey, Irma, and Maria - which may ultimately be responsible for hundreds of deaths and an estimated $200 billion or more in damages - underscores why investments into improved forecasting must be a national priority. At NCAR and UCAR, scientists are working with their colleagues at federal agencies, the private sector, and the university community to advance our understanding of these deadly storms. Among their many projects, NCAR researchers are making experimental tropical cyclone forecasts using an innovative Earth system model that allows for variable resolution. We are working with NOAA to issue flooding, inundation, and streamflow forecasts for areas hit by hurricanes, and we have used extremely high-resolution regional models to simulate successfully the rapid hurricane intensification that has proved so difficult to predict. We are assessing ways to better predict the damage potential of tropical cyclones by looking beyond wind speed to consider such important factors as the size and forward motion of the storm. On the important question of climate change, scientists have experimented with running coupled climate models at a high enough resolution to spin up a hurricane
Flint, K.; Kinoshita, A. M.; Chin, A.; Florsheim, J. L.; Nourbakhshbeidokhti, S.
Wildfire is a landscape-scale disturbance that causes abrupt changes to hydrological responses and sediment flux during subsequent storms. Burning hillslope vegetation during wildfires induces changes to sediment supply and stream flow magnitude. Altered post-fire processes such as channel erosion and sedimentation or flooding enhance downstream hazards that may threaten human populations and physical aquatic habitat over various time scales. Using data from a small drainage basin (Williams Canyon, 4.7 km2) in the Colorado front range burned by the 2012 Waldo Fire as a case study, we investigate post-fire recovery and assess changes in fire-related risks to downstream areas. Our local ground-based precipitation, field measurements, terrestrial Light Detection and Ranging (LiDAR) scanning together with satellite-based remote sensing data (i.e. Landsat) provide a basis for time series analyses of reach-scale erosion and sedimentation response to rainfall patterns as vegetation patterns change following the wildfire. As a first step in quantifying the likelihood and consequences of specific risk scenarios, we examine changes in the combined probability of storm flows and post-fire erosion and sedimentation as vegetation recovers within the study watershed. We explore possible feedbacks and thresholds related to vegetation-hydrology-sediment interactions following wildfire under changing climate regimes. This information is needed to assist in post-fire management to promote sustainability of wildland fluvial systems.
Miller, A.; Jonkman, S. N.; Van Ledden, M.
Since the catastrophic flooding of New Orleans due to Hurricane Katrina in 2005, the city's hurricane protection system has been improved to provide protection against a hurricane load with a 1/100 per year exceedance frequency. This paper investigates the risk to life in post-Katrina New Orleans. In a flood risk analysis the probabilities and consequences of various flood scenarios have been analyzed for the central area of the city (the metro bowl) to give a preliminary estimate of the risk to life in the post-Katrina situation. A two-dimensional hydrodynamic model has been used to simulate flood characteristics of various breaches. The model for estimation of fatality rates is based on the loss of life data for Hurricane Katrina. Results indicate that - depending on the flood scenario - the estimated loss of life in case of flooding ranges from about 100 to nearly 500, with the highest life loss due to breaching of the river levees leading to large flood depths. The probability and consequence estimates are combined to determine the individual risk and societal risk for New Orleans. When compared to risks of other large-scale engineering systems (e.g., other flood prone areas, dams and the nuclear sector) and acceptable risk criteria found in literature, the risks for the metro bowl are found to be relatively high. Thus, despite major improvements to the flood protection system, the flood risk to life of post-Katrina New Orleans is still expected to be significant. Indicative effects of reduction strategies on the risk level are discussed as a basis for further evaluation and discussion.
Full Text Available In wildfire science, spotting refers to non-local creation of new fires, due to downwind ignition of brands launched from a primary fire. Spotting is often mentioned as being one of the most difficult problems for wildfire management, because of its unpredictable nature. Since spotting is a stochastic process, it makes sense to talk about a probability distribution for spotting, which we call the spotting distribution. Given a location ahead of the fire front, we would like to know how likely is it to observe a spot fire at that location in the next few minutes. The aim of this paper is to introduce a detailed procedure to find the spotting distribution. Most prior modelling has focused on the maximum spotting distance, or on physical subprocesses. We will use mathematical modelling, which is based on detailed physical processes, to derive a spotting distribution. We discuss the use and measurement of this spotting distribution in fire spread, fire management and fire breaching. The appendix of this paper contains a comprehensive review of the relevant underlying physical sub-processes of fire plumes, launching fire brands, wind transport, falling and terminal velocity, combustion during transport, and ignition upon landing.
Smallegan, S. M.; Stark, N.; Jafari, N.; Ravichandran, N.; Shafii, I.; Bassal, P.; Figlus, J.
As part of the NSF-funded Geotechnical Extreme Events Reconnaissance (GEER) Association response to Hurricane Harvey, a team of engineers and scientists mobilized to the coastal cities of Texas, USA from 1 to 5 September 2017. Damage to coastal and riverine structures due to erosion by storm surge, waves, and coastal and riverine flooding was assessed in a wide coastal zone between Corpus Christi and Galveston. Making initial landfall near Rockport, Texas on 26 August 2017, Hurricane Harvey was classified as a category 4 hurricane on the Saffir-Simpson scale with wind speeds exceeding 130 mph and an atmospheric pressure of 938 mbar. The storm stalled over the Houston area, pouring 40 inches of rain on an area encompassing more than 3,000 square miles. Hurricane Harvey, which remained a named storm for 117 hours after initial landfall, slowly moved east into the Gulf of Mexico and made final landfall near Cameron, Louisiana on 30 August. The GEER team surveyed sixteen main sites, extending from Mustang Island in the southwest to Galveston in the northeast and as far inland as Rosenburg. In Port Aransas, beach erosion and undercutting along a beach access road near Aransas Pass were observed. Due to several tide gauge failures in this area, the nearest NOAA tide gauge (#8775870 near Corpus Christi) was used to estimate water levels of 1.35 m, approximately 1.0 m above the predicted tide. In Holiday Beach, anchored retaining walls were inundated, causing backside scour along the entire length and exposing the sheetpile wall anchors. Along the Colorado River at the Highway 35 bridge near Bay City, active riverbank failure was observed and a sheet pile wall was found collapsed. Significant sediment deposits lined the vegetated riverbanks. A USGS stream gage recorded gage heights greater than 45 ft, exceeding the flood stage of 44 ft. Fronting a rubblemound seawall in Surfside Beach, a runnel and ridge formation was observed. Nearby at San Luis Pass, infilled scour
Treuer, G.; Bolson, J.
Tropical storms provide fresh water necessary for healthy economies and health ecosystems. Hurricanes, massive tropical storms, threaten catastrophic flooding and wind damage. Sea level rise exacerbates flooding risks from rain and storm surge for coastal communities. Climate change adaptation measures to manage this risk must be implemented locally, but actions at other levels of government and by neighboring communities impact the options available to local municipalities. When working on adaptation local decision makers must balance multiple types of risk: physical or scientifically described risks, legal risks, and political risks. Generating usable or actionable climate science is a goal of the academic climate community. To do this we need to expand our analysis to include types of risk that constrain the use of objective science. Integrating physical, legal, and political risks is difficult. Each requires specific expertise and uses unique language. An opportunity exists to study how local decision makers manage all three on a daily basis and how their risk management impacts climate resilience for communities and ecosystems. South Florida's particular vulnerabilities make it an excellent case study. Besides physical vulnerabilities (low elevation, intense coastal development, frequent hurricanes, compromised ecosystems) it also has unique legal and political challenges. Federal and state property rights protections create legal risks for government action that restricts land use to promote climate adaptation. Also, a lack of cases that deal with climate change creates uncertainty about the nature of these legal risks. Politically Florida is divided ideologically and geographically. The regions in the southeast which are most vulnerable are predominantly Hispanic and under-represented at the state level, where leadership on climate change is functionally nonexistent. It is conventional wisdom amongst water managers in Florida that little climate adaptation
Thornton, James; Desarthe, Jérémy; Naulin, Jean-Philippe; Garnier, Emmanuel; Liu, Ye; Moncoulon, David
On the islands of the French Antilles, the period for which systematic meteorological measurements and historic event loss data are available is short relative to the recurrence intervals of very intense, damaging hurricanes. Additionally, the value of property at risk changes through time. As such, the recent past can only provide limited insight into potential losses from extreme storms in coming years. Here we present some research that seeks to overcome, as far as is possible, the limitations of record length in assessing the possible impacts of near-future hurricanes on insured properties. First, using the archives of the French overseas departments (which included administrative and weather reports, inventories of damage to houses, crops and trees, as well as some meteorological observations after 1950) we reconstructed the spatial patterns of hazard intensity associated with three historical events. They are: i) the 1928 Hurricane (Guadeloupe), ii) Hurricane Betsy (1956, Guadeloupe) and iii) Hurricane David (1979, Martinique). These events were selected because all were damaging, and the information available on each is rich. Then, using a recently developed catastrophe model for hurricanes affecting Guadeloupe, Martinique, Saint-Barthélemy and Saint-Martin, we simulated the hypothetical losses to insured properties that the reconstructed events might cause if they were to reoccur today. The model simulated damage due to wind, rainfall-induced flooding and storm surge flooding. These 'what if' scenarios provided an initial indication of the potential present-day exposure of the insurance industry to intense hurricanes. However, we acknowledge that historical events are unlikely to repeat exactly. We therefore extended the study by producing a stochastic event catalogue containing a large number of synthetic but plausible hurricane events. Instrumental data were used as a basis for event generation, but importantly the statistical methods we applied permit
Guey, Ching N.
Turkey Point completed the IPE in June of 1991. Hurricane Andrew landed at Turkey Point on August 24, 1992. Although the safety related systems, components and structures were not damaged by the Hurricane Andrew, certain nonsafety related components and the neighboring fossil plant sustained noticeable damage. Among the major components that were nonsafety related but would affect the PRA of the plant included the service water pumps and the high tower. This paper discusses the safety and design impact of Hurricane Andrew on Turkey Point Nuclear Power Plant. The risk of hurricanes on the interim and evolving plant configurations are briefly described. The risk of the plant from internal events as a result of damage incurred during Hurricane Andrew are discussed. The design change as the result of Hurricane Andrew and its impact on the PRA are presented. (author)
Kooistra, C. M.; Hall, T. E.; Paveglio, T.; Carroll, M.; Smith, A. M.
), post-fire restoration/seeding efforts, and what the landscape was ';supposed to look like.' Participants with a stronger understanding of the ecological role of fire seemed less concerned about the long-term negative impacts of the fire on the ecological and aesthetic aspects of the changed landscape. Others seemed to focus on the negative aspects, namely that the landscape would never return to ';normal' within their lifetime. Several residents (not interviewed) reportedly moved away because the changes to the landscape were so severe. Of course, most residents stayed, though many mentioned how important the trees in the landscape were to them and that areas burnt by the fire had lost something special. Many respondents also discussed a severe flood shortly after the fire, as well as continued erosion problems due largely to the fire's impacts on the soil and vegetation. These insights about perceptions of changes in the landscape from the fire, floods, and erosion, in terms of expected recovery over spatial and temporal scales will be explored in more detail. We also discuss the implications of these insights for understanding people's attitudes about wildfire management and for communicating about wildfire issues with the public.
Rosenzweig, B.; McPhearson, T.; Rosi, E. J.
While the catastrophic impacts of Hurricane Katrina increased awareness of coastal flood risk, conventional approaches to flood risk assessment do not adequately represent the drivers of flood risk in the unique, highly engineered landscape of dense cities. We review the recent (1996-2016) history of flooding events and current regional climate change projection for 4 diverse coastal cities in the United States: San Juan, Miami, Baltimore and New York. Our review suggests that while all 4 of these cities face increased risk from direct coastal flooding with climate change, pluvial flooding will be an additional, important driver of risk that is currently poorly quantified. Unlike other types of flooding, pluvial flood risk is not limited to a contiguous riverine or coastal floodplain, but is instead driven by interactions between spatially variable geophysical drivers (intense rainfall, shallow groundwater, and influent tidal water), social drivers (patterns of land use) and technical drivers (urban stormwater and coastal infrastructure). We discuss approaches for quantitative assessment of pluvial flood risk, the challenges presented by the lack of data on geophysical flooding drivers in dense cities, and opportunities for integrated research to provide the scientific information needed by practitioners.
Tkachenko, Nataliya; Jarvis, Stephen; Procter, Rob
Increasingly, user generated content (UGC) in social media postings and their associated metadata such as time and location stamps are being used to provide useful operational information during natural hazard events such as hurricanes, storms and floods. The main advantage of these new sources of data are twofold. First, in a purely additive sense, they can provide much denser geographical coverage of the hazard as compared to traditional sensor networks. Second, they provide what physical sensors are not able to do: By documenting personal observations and experiences, they directly record the impact of a hazard on the human environment. For this reason interpretation of the content (e.g., hashtags, images, text, emojis, etc) and metadata (e.g., keywords, tags, geolocation) have been a focus of much research into social media analytics. However, as choices of semantic tags in the current methods are usually reduced to the exact name or type of the event (e.g., hashtags '#Sandy' or '#flooding'), the main limitation of such approaches remains their mere nowcasting capacity. In this study we make use of polysemous tags of images posted during several recent flood events and demonstrate how such volunteered geographic data can be used to provide early warning of an event before its outbreak.
Wehmeyer, Christof; Skourup, Jesper; Frigaard, Peter
Extreme sea states, which the IEC 61400-3 (2008) standard requires for the ultimate limit state (ULS) analysis of offshore wind turbines are derived to establish the design basis for the conceptual layout of deep water floating offshore wind turbine foundations in hurricane affected areas....... Especially in the initial phase of floating foundation concept development, site specific metocean data are usually not available. As the areas of interest are furthermore not covered by any design standard, in terms of design sea states, generic and in engineering terms applicable environmental background...... data is required for a type specific conceptual design. ULS conditions for different return periods are developed, which can subsequently be applied in siteindependent analysis and conceptual design. Recordings provided by National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), of hurricanes along...
More and more people are making their homes in woodland settings â in or near forests, rural areas, or remote mountain sites - areas in which wildfires are more likely to occur. Wildfires often begin unnoticed. They spread quickly, igniting brush, trees, and homes. CDC recommends taking steps before, during, and after local wildfires to reduce the effect they have on your life. Created: 11/1/2007 by Emergency Communications System. Date Released: 11/1/2007.
Hurricane Katrina devastated New Orleans and its suburbs on Monday August 29^th, 2005. The previous Friday morning, August 26, the National Hurricane Center indicated that Katrina was a Category One Hurricane, which was expected to hit Florida. By Friday afternoon, it had changed its course, and neither the city nor Xavier University was prepared for this unexpected turn in the hurricane's path. The university had 6 to 7 ft of water in every building and Xavier was closed for four months. Students and university personnel that were unable to evacuate were trapped on campus and transportation out of the city became a logistical nightmare. Email and all electronic systems were unavailable for at least a month, and all cell phones with a 504 area code stopped working. For the Department, the most immediate problem was locating faculty and students. Xavier created a list of faculty and their new email addresses and began coordinating with faculty. Xavier created a web page with advice for students, and the chair of the department created a separate blog with contact information for students. The early lack of a clear method of communication made worse the confusion and dismay among the faculty on such issues as when the university would reopen, whether the faculty would be retained, whether they should seek temporary (or permanent) employment elsewhere, etc. With the vision and determination of President Dr. Francis, Xavier was able to reopen the university in January and ran a full academic year from January through August. Since Katrina, the university has asked every department and unit to prepare emergency preparedness plans. Each department has been asked to collect e-mail addresses (non-Xavier), cell phone numbers and out of town contact information. The University also established an emergency website to communicate. All faculty have been asked to prepare to teach classes electronically via Black board or the web. Questions remain about the longer term issues of
Taylor, Benjamin S; Fei, Songlin
"Recently in the news, media coverage of flood events has garnered attention due to tropical storms like Hurricane Harvey and the costly damages that resulted. Under climate change, events like sea-level rise (SLR) and flooding are projected to increase which threaten infrastructure, making it necessary for proper planning before, during, and after installation of landfills to mitigate risk. Studies in Austria and the UK have revealed that many landfills are located in flood zones in addition...
Forecasts of a hurricane's intensity are generally much less accurate than forecasts of its most likely path. Large-scale atmospheric patterns dictate where a hurricane will go and how quickly it will get there. The storm's intensity, however, depends on small-scale shifts in atmospheric stratification, upwelling rates, and other transient dynamics that are difficult to predict. Properly understanding the risk posed by an impending storm depends on having a firm grasp of all three properties: translational speed, intensity, and path. Drawing on 40 years of hurricane records representing 3090 different storms, Mei et al. propose that a hurricane's translational speed and intensity may be closely linked.
Andrews, T. A.; Wauthier, C.; Zipp, K.
This study investigates the possibility of creating a mathematical function that enables the estimation of flood-damage costs. We begin by examining the costs associated with past flood events in the United States. The data on these tropical storms and hurricanes are provided by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. With the location, extent of flooding, and damage reparation costs identified, we analyze variables such as: number of inches rained, land elevation, type of landscape, region development in regards to building density and infrastructure, and population concentration. We seek to identify the leading drivers of high flood-damage costs and understand which variables play a large role in the costliness of these weather events. Upon completion of our mathematical analysis, we turn out attention to the 2017 natural disaster of Texas. We divide the region, as we did above, by land elevation, type of landscape, region development in regards to building density and infrastructure, and population concentration. Then, we overlay the number of inches rained in those regions onto the divided landscape and apply our function. We hope to use these findings to estimate the potential flood-damage costs of Hurricane Harvey. This information is then transformed into a hazard map that could provide citizens and businesses of flood-stricken zones additional resources for their insurance selection process.
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Coen, Janice L.; Douglas, Craig C.
Wildland fire behavior, particularly that of large, uncontrolled wildfires, has not been well understood or predicted. Our methodology to simulate this phenomenon uses high-resolution dynamic models made of numerical weather prediction (NWP) models
Fischer, A. Paige; Spies, Thomas A; Steelman, Toddi A; Moseley, Cassandra; Johnson, Bart R.; Bailey, John D.; Ager, Alan A; Bourgeron, Patrick S.; Charnley, Susan; Collins, Brandon M.; Kline, Jeffrey D; Leahy, Jessica E; Littell, Jeremy; Millington, James D. A.; Nielsen-Pincus, Max; Olsen, Christine S; Paveglio, Travis B; Roos, Christopher I.; Steen-Adams, Michelle M; Stevens, Forrest R; Vukomanovic, Jelena; White, Eric M; Bowman, David M J S
Wildfire risk in temperate forests has become a nearly intractable problem that can be characterized as a socioecological “pathology”: that is, a set of complex and problematic interactions among social and ecological systems across multiple spatial and temporal scales. Assessments of wildfire risk could benefit from recognizing and accounting for these interactions in terms of socioecological systems, also known as coupled natural and human systems (CNHS). We characterize the primary social and ecological dimensions of the wildfire risk pathology, paying particular attention to the governance system around wildfire risk, and suggest strategies to mitigate the pathology through innovative planning approaches, analytical tools, and policies. We caution that even with a clear understanding of the problem and possible solutions, the system by which human actors govern fire-prone forests may evolve incrementally in imperfect ways and can be expected to resist change even as we learn better ways to manage CNHS.
EPA and partners are looking at ways to use miniature sensors to monitor air quality near wildfires. Data from these small sensors can complement measurements obtained from more complex regulatory-grade monitors that are stationary.
Wildfire regimes are a leading driver of global environmental change affecting a diverse array of global ecosystems. Particulates and aerosols produced by wildfires are a primary source of air pollution making the early detection and monitoring of wildfires crucial. The objectives of this study were to model regional wildfire potential and identify environmental, topological, and sociological factors that contribute to the ignition of wildfire events in the Western Hindu Kush-Himalayas of South Asia. The environmental, topological, and sociological factors were used to model regional wildfire potential through multi-criteria evaluation using a method of weighted linear combination. Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) and geographic information systems (GIS) data were integrated to analyze regional wildfires and construct the model. Model validation was performed using a holdout cross validation method. The study produced a significant model of wildfire potential in the Western Hindu Kush-Himalayas.; Western Hindu Kush-Himalayas ; Western Hindu Kush-Himalayas Wildfire Potential
Úbeda, Xavier; Sarricolea, Pablo
This paper reviews the literature examining the wildfire phenomenon in Chile. Since ancient times, Chile's wildfires have shaped the country's landscape, but today, as in many other parts of the world, the fire regime - pattern, frequency and intensity - has grown at an alarming rate. In 2014, > 8000 fires were responsible for burning c. 130,000 ha, making it the worst year in Chile's recent history. The reasons for this increase appear to be the increment in the area planted with flammable species; the rejection of these landscape modifications on the part of local communities that target these plantations in arson attacks; and, the adoption of intensive forest management practices resulting in the accumulation of a high fuel load. These trends have left many native species in a precarious situation and forest plantation companies under considerable financial pressure. An additional problem is posed by fires at the wildland urban interface (WUI), threatening those inhabitants that live in Chile's most heavily populated cities. The prevalence of natural fires in Chile; the relationship between certain plant species and fire in terms of seed germination strategies and plant adaptation; the relationship between fire and invasive species; and, the need for fire prevention systems and territorial plans that include fire risk assessments are some of the key aspects discussed in this article. Several of the questions raised will require further research, including just how fire-dependent the ecosystems in Chile are, how the forest at the WUI can be better managed to prevent human and material damage, and how best to address the social controversy that pits the Mapuche population against the timber companies.
Suro, Thomas P.; Deetz, Anna; Hearn, Paul
higher than the previously recorded period-of-record maximum. A comparison of peak storm-tide elevations to preliminary FEMA Coastal Flood Insurance Study flood elevations indicated that these areas experienced the highest recurrence intervals along the coast of New Jersey. Analysis showed peak storm-tide elevations exceeded the 100-year FEMA flood elevations in many parts of Middlesex, Union, Essex, Hudson, and Bergen Counties, and peak storm-tide elevations at many locations in Monmouth County exceeded the 500-year recurrence interval.A level 1 HAZUS (HAZards United States) analysis was done for the counties in New Jersey affected by flooding to estimate total building stock losses. The aggregated total building stock losses estimated by HAZUS for New Jersey, on the basis of the final inundation verified by USGS high-water marks, was almost $19 billion. A comparison of Hurricane Sandy with historic coastal storms showed that peak storm-tide elevations associated with Hurricane Sandy exceeded most of the previously documented elevations associated with the storms of December 1992, March 1962, September 1960, and September 1944 at many coastal communities in New Jersey. This scientific investigation report was prepared in cooperation with FEMA to document flood processes and flood damages resulting from this storm and to assist in future flood mitigation actions in New Jersey.
Thompson, M.; Calkin, D. E.; Hand, M. S.; Kreitler, J.
In this presentation we address federal wildfire risk management largely through the lens of economics, targeting questions related to costs, effectiveness, efficiency, and tradeoffs. Beyond risks to resources and assets such as wildlife habitat, watersheds, and homes, wildfires present financial risk and budgetary instability for federal wildfire management agencies due to highly variable annual suppression costs. Despite its variability, the costs of wildfire management have continued to escalate and account for an ever-growing share of overall agency budgets, compromising abilities to attain other objectives related to forest health, recreation, timber management, etc. Trends associated with a changing climate and human expansion into fire-prone areas could lead to additional suppression costs in the future, only further highlighting the need for an ability to evaluate economic tradeoffs in investments across the wildfire management spectrum. Critically, these economic analyses need to accurately capture the complex spatial and stochastic aspects of wildfire, the inherent uncertainty associated with monetizing environmental impacts of wildfire, the costs and effectiveness of alternative management policies, and linkages between pre-fire investments and active incident management. Investing in hazardous fuels reduction and forest restoration in particular is a major policy lever for pre-fire risk mitigation, and will be a primary focus of our presentation. Evaluating alternative fuel management and suppression policies could provide opportunities for significant efficiency improvements in the development of risk-informed management fire management strategies. Better understanding tradeoffs of fire impacts and costs can help inform policy questions such as how much of the landscape to treat and how to balance investments in treating new areas versus maintaining previous investments. We will summarize current data needs, knowledge gaps, and other factors
Jennifer A Horney
Full Text Available Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs are complex environmental toxicants. Exposure to them has been linked to adverse health outcomes including cancer, as well as diseases of the skin, liver, and immune system. Based on an ongoing community engagement partnership with stakeholder groups and residents, we conducted a small longitudinal study to assess domestic exposure to PAHs among residents of Manchester, an environmental justice neighborhood located in the East End of Houston, TX.In December, 2016, we used fiber wipes to collect samples of household dust from 25 homes in Manchester. Following Hurricane Harvey, in September 2017, we revisited 24 of the 25 homes to collect soil samples from the front yards of the same homes. Wipes and soil were analyzed for the presence of PAHs using gas chromatography-mass spectrometry (GC-MS methods. Principal component analysis plots, heatmaps, and PAH ratios were used to compare pre- and post-Hurricane Harvey samples.While direct comparison is not possible, we present three methods for comparing PAHs found in pre-hurricane fiber wipes and post-hurricane soil samples. The methods demonstrate that the PAHs found before and after Hurricane Harvey are likely from similar sources and that those sources are most likely to be associated with combustion. We also found evidence of redistribution of PAHs due to extreme flooding associated with Hurricane Harvey.Residents of the Manchester neighborhood of Houston, TX, are exposed to a range of PAHs in household dust and outdoor soil. While it was not possible to compare directly, we were able to use several methods to assess detected concentrations, changes in site-specific PAH allocations, and PAH origination. Additional research is needed to identify specific sources of domestic PAH exposure in these communities and continued work involving community members and policy makers should aim to develop interventions to reduce domestic exposure to and prevent negative
Horney, Jennifer A; Casillas, Gaston A; Baker, Erin; Stone, Kahler W; Kirsch, Katie R; Camargo, Krisa; Wade, Terry L; McDonald, Thomas J
Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) are complex environmental toxicants. Exposure to them has been linked to adverse health outcomes including cancer, as well as diseases of the skin, liver, and immune system. Based on an ongoing community engagement partnership with stakeholder groups and residents, we conducted a small longitudinal study to assess domestic exposure to PAHs among residents of Manchester, an environmental justice neighborhood located in the East End of Houston, TX. In December, 2016, we used fiber wipes to collect samples of household dust from 25 homes in Manchester. Following Hurricane Harvey, in September 2017, we revisited 24 of the 25 homes to collect soil samples from the front yards of the same homes. Wipes and soil were analyzed for the presence of PAHs using gas chromatography-mass spectrometry (GC-MS) methods. Principal component analysis plots, heatmaps, and PAH ratios were used to compare pre- and post-Hurricane Harvey samples. While direct comparison is not possible, we present three methods for comparing PAHs found in pre-hurricane fiber wipes and post-hurricane soil samples. The methods demonstrate that the PAHs found before and after Hurricane Harvey are likely from similar sources and that those sources are most likely to be associated with combustion. We also found evidence of redistribution of PAHs due to extreme flooding associated with Hurricane Harvey. Residents of the Manchester neighborhood of Houston, TX, are exposed to a range of PAHs in household dust and outdoor soil. While it was not possible to compare directly, we were able to use several methods to assess detected concentrations, changes in site-specific PAH allocations, and PAH origination. Additional research is needed to identify specific sources of domestic PAH exposure in these communities and continued work involving community members and policy makers should aim to develop interventions to reduce domestic exposure to and prevent negative health outcomes
Clark, Joseph D.; Murrow, Jennifer L.
The Louisiana black bear (Ursus americanus luteolus) is comprised of 3 subpopulations, each being small, geographically isolated, and vulnerable to extinction. Hurricanes Katrina and Rita struck the Louisiana and Mississippi coasts in 2005, potentially altering habitat occupied by this federally threatened subspecies. We used data collected on radio-telemetered bears from 1993 to 1995 and pre-hurricane landscape data to develop a habitat model based on the Mahalanobis distance (D2) statistic. We then applied that model to post-hurricane landscape data where the telemetry data were collected (i.e., occupied study area) and where bear range expansion might occur (i.e., unoccupied study area) to quantify habitat loss or gain. The D2 model indicated that quality bear habitat was associated with areas of high mast-producing forest density, low water body density, and moderate forest patchiness. Cross-validation and testing on an independent data set in central Louisiana indicated that prediction and transferability of the model were good. Suitable bear habitat decreased from 348 to 345 km2 (0.9%) within the occupied study area and decreased from 34,383 to 33,891 km2 (1.4%) in the unoccupied study area following the hurricanes. Our analysis indicated that bear habitat was not significantly degraded by the hurricanes, although changes that could have occurred on a microhabitat level would be more difficult to detect at the resolution we used. We suggest that managers continue to monitor the possible long-term effects of these hurricanes (e.g., vegetation changes from flooding, introduction of toxic chemicals, or water quality changes).
Steven G. McNulty
Recent focus has been given to US forests as a sink for increases in atmospheric carbon dioxide. Current estimates of US Forest carbon sequestration average approximately 20 Tg (i.e. 1012 g) year. However, predictions of forest carbon sequestration often do not include the influence of hurricanes on forest carbon storage. Intense hurricanes...
Matthew J. Wibbenmeyer; Michael S. Hand; David E. Calkin; Tyron J. Venn; Matthew P. Thompson
Federal policy has embraced risk management as an appropriate paradigm for wildfire management. Economic theory suggests that over repeated wildfire events, potential economic costs and risks of ecological damage are optimally balanced when management decisions are free from biases, risk aversion, and risk seeking. Of primary concern in this article is how managers...
Galanter, A.; Cadol, D. D.; Frey, B.; Lohse, K. A.
Large, high severity wildfires greatly alter forest structure, water quality, and soil development/erosion. With increased frequency of such wildfires also follows heavy post-wildfire debris flows and flooding which deliver high loads of sediment and pyrogenic black carbon (PyC) to downstream waterways. The accumulation of PyC is a multi-faceted and dynamic issue in the critical zone. Generated by incomplete combustion of organic matter, PyC (in the form of soot and char) impacts turbidity, biological and chemical oxygen demand, and pH. In addition, PyC has the potential to sequester contaminants and can store carbon over short and long timescales. The impacts of two recent wildfires in Northern New Mexico are studied with the goal of understanding the fluxes and residence times of PyC in post-wildfire, mountainous watersheds. Employing burn severity maps and geospatial data, we selected three sites to collect soil and water samples to characterize PyC: a control, an area impacted by a large, severe burn (2011), and an area impacted by a smaller, less severe burn (2013). By collaborating with researchers at the Jemez Critical Zone Observatory, soil samples are being analyzed and will provide pre-wildfire PyC concentrations for the 2013 burn area. In this study, PyC is treated as both a particulate and a solute that is transported throughout the watershed as well as degraded in soils, surface water and groundwater. We used two black carbon quantification methods: the chemo-thermal oxidation (CTO-375) method to distinguish between soil soot and char, and the benzene polycarboxylic acids (BPCA) method to quantify the total concentrations of PyC in soil and water samples. Preliminary soil data from the CTO-375 method show comparable soot concentrations in the control, 2011, and 2013 burn indicating that the soot is more recalcitrant than char and remains in the watershed long after a wildfire. This data also suggests that the fluxes of black carbon over short time
Gentry, R. C.
The climatological history of hurricane-tornadoes is brought up to date through 1982. Most of the tornadoes either form near the center of the hurricane, from the outer edge of the eyewall outward, or in an area between north and east-southeast of the hurricane center. The blackbody temperatures of the cloud tops which were analyzed for several hurricane-tornadoes that formed in the years 1974, 1975, and 1979, did not furnish strong precursor signals of tornado formation, but followed one of two patterns: either the temperatures were very low, or the tornado formed in areas of strong temperature gradients. Tornadoes with tropical cyclones most frequently occur at 1200-1800 LST, and although most are relatively weak, they can reach the F3 intensity level. Most form in association with the outer rainbands of the hurricane.
Lohmann, D.; Li, S.; Katz, B.; Goteti, G.; Kaheil, Y. H.; Vojjala, R.
The science of catastrophic risk modeling helps people to understand the physical and financial implications of natural catastrophes (hurricanes, flood, earthquakes, etc.), terrorism, and the risks associated with changes in life expectancy. As such it depends on simulation techniques that integrate multiple disciplines such as meteorology, hydrology, structural engineering, statistics, computer science, financial engineering, actuarial science, and more in virtually every field of technology. In this talk we will explain the techniques and underlying assumptions of building the RMS US flood risk model. We especially will pay attention to correlation (spatial and temporal), simulation and uncertainty in each of the various components in the development process. Recent extreme floods (e.g. US Midwest flood 2008, US Northeast flood, 2010) have increased the concern of flood risk. Consequently, there are growing needs to adequately assess the flood risk. The RMS flood hazard model is mainly comprised of three major components. (1) Stochastic precipitation simulation module based on a Monte-Carlo analogue technique, which is capable of producing correlated rainfall events for the continental US. (2) Rainfall-runoff and routing module. A semi-distributed rainfall-runoff model was developed to properly assess the antecedent conditions, determine the saturation area and runoff. The runoff is further routed downstream along the rivers by a routing model. Combined with the precipitation model, it allows us to correlate the streamflow and hence flooding from different rivers, as well as low and high return-periods across the continental US. (3) Flood inundation module. It transforms the discharge (output from the flow routing) into water level, which is further combined with a two-dimensional off-floodplain inundation model to produce comprehensive flood hazard map. The performance of the model is demonstrated by comparing to the observation and published data. Output from
[figure removed for brevity, see original site] Animation About the animation: This simulated view of the potential effects of storm surge flooding on Galveston and portions of south Houston was generated with data from the Shuttle Radar Topography Mission. Although it is protected by a 17-foot sea wall against storm surges, flooding due to storm surges caused by major hurricanes remains a concern. The animation shows regions that, if unprotected, would be inundated with water. The animation depicts flooding in one-meter increments. About the image: The Gulf Coast from the Mississippi Delta through the Texas coast is shown in this satellite image from NASA's Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) overlain with data from the Shuttle Radar Topography Mission (SRTM), and the predicted storm track for Hurricane Rita. The prediction from the National Weather Service was published Sept. 22 at 4 p.m. Central Time, and shows the expected track center in black with the lighter shaded area indicating the range of potential tracks the storm could take. Low-lying terrain along the coast has been highlighted using the SRTM elevation data, with areas within 15 feet of sea level shown in red, and within 30 feet in yellow. These areas are more at risk for flooding and the destructive effects of storm surge and high waves. Data used in this image were acquired by the Shuttle Radar Topography Mission aboard the Space Shuttle Endeavour, launched on Feb. 11, 2000. SRTM used the same radar instrument that comprised the Spaceborne Imaging Radar-C/X-Band Synthetic Aperture Radar (SIR-C/X-SAR) that flew twice on the Space Shuttle Endeavour in 1994. SRTM was designed to collect 3-D measurements of the Earth's surface. To collect the 3-D data, engineers added a 60-meter (approximately 200-foot) mast, installed additional C-band and X-band antennas, and improved tracking and navigation devices. The mission is a cooperative project between NASA, the National Geospatial
Các tờ dữ kiện được cung cấp nơi đây mô tả vai trò của EPA trong việc đáp ứng với bão và cách các chương trình cụ thể cung cấp sự hỗ trợ. The Vietnamese fact sheets provided here describe EPA's role in a hurricane response.
Lin, Shao; Lu, Yi; Justino, John; Dong, Guanghui; Lauper, Ursula
This study describes findings of the impacts of Hurricane Sandy on environmental factors including power outages, air quality, water quality, and weather factors and how these affected mental health during the hurricane. An ecological study was conducted at the county level to describe changes in environmental factors-especially power outages-and their relationships to emergency department (ED) visits for mental health problems by use of a Poisson regression model. We found that many environmental hazards occurred as co-exposures during Hurricane Sandy in addition to flooding. Mental health ED visits corresponded with the peak of maximum daily power blackouts, with a 3-day lag, and were positively associated with power blackouts in Bronx (prevalence ratio [PR]: 8.82, 95% confidence interval [CI]: 1.27-61.42) and Queens (PR: 2.47, 95% CI: 1.05-5.82) counties. A possible dose-response relationship was found between the quantile of maximum blackout percentage and the risk of mental health in the Bronx. We found that multiple co-environmental hazards occurred during Hurricane Sandy, especially power blackouts that mediated this disaster's impacts. The effects of power outage on mental health had large geographic variations and were substantial, especially in communities with low sociodemographic status. These findings may provide new insights for future disaster response and preparedness efforts. (Disaster Med Public Health Preparedness. 2016;10:314-319).
Sinigalliano, C D; Gidley, M L; Shibata, T; Whitman, D; Dixon, T H; Laws, E; Hou, A; Bachoon, D; Brand, L; Amaral-Zettler, L; Gast, R J; Steward, G F; Nigro, O D; Fujioka, R; Betancourt, W Q; Vithanage, G; Mathews, J; Fleming, L E; Solo-Gabriele, H M
Floodwaters in New Orleans from Hurricanes Katrina and Rita were observed to contain high levels of fecal indicator bacteria and microbial pathogens, generating concern about long-term impacts of these floodwaters on the sediment and water quality of the New Orleans area and Lake Pontchartrain. We show here that fecal indicator microbe concentrations in offshore waters from Lake Pontchartrain returned to prehurricane concentrations within 2 months of the flooding induced by these hurricanes. Vibrio and Legionella species within the lake were more abundant in samples collected shortly after the floodwaters had receded compared with samples taken within the subsequent 3 months; no evidence of a long-term hurricane-induced algal bloom was observed. Giardia and Cryptosporidium were detected in canal waters. Elevated levels of fecal indicator bacteria observed in sediment could not be solely attributed to impacts from floodwaters, as both flooded and nonflooded areas exhibited elevated levels of fecal indicator bacteria. Evidence from measurements of Bifidobacterium and bacterial diversity analysis suggest that the fecal indicator bacteria observed in the sediment were from human fecal sources. Epidemiologic studies are highly recommended to evaluate the human health effects of the sediments deposited by the floodwaters.
... 48 Federal Acquisition Regulations System 6 2010-10-01 2010-10-01 true Hurricane plan. 1852.236-73... Hurricane plan. As prescribed in 1836.570(c), insert the following clause: Hurricane Plan (DEC 1988) In the event of a hurricane warning, the Contractor shall— (a) Inspect the area and place all materials...
Bathi, Jejal Reddy; Das, Himangshu S.
Disasters in the form of coastal storms and hurricanes can be very destructive. Preparing for anticipated effects of such disasters can help reduce the public health and economic burden. Identifying vulnerable population groups can help prioritize resources for the most needed communities. This paper presents a quantitative framework for vulnerability measurement that incorporates both socioeconomic and flood inundation vulnerability. The approach is demonstrated for three coastal communities in Mississippi with census tracts being the study unit. The vulnerability results are illustrated as thematic maps for easy usage by planners and emergency responders to assist in prioritizing their actions to vulnerable populations during storm surge and flood disasters. PMID:26907313
McGee, Benton D.; Tollett, Roland W.; Goree, Burl B.
Pressure transducers (sensors) are accurate, reliable, and cost-effective tools to measure and record the magnitude, extent, and timing of hurricane storm surge. Sensors record storm-surge peaks more accurately and reliably than do high-water marks. Data collected by sensors may be used in storm-surge models to estimate when, where, and to what degree stormsurge flooding will occur during future storm-surge events and to calibrate and verify stormsurge models, resulting in a better understanding of the dynamics of storm surge.
Megan J. Lickley
Full Text Available Infrastructure located along the U.S. Atlantic and Gulf coasts is exposed to rising risk of flooding from sea level rise, increasing storm surge, and subsidence. In these circumstances coastal management commonly based on 100-year flood maps assuming current climatology is no longer adequate. A dynamic programming cost–benefit analysis is applied to the adaptation decision, illustrated by application to an energy facility in Galveston Bay. Projections of several global climate models provide inputs to estimates of the change in hurricane and storm surge activity as well as the increase in sea level. The projected rise in physical flood risk is combined with estimates of flood damage and protection costs in an analysis of the multi-period nature of adaptation choice. The result is a planning method, using dynamic programming, which is appropriate for investment and abandonment decisions under rising coastal risk.
Concerned about the rising costs of preparing for and controlling wildfires, you asked us to provide information on how the Forest Service and the Bureau of Land Management manage their wildfire programs...
This paper reports that producers in the Gulf of Mexico and plant operators in South Louisiana last week were checking for damage wrought by Hurricane Andrew. In its wake Andrew left evacuated rigs and platforms in the gulf and shuttered plants across a wide swath of the Gulf Coast. Operations were beginning to return to normal late last week. Not all gulf operators, especially in the central gulf, expected to return to offshore facilities. And even producers able to book helicopters did not expect to be able to fully assess damage to all offshore installations before the weekend. MMS officials in Washington estimated that 37,500 offshore workers were evacuated from 700 oil and gas installations on the gulf's Outer Continental Shelf. Gulf oil and gas wells account for about 800,000 b/d of oil and one fourth of total U.S. gas production. MMS was awaiting an assessment of hurricane damage before estimating how soon and how much gulf oil and gas production would be restored
Ventura, Caterina Gulli
The purpose of the study was to examine hurricane emergency preparedness planning at institutions of higher learning of the Gulf South region following Hurricane Katrina. The problem addressed the impact of Hurricane Katrina on decision-making and policy planning processes. The focus was on individuals that administer the hurricane emergency…
Neville, J.; Emanuel, R. E.
In 2016 Hurricane Matthew brought immense flooding and devastation to the Lumbee (aka Lumber) River basin. Some impacts are obvious, such as deserted homes and businesses, but other impacts, including long-term environmental, are uncertain. Extreme flooding throughout the basin established temporary hydrologic connectivity between aquatic environments and upland sources of nutrients and other pollutants. Though 27% of the basin is covered by wetlands, hurricane-induced flooding was so intense that wetlands may have had no opportunity to mitigate delivery of nutrients into surface waters. As a result, how Hurricane Matthew impacted nitrate retention and uptake in the Lumbee River remains uncertain. The unknown magnitude of nitrate transported into the Lumbee River from surrounding sources may have lingering impacts on nitrogen cycling in this stream. With these potential impacts in mind, we conducted a Lagrangian water quality sampling campaign to assess the ability of the Lumbee River to retain and process nitrogen following Hurricane Matthew. We collected samples before and after flooding and compare first order nitrogen uptake kinetics of both periods. The analysis and comparisons allow us to evaluate the long-term impacts of Hurricane Matthew on nitrogen cycling after floodwaters recede.
Booker, Graham; Torres, Jacob; Guikema, Seth; Sprintson, Alex; Brumbelow, Kelly
Cellular networks serve a critical role during and immediately after a hurricane, allowing citizens to contact emergency services when land-line communication is lost and serving as a backup communication channel for emergency responders. However, due to their ubiquitous deployment and limited design for extreme loading events, basic network elements, such as cellular towers and antennas are prone to failures during adverse weather conditions such as hurricanes. Accordingly, a systematic and computationally feasible approach is required for assessing and improving the reliability of cellular networks during hurricanes. In this paper we develop a new multi-disciplinary approach to efficiently and accurately assess cellular network reliability during hurricanes. We show how the performance of a cellular network during and immediately after future hurricanes can be estimated based on a combination of hurricane wind field models, structural reliability analysis, Monte Carlo simulation, and cellular network models and simulation tools. We then demonstrate the use of this approach for assessing the improvement in system reliability that can be achieved with discrete topological changes in the system. Our results suggest that adding redundancy, particularly through a mesh topology or through the addition of an optical fiber ring around the perimeter of the system can be an effective way to significantly increase the reliability of some cellular systems during hurricanes.
Wibbenmeyer, Matthew J; Hand, Michael S; Calkin, David E; Venn, Tyron J; Thompson, Matthew P
Federal policy has embraced risa management as an appropriate paradigm for wildfire management. Economic theory suggests that over repeated wildfire events, potential economic costs and risas of ecological damage are optimally balanced when management decisions are free from biases, risa aversion, and risa seeking. Of primary concern in this article is how managers respond to wildfire risa, including the potential effect of wildfires (on ecological values, structures, and safety) and the likelihood of different fire outcomes. We use responses to a choice experiment questionnaire of U.S. federal wildfire managers to measure attitudes toward several components of wildfire risa and to test whether observed risa attitudes are consistent with the efficient allocation of wildfire suppression resources. Our results indicate that fire managers' decisions are consistent with nonexpected utility theories of decisions under risa. Managers may overallocate firefighting resources when the likelihood or potential magnitude of damage from fires is low, and sensitivity to changes in the probability of fire outcomes depends on whether probabilities are close to one or zero and the magnitude of the potential harm. © 2012 Society for Risk Analysis.
McLaughlin, Katie A; Berglund, Patricia; Gruber, Michael J; Kessler, Ronald C; Sampson, Nancy A; Zaslavsky, Alan M
We examined patterns and correlates of speed of recovery of estimated posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) among people who developed PTSD in the wake of Hurricane Katrina. A probability sample of prehurricane residents of areas affected by Hurricane Katrina was administered a telephone survey 7-19 months following the hurricane and again 24-27 months posthurricane. The baseline survey assessed PTSD using a validated screening scale and assessed a number of hypothesized predictors of PTSD recovery that included sociodemographics, prehurricane history of psychopathology, hurricane-related stressors, social support, and social competence. Exposure to posthurricane stressors and course of estimated PTSD were assessed in a follow-up interview. An estimated 17.1% of respondents had a history of estimated hurricane-related PTSD at baseline and 29.2% by the follow-up survey. Of the respondents who developed estimated hurricane-related PTSD, 39.0% recovered by the time of the follow-up survey with a mean duration of 16.5 months. Predictors of slow recovery included exposure to a life-threatening situation, hurricane-related housing adversity, and high income. Other sociodemographics, history of psychopathology, social support, social competence, and posthurricane stressors were unrelated to recovery from estimated PTSD. The majority of adults who developed estimated PTSD after Hurricane Katrina did not recover within 18-27 months. Delayed onset was common. Findings document the importance of initial trauma exposure severity in predicting course of illness and suggest that pre- and posttrauma factors typically associated with course of estimated PTSD did not influence recovery following Hurricane Katrina. © 2011 Wiley-Liss, Inc.
Joe Scott; Don Helmbrecht; Matthew P. Thompson; David E. Calkin; Kate Marcille
The occurrence of wildfires within municipal watersheds can result in significant impacts to water quality and ultimately human health and safety. In this paper, we illustrate the application of geospatial analysis and burn probability modeling to assess the exposure of municipal watersheds to wildfire. Our assessment of wildfire exposure consists of two primary...
Michael S. Hand; Matthew J. Wibbenmeyer; Dave Calkin; Matthew P. Thompson
Wildfires present a complex applied risk management environment, but relatively little attention has been paid to behavioral and cognitive responses to risk among public agency wildfire managers. This study investigates responses to risk, including probability weighting and risk aversion, in a wildfire management context using a survey-based experiment administered to...
M. Hurteau; M. North
Sequestered forest carbon can provide a climate change mitigation benefit, but in dry temperate forests, wildfire poses a reversal risk to carbon offset projects. Reducing wildfire risk requires a reduction in and redistribution of carbon stocks, the benefit of which is only realized when wildfire occurs. To estimate the time needed to recover carbon removed and...
Powell, M. D.
With the advancing threat of Sea Level Rise much of the U. S. is in danger of falling into the "protection gap". Residential property flood risk is not yet covered by the insurance market. Many coastal properties are not paying into the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) at premiums commensurate with the risk. This is exasperated by the program being deep in debt, despite only covering a fraction of the potential loss, while windstorm insurance covers up to replacement value. This results in a battle that benefits nobody. Any significant hurricane will include both wind and storm surge perils at the same time and any coastal property has to contend with the risk of damage by both. If you have extensive flood damage your wind storm policy might deny your claim and your flood policy (if you even have one) will in most cases be constrained to a $250,000 limit. Bring on the litigators! Some homeowners will claim that the wind destroyed the home first and then it was carried away by flood waters or pulverized by waves. Insurers might respond that the storm surge did all the damage and deny the claim. We've seen this already following Hurricane Katrina in 2005, and Hurricane Ike in 2008, with thousands of litigation claims and a cottage industry of scientists serving as expert witnesses on both sides of the aisle. Congress responded in 2012 with the Coastal Act, which provided an "unfunded mandate" directing NOAA to provide wind and water level data to FEMA for input to their "Coastal Formula" for attributing loss to wind and water. The results of the formula would then limit the amount paid by the NFIP by subtracting out the wind loss portion. The Texas Windstorm Insurance Association (TWIA) went further by assembling a panel of experts to recommend guidelines for how the state should respond to future hurricane impacting properties on the Texas coast. The expert panel report was released in April of 2016, and TWIA is currently developing a comprehensive
Spruce, Joseph P.; Ross, Kenton W.; Graham, William D.
Hurricane Katrina hit southwestern Mississippi on August 29, 2005, at 9:45 a.m. CDT as a category 3 storm with surges up to approx. 9 m and sustained winds of approx. 120 mph. The hurricane's wind, rain, and flooding devastated several coastal towns, from New Orleans through Mobile. The storm also caused significant damage to infrastructure and vegetation of NASA's SSC (Stennis Space Center). Storm recovery at SSC involved not only repairs of critical infrastructure but also forest damage mitigation (via timber harvests and control burns to reduce fire risk). This presentation discusses an effort to use commercially available high spatial resolution multispectral IKONOS data for vegetation damage assessment, based on data collected over SSC on September 2, 2005.
Ju, Lian; Cheng, Yongcun; Xu, Qing
In this paper, the wind structure of hurricane Helene (2006) over the Atlantic Ocean is investigated from a C-band RADARSAT-1 synthetic aperture radar (SAR) image acquired on 20 September 2006. First, the characteristics, e.g., the center, scale and area of the hurricane eye (HE) are determined. ...... observations from the stepped frequency microwave radiometer (SFMR) on NOAA P3 aircraft. All the results show the capability of hurricane monitoring by satellite SAR. Copyright © 2013 by the International Society of Offshore and Polar Engineers (ISOPE)....
Trumbo, Craig; Lueck, Michelle; Marlatt, Holly; Peek, Lori
This study evaluated how individuals living on the Gulf Coast perceived hurricane risk after Hurricanes Katrina and Rita. It was hypothesized that hurricane outlook and optimistic bias for hurricane risk would be associated positively with distance from the Katrina-Rita landfall (more optimism at greater distance), controlling for historically based hurricane risk and county population density, demographics, individual hurricane experience, and dispositional optimism. Data were collected in January 2006 through a mail survey sent to 1,375 households in 41 counties on the coast (n = 824, 60% response). The analysis used hierarchal regression to test hypotheses. Hurricane history and population density had no effect on outlook; individuals who were male, older, and with higher household incomes were associated with lower risk perception; individual hurricane experience and personal impacts from Katrina and Rita predicted greater risk perception; greater dispositional optimism predicted more optimistic outlook; distance had a small effect but predicted less optimistic outlook at greater distance (model R(2) = 0.21). The model for optimistic bias had fewer effects: age and community tenure were significant; dispositional optimism had a positive effect on optimistic bias; distance variables were not significant (model R(2) = 0.05). The study shows that an existing measure of hurricane outlook has utility, hurricane outlook appears to be a unique concept from hurricane optimistic bias, and proximity has at most small effects. Future extension of this research will include improved conceptualization and measurement of hurricane risk perception and will bring to focus several concepts involving risk communication. © 2011 Society for Risk Analysis.
Full Text Available Automated remote sensing methods have not gained widespread usage for damage assessment after hurricane events, especially for low-rise buildings, such as individual houses and small businesses. Hurricane wind, storm surge with waves, and inland flooding have unique damage signatures, further complicating the development of robust automated assessment methodologies. As a step toward realizing automated damage assessment for multi-hazard hurricane events, this paper presents a mono-temporal image classification methodology that quickly and accurately differentiates urban debris from non-debris areas using post-event images. Three classification approaches are presented: spectral, textural, and combined spectral–textural. The methodology is demonstrated for Gulfport, Mississippi, using IKONOS panchromatic satellite and NOAA aerial colour imagery collected after 2005 Hurricane Katrina. The results show that multivariate texture information significantly improves debris class detection performance by decreasing the confusion between debris and other land cover types, and the extracted debris zone accurately captures debris distribution. Additionally, the extracted debris boundary is approximately equivalent regardless of imagery type, demonstrating the flexibility and robustness of the debris mapping methodology. While the test case presents results for hurricane hazards, the proposed methodology is generally developed and expected to be effective in delineating debris zones for other natural hazards, including tsunamis, tornadoes, and earthquakes.
Reddy, S. R.; Kwembe, T.; Zhang, Z.
We investigated the possible relationship between the large- scale heat fluxes and intensity change associated with the landfall of Hurricane Katrina. After reaching the category 5 intensity on August 28th , 2005 over the central Gulf of Mexico, Katrina weekend to category 3 before making landfall (August 29th , 2005) on the Louisiana coast with the maximum sustained winds of over 110 knots. We also examined the vertical motions associated with the intensity change of the hurricane. The data for Convective Available Potential Energy for water vapor (CAPE), sea level pressure and wind speed were obtained from the Atmospheric Soundings, and NOAA National Hurricane Center (NHC), respectively for the period August 24 to September 3, 2005. We also computed vertical motions using CAPE values. The study showed that the large-scale heat fluxes reached maximum (7960W/m2) with the central pressure 905mb. The Convective Available Potential Energy and the vertical motions peaked 3-5 days before landfall. The large atmospheric vertical motions associated with the land falling hurricane Katrina produced severe weather including thunderstorm, tornadoes, storm surge and floods Numerical model (WRF/ARW) with data assimilations have been used for this research to investigate the model's performances on hurricane tracks and intensities associated with the hurricane Katrina, which began to strengthen until reaching Category 5 on 28 August 2005. The model was run on a doubly nested domain centered over the central Gulf of Mexico, with grid spacing of 90 km and 30 km for 6 hr periods, from August 28th to August 30th. The model output was compared with the observations and is capable of simulating the surface features, intensity change and track associated with hurricane Katrina.
Risser, MD; Wehner, MF
©2017. American Geophysical Union. All Rights Reserved. Record rainfall amounts were recorded during Hurricane Harvey in the Houston, Texas, area, leading to widespread flooding. We analyze observed precipitation from the Global Historical Climatology Network with a covariate-based extreme value statistical analysis, accounting for both the external influence of global warming and the internal influence of El Niño–Southern Oscillation. We find that human-induced climate change likely increase...
Salis, Michele; Ager, Alan A.; Arca, Bachisio; Finney, Mark A.; Alcasena, Fermin; Bacciu, Valentina; Duce, Pierpaolo; Munoz Lozano, Olga; Spano, Donatella
We used simulation modeling based on the minimum travel time algorithm (MTT) to analyze wildfire exposure of key ecological, social and economic features on Sardinia, Italy. Sardinia is the second largest island of the Mediterranean Basin, and in the last fifty years experienced large and dramatic wildfires, which caused losses and threatened urban interfaces, forests and natural areas, and agricultural productions. Historical fires and environmental data for the period 1995-2009 were used as input to estimate fine scale burn probability, conditional flame length, and potential fire size in the study area. With this purpose, we simulated 100,000 wildfire events within the study area, randomly drawing from the observed frequency distribution of burn periods and wind directions for each fire. Estimates of burn probability, excluding non-burnable fuels, ranged from 0 to 1.92x10-3, with a mean value of 6.48x10-5. Overall, the outputs provided a quantitative assessment of wildfire exposure at the landscape scale and captured landscape properties of wildfire exposure. We then examined how the exposure profiles varied among and within selected features and assets located on the island. Spatial variation in modeled outputs resulted in a strong effect of fuel models, coupled with slope and weather. In particular, the combined effect of Mediterranean maquis, woodland areas and complex topography on flame length was relevant, mainly in north-east Sardinia, whereas areas with herbaceous fuels and flat areas were in general characterized by lower fire intensity but higher burn probability. The simulation modeling proposed in this work provides a quantitative approach to inform wildfire risk management activities, and represents one of the first applications of burn probability modeling to capture fire risk and exposure profiles in the Mediterranean basin.
Power outages and flooding can cause electrical hazards. Never touch a downed power line or anything in contact with one. Created: 8/10/2006 by Emergency Communications System. Date Released: 10/22/2007.
... and Practices Treatments That Work Screening and Assessment Psychological First Aid and SPR Core Curriculum on Childhood Trauma Trauma- ... Measure Reviews All Measure Reviews Usage and Glossary Psychological First Aid and SPR About PFA About SPR NCTSN Resources ...
Guynn, J B
Response to a disaster situation depends upon the type of circumstances presented. In situations where the disaster is the type that affects the hospital as well as a wide surrounding area directly, the hospital and pharmacy itself may be called upon to continue functioning for some period of time without outside assistance. The ability to function for prolonged periods of time requires the staff to focus on the job at hand and the administrative staff to provide security, compassion, and flexibility. Plans for a disaster of the nature of a hurricane require that attention be paid to staffing, medication inventories, supplies, and services being rendered. Recognition of the singular position occupied by a hospital in the community and the expectations of the local population require that hospitals and the pharmacy department have the ability to respond appropriately.
Serious and widely reported scientific analyses and assessments have called attention to climate changes and to the additional risks the world now faces. Through science has not yet provided proof positive of a connection between the increased intensity of extreme weather events and climate change, there can be no valid reason for failing to hedge the risk with preventive action. The catastrophe that struck New Orleans had can been predicted since the 1990s. The 2050 Coast Plan for reducing the vulnerability of the Louisiana coast and preventing hurricane disasters had been approved by the local authorities but not the federal government. Partly because of its cost, it was never carried into effect [it
National Aeronautics and Space Administration — The GRIP Hurricane Imaging Radiometer (HIRAD) V1 dataset contains measurements of brightness temperature taken at 4, 5, 6 and 6.6 GHz, as well as MERRA 2 m wind...
Teague, William J; Jarosz, Eva; Keen, Timothy R; Wang, David W; Hulbert, Mark S
Observations that extensive bottom scour along the outer continental shelf under Hurricane Ivan resulted in the displacement of more than 100 million cubic meters of sediment from a 35x15 km region...
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — Hurricane Irene poster. Color composite GOES image shows Irene moving through the North Carolina Outer Banks on August 27, 2011. Poster size is 36"x27"
The characteristics of a growing sea during hurricanes are significantly different from those observed in ordinary storms since the source of energy generating waves is moving and the rate of change...
NSGIC Local Govt | GIS Inventory — A label feature class of Miami-Dade County Hurricane Evacuation Shelters (HEC) including Special Need Evacuation Centers (SNEC) and Medical Management Facilities...
Tsunamis and hurricanes have had a devastating impact on the population living near the coast during the year 2005. The calculation of the power and intensity of tsunamis and hurricanes are of great importance not only for engineers and meteorologists but also for governments and insurance companies. This book presents new research on the mathematical description of tsunamis and hurricanes. A combination of old and new approaches allows to derive a nonlinear partial differential equation of fifth order describing the steepening up and the propagation of tsunamis. The description includes dissipative terms and does not contain singularities or two valued functions. The equivalence principle of solutions of nonlinear large gas dynamics waves and of solutions of water wave equations will be used. An extension of the continuity equation by a source term due to evaporation rates of salt seawater will help to understand hurricanes. Detailed formula, tables and results of the calculations are given.
Elsner, James B.; Hodges, Robert E.; Jagger, Thomas H. [Florida State University, Tallahassee, FL (United States)
The authors demonstrate a spatial framework for studying hurricane climatology. The framework consists of a spatial tessellation of the hurricane basin using equal-area hexagons. The hexagons are efficient at covering hurricane tracks and provide a scaffolding to combine attribute data from tropical cyclones with spatial climate data. The framework's utility is demonstrated using examples from recent hurricane seasons. Seasons that have similar tracks are quantitatively assessed and grouped. Regional cyclone frequency and intensity variations are mapped. A geographically-weighted regression of cyclone intensity on sea-surface temperature emphasizes the importance of a warm ocean in the intensification of cyclones over regions where the heat content is greatest. The largest differences between model predictions and observations occur near the coast. The authors suggest the framework is ideally suited for comparing tropical cyclones generated from different numerical simulations. (orig.)
Stephen L. Sperry
Full Text Available Wildfire occurrence and intensity have increased over the last few decades and, at times, have been national news. Wildfire occurrence is somewhat predictable based on physical factors like meteorological conditions, fuel loads, and vegetation dynamics. Socioeconomic factors have been not been widely used in wildfire occurrence models. We used a geospatial (or geographical information system analysis approach to identify socioeconomic variables that contribute to wildfire occurrence. Key variables considered were population change, population density, poverty rate, educational level, geographic mobility, and road density (transportation network. Hot spot analysis was the primary research tool. Wildfire occurrence seemed to be positively related to low population densities, low levels of population change, high poverty rate, low educational attainment level, and low road density. Obviously, some of these variables are correlated and this is a complex problem. However, socioeconomic variables appeared to contribute to wildfire occurrence and should be considered in development of wildfire occurrence forecasting models.
Mrowiec, Agnieszka A.; Pauluis, Olivier; Zhang, Fuqing
Hurricanes, like many other atmospheric flows, are associated with turbulent motions over a wide range of scales. Here the authors adapt a new technique based on the isentropic analysis of convective motions to study the thermodynamic structure of the overturning circulation in hurricane simulations. This approach separates the vertical mass transport in terms of the equivalent potential temperature of air parcels. In doing so, one separates the rising air parcels at high entropy from the subsiding air at low entropy. This technique filters out oscillatory motions associated with gravity waves and separates convective overturning from the secondary circulation. This approach is applied here to study the flow of an idealized hurricane simulation with the Weather Research and Forecasting (WRF) Model. The isentropic circulation for a hurricane exhibits similar characteristics to that of moist convection, with a maximum mass transport near the surface associated with a shallow convection and entrainment. There are also important differences. For instance, ascent in the eyewall can be readily identified in the isentropic analysis as an upward mass flux of air with unusually high equivalent potential temperature. The isentropic circulation is further compared here to the Eulerian secondary circulation of the simulated hurricane to show that the mass transport in the isentropic circulation is much larger than the one in secondary circulation. This difference can be directly attributed to the mass transport by convection in the outer rainband and confirms that, even for a strongly organized flow like a hurricane, most of the atmospheric overturning is tied to the smaller scales.
Shah, S.; Pearson, D. K.
Hurricane Harvey was an unprecedented storm event that not only included a challenge to decision-makers, but also the scientific community to provide clear and rapid dissemination of changing streamflow conditions and potential flooding concerns. Of primary importance to the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) Texas Water Science Center was to focus on the availability of accessible data and scientific communication of rapidly changing water conditions across Texas with regards to heavy rainfall rates, rising rivers, streams, and lake elevations where USGS has monitoring stations. Infrastructure modernization leading to advanced GovTech practices and data visualization was key to the USGS role in providing data during Hurricane Harvey. In the last two years, USGS has released two web applications, "Texas Water Dashboard" and "Water-On-The-Go", which were heavily utilized by partners, local media, and municipal government officials. These tools provided the backbone for data distribution through both desktop and mobile applications as decision support during flood events. The combination of Texas Water Science Center web tools and the USGS National Water Information System handled more than 5-million data requests over the course of the storm. On the ground local information near Buffalo Bayou and Addicks/Barker Dams, as well as statewide support of USGS real-time scientific data, were delivered to the National Weather Service, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, FEMA, Harris County Flood Control District, the general public, and others. This presentation will provide an overview of GovTech solutions used during Hurricane Harvey, including the history of USGS tool development, discussion on the public response, and future applications for helping provide scientific communications to the public.
Kim, J. H.; Sutley, E. J.; Chowdhury, A. G.; Hamideh, S.
A significant portion of the U.S. building inventory exists in hurricane- and flood-prone regions. The accompanying storm surge and rising water levels often result in the inundation of residential homes, particularly those occupied by low income households and forcing displacement. In order to mitigate potential damages, a popular design technique is to elevate the structure using piers or piles to above the base flood elevation. This is observed for single-family and multi-family homes, including manufactured homes and post-disaster temporary housing, albeit at lower elevations. Although this design alleviates potential flood damage, it affects the wind-structure interaction by subjecting the structure to higher wind speeds due to its increased height and also having a path for the wind to pass underneath the structure potentially creating new vulnerabilities to wind loading. The current ASCE 7 Standard (2016) does not include a methodology for addressing the modified aerodynamics and estimating wind loads for elevated structures, and thus the potential vulnerability during high wind events is unaccounted for in design. Using experimentally measured wind pressures on elevated and non-elevated residential building models, tax data, and census data, a coupled vulnerability assessment is performed at the community-level. Galveston, Texas is selected as the case study community. Using the coupled assessment model, a hindcast of 2008 Hurricane Ike is used for predicting physical damage and household dislocation. The predicted results are compared with the actual outcomes of the 2008 hurricane disaster. Recommendations are made (1) for code adoption based on the experimentally measured wind loads, and (2) for mitigation actions and policies that would could decrease population dislocation and promote recovery.
Fang, N.; Bedient, P.
Houston has a long history of flooding problems as a serious nature. For instance, Houstonians suffered from severe flood inundation during Tropical Storm Allison in 2001 and Hurricane Ike in 2008. Radar-based flood warning systems as non-structural tools to provide accurate and timely warnings to the public and private entities are greatly needed for urban areas prone to flash floods. Fortunately, the advent of GIS, radar-based rainfall estimation using NEXRAD, and real-time delivery systems on the internet have allowed flood alert systems to provide important advanced warning of impending flood conditions. Thus, emergency personnel can take proper steps to mitigate against catastrophic losses. The Rice and Texas Medical Center (TMC) Flood Alert System (FAS2) has been delivering warning information with 2 to 3 hours of lead time to facility personnel in a readily understood format for more than 40 events since 1997. The system performed well during these major rainfall events with R square value of 93%. The current system has been improved by incorporating a new hydraulic prediction tool - FloodPlain Map Library (FPML). The FPML module aims to provide visualized information such as floodplain maps and water surface elevations instead of just showing hydrographs in real time based on NEXRAD radar rainfall data. During Hurricane Ike (September, 2008), FAS2 successfully provided precise and timely flood warning information to TMC with the peak flow difference of 3.6% and the volume difference of 5.6%; timing was excellent for this double-peaked event. With the funding from the Texas Department of Transportation, a similar flood warning system has been developed at a critical transportation pass along Highway 288 in Houston, Texas. In order to enable emergency personnel to begin flood preparation with as much lead time as possible, FAS2 is being used as a prototype to develop warning system for other flood-prone areas such as City of Sugar Land.
Devisscher, Tahia; Malhi, Yadvinder; Rojas Landívar, Víctor Diego; Oliveras Menor, Imma
Wildfires in tropical forests are likely to become a more dominant disturbance due to future increasing feedbacks between rapid frontier expansion and more frequent droughts. This study evaluates the effects of fire recurrence on seasonally dry tropical forests of the Chiquitania region, located
Lin, N.; Shullman, E.; Xian, S.; Feng, K.
Hurricanes have induced devastating storm surge flooding worldwide. The impacts of these storms may worsen in the coming decades because of rapid coastal development coupled with sea-level rise and possibly increasing storm activity due to climate change. Major advances in coastal flood risk management are urgently needed. We present an integrated dynamic risk analysis for flooding task (iDraft) framework to assess and manage coastal flood risk at the city or regional scale, considering integrated dynamic effects of storm climatology change, sea-level rise, and coastal development. We apply the framework to New York City. First, we combine climate-model projected storm surge climatology and sea-level rise with engineering- and social/economic-model projected coastal exposure and vulnerability to estimate the flood damage risk for the city over the 21st century. We derive temporally-varying risk measures such as the annual expected damage as well as temporally-integrated measures such as the present value of future losses. We also examine the individual and joint contributions to the changing risk of the three dynamic factors (i.e., sea-level rise, storm change, and coastal development). Then, we perform probabilistic cost-benefit analysis for various coastal flood risk mitigation strategies for the city. Specifically, we evaluate previously proposed mitigation measures, including elevating houses on the floodplain and constructing flood barriers at the coast, by comparing their estimated cost and probability distribution of the benefit (i.e., present value of avoided future losses). We also propose new design strategies, including optimal design (e.g., optimal house elevation) and adaptive design (e.g., flood protection levels that are designed to be modified over time in a dynamic and uncertain environment).
Dunham, J.B.; Rosenberger, A.E.; Luce, C.H.; Rieman, B.E.
Wildfire can influence a variety of stream ecosystem properties. We studied stream temperatures in relation to wildfire in small streams in the Boise River Basin, located in central Idaho, USA. To examine the spatio-temporal aspects of temperature in relation to wildfire, we employed three approaches: a pre-post fire comparison of temperatures between two sites (one from a burned stream and one unburned) over 13 years, a short-term (3 year) pre-post fire comparison of a burned and unburned stream with spatially extensive data, and a short-term (1 year) comparative study of spatial variability in temperatures using a "space for time" substitutive design across 90 sites in nine streams (retrospective comparative study). The latter design included streams with a history of stand-replacing wildfire and streams with severe post-fire reorganization of channels due to debris flows and flooding. Results from these three studies indicated that summer maximum water temperatures can remain significantly elevated for at least a decade following wildfire, particularly in streams with severe channel reorganization. In the retrospective comparative study we investigated occurrence of native rainbow trout (Oncorhynchus mykiss) and tailed frog larvae (Ascaphus montanus) in relation to maximum stream temperatures during summer. Both occurred in nearly every site sampled, but tailed frog larvae were found in much warmer water than previously reported in the field (26.6??C maximum summer temperature). Our results show that physical stream habitats can remain altered (for example, increased temperature) for many years following wildfire, but that native aquatic vertebrates can be resilient. In a management context, this suggests wildfire may be less of a threat to native species than human influences that alter the capacity of stream-living vertebrates to persist in the face of natural disturbance. ?? 2007 Springer Science+Business Media, LLC.
Hageman, Philip L.; Plumlee, Geoffrey S.; Martin, Deborah A.; Hoefen, Todd M.; Adams, Monique; Lamothe, Paul J.; Todorov, Todor I.; Anthony, Michael W.
This report releases leachate geochemical data for ash samples produced by the Angora wildfire that burned from June 24 to July 2, 2007, near Lake Tahoe in northern California. The leaching studies are part of a larger interdisciplinary study whose goal is to identify geochemical characteristics and properties of the ash that may adversely affect human health, water quality, air quality, animal habitat, endangered species, debris flows, and flooding hazards. The leaching study helps characterize and understand the interactions that occur when the ash comes in contact with rain or snowmelt, and helps identify the constituents that may be mobilized as run-off from these materials. Similar leaching studies were conducted on ash and burned soils from the October 2007 southern California wildfires (Hageman and others, 2008; Plumlee and others, 2007).
Ceres, R. L., Jr.; Forest, C. E.; Keller, K.
Widespread flooding from Hurricane Harvey greatly exceeded the Federal Emergency Management Agency's 100-year flood levels. In the US, this flood level is often used as an important line of demarcation where areas above this level are considered safe, while areas below the line are at risk and require additional flood risk mitigation. In the wake of Harvey's damage, the US media has highlighted at least two important questions. First, has the 100-year flood level changed? Second, is the 100-year flood level a good metric for determining flood risk? To address the first question, we use an Observation System Simulation Experiment of storm surge flood levels and find that gradual changes to the 100-year storm surge level may not be reliably detected over the long lifespans expected of major flood risk mitigation strategies. Additionally, we find that common extreme value analysis models lead to biased results and additional uncertainty when incorrect assumptions are used for the underlying statistical model. These incorrect assumptions can lead to examples of negative learning. Addressing the second question, these findings further challenge the validity of using simple return levels such as the 100-year flood as a decision tool for assessing flood risk. These results indicate risk management strategies must account for such uncertainties to build resilient and robust planning tools that stakeholders desperately need.
National Clearinghouse for Educational Facilities, 2011
According to the Federal Emergency Management Agency, flooding is the nation's most common natural disaster. Some floods develop slowly during an extended period of rain or in a warming trend following a heavy snow. Flash floods can occur quickly, without any visible sign of rain. Catastrophic floods are associated with burst dams and levees,…
Montgomery, Marilyn C.; Chakraborty, Jayajit
Recent environmental justice (EJ) research has emphasized the need to analyze social inequities in the distribution of natural hazards such as hurricanes and floods, and examine intra-ethnic diversity in patterns of EJ. This study contributes to the emerging EJ scholarship on exposure to flooding and ethnic heterogeneity by analyzing the racial/ethnic and socioeconomic characteristics of the population residing within coastal and inland flood risk zones in the Miami Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA), Florida—one of the most ethnically diverse MSAs in the U.S. and one of the most hurricane-prone areas in the world. We examine coastal and inland flood zones separately because of differences in amenities such as water views and beach access. Instead of treating the Hispanic population as a homogenous group, we disaggregate the Hispanic category into relevant country-of-origin subgroups. Inequities in flood risk exposure are statistically analyzed using socio-demographic variables derived from the 2010 U.S. Census and 2007-2011 American Community Survey estimates, and 100-year flood risk zones from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). Social vulnerability is represented with two neighborhood deprivation indices called economic insecurity and instability. We also analyze the presence of seasonal/vacation homes and proximity to public beach access sites as water-related amenity variables. Logistic regression modeling is utilized to estimate the odds of neighborhood-level exposure to coastal and inland 100-year flood risks. Results indicate that neighborhoods with greater percentages of non-Hispanic Blacks, Hispanics, and Hispanic subgroups of Colombians and Puerto Ricans are exposed to inland flood risks in areas without water-related amenities, while Mexicans are inequitably exposed to coastal flood risks. Our findings demonstrate the importance of treating coastal and inland flood risks separately while controlling for water-related amenities, and
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — This 36"x24" National Hurricane Center poster depicts the complete tracks of all major hurricanes in the north Atlantic and eastern north Pacific basins since as...
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — The Continental U.S. Hurricane Strikes Poster is our most popular poster which is updated annually. The poster includes all hurricanes that affected the U.S. since...
Garcia-Herrera, R. [Depto. Fisica de la Tierra II, Facultad de Ciencias Fisicas, Universidad Complutense de Madrid, Ciudad Universitaria, 28040 Madrid (Spain); Gimeno, L. [Universidad de Vigo, Ourense (Spain); Ribera, P.; Gonzalez, E.; Fernandez, G. [Universidad Pablo de Olavide, Sevilla (Spain); Hernandez, E. [Universidad Complutense de Madrid, Madrid (Spain)
This paper analyses five hurricanes that occurred in the period 1600 to 1800. These examples were identified during a systematic search in the General Archive of the Indies (AGI) in Seville. The research combined the expertise of climatologists and historians in order to optimise the search and analysis strategies. Results demonstrate the potential of this archive for the assessment of hurricanes in this period and show some of the difficulties involved in the collection of evidence of hurricane activity. The documents provide detailed descriptions of a hurricane's impacts and allow us to identify previously unreported hurricanes, obtain more precise dates for hurricanes previously identified, better define the area affected by a given hurricane and, finally, better assess a hurricane's intensity.
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — The 2005 Significant U.S. Hurricane Strikes poster is one of two special edition posters for the Atlantic Hurricanes. This beautiful poster contains two sets of...
Tejeda, A.; Ochoa, C.
During October of 2005, when hurricane Stan caused destruction to the center and south of the state of Veracruz, a book was elaborated. The book's called Floods of 2005 in the state of Veracruz and contains twenty chapters. The first three chapters conform a panoramic of the book and two historical and archaeological contributions. One second part takes care of the natural phenomena of floods: meteorological, hydrological aspects, and biodiversity. Economic and social aspects are the largest contents of the volume, which concludes with reflections towards the future: the possible consequences of global climatic change, the chemical component that's not considered in the evaluation and prevention of risks by hidrometeorogical phenomena, and the duty of political prevention of disasters. The frame reference for the book is through a discussion of all kind of contributions. Which means that this book presentation is for the geophysicists community of Mexico. Keywords: Floods, state of Veracruz, risks and disasters.
Boose, Emery Robert; Serrano, Mayra I.; Foster, David Russell
Puerto Rico is subject to frequent and severe impacts from hurricanes, whose long-term ecological role must be assessed on a scale of centuries. In this study we applied a method for reconstructing hurricane disturbance regimes developed in an earlier study of hurricanes in New England. Patterns of actual wind damage from historical records were analyzed for 85 hurricanes since European settlement in 1508. A simple meteorological model (HURRECON) was used to reconstruct the impacts of 43 hurr...
Dillon, Robin L; Tinsley, Catherine H; Cronin, Matthew
Prior research shows that when people perceive the risk of some hazardous event to be low, they are unlikely to engage in mitigation activities for the potential hazard. We believe one factor that can lower inappropriately (from a normative perspective) people's perception of the risk of a hazard is information about prior near-miss events. A near-miss occurs when an event (such as a hurricane), which had some nontrivial probability of ending in disaster (loss of life, property damage), does not because good fortune intervenes. People appear to mistake such good fortune as an indicator of resiliency. In our first study, people with near-miss information were less likely to purchase flood insurance, and this was shown for both participants from the general population and individuals with specific interests in risk and natural disasters. In our second study, we consider a different mitigation decision, that is, to evacuate from a hurricane, and vary the level of statistical probability of hurricane damage. We still found a strong effect for near-miss information. Our research thus shows how people who have experienced a similar situation but escape damage because of chance will make decisions consistent with a perception that the situation is less risky than those without the past experience. We end by discussing the implications for risk communication. © 2010 Society for Risk Analysis.
Varlas, George; Papadopoulos, Anastasios; Katsafados, Petros
Hurricane Sandy affected the Caribbean Islands and the Northeastern United States in October 2012 and caused 233 fatalities, severe rainfalls, floods, electricity blackouts, and 75 billion U.S. dollars in damages. In this study, the synoptic and dynamical characteristics that led to the formation of the hurricane are investigated. The system was driven by the interaction between the polar jet displacement and the subtropical jet stream. In particular, Sandy was initially formed as a tropical depression system over the Caribbean Sea and the unusually warm sea drove its intensification. The interaction between a rapidly approaching trough from the northwest and the stagnant ridge over the Atlantic Ocean drove Sandy to the northeast coast of United States. To better understand the dynamical characteristics and the mechanisms that triggered Sandy, a non-hydrostatic mesoscale model has been used. Model results indicate that the surface heat fluxes and the moisture advection enhanced the convective available potential energy, increased the low-level convective instability, and finally deepened the hurricane. Moreover, the upper air conditions triggered the low-level frontogenesis and increased the asymmetry of the system which finally affected its trajectory.
Barbier, Edward B; Georgiou, Ioannis Y; Enchelmeyer, Brian; Reed, Denise J
The Indian Ocean tsunami in 2004 and Hurricanes Katrina and Rita in 2005 have spurred global interest in the role of coastal wetlands and vegetation in reducing storm surge and flood damages. Evidence that coastal wetlands reduce storm surge and attenuate waves is often cited in support of restoring Gulf Coast wetlands to protect coastal communities and property from hurricane damage. Yet interdisciplinary studies combining hydrodynamic and economic analysis to explore this relationship for temperate marshes in the Gulf are lacking. By combining hydrodynamic analysis of simulated hurricane storm surges and economic valuation of expected property damages, we show that the presence of coastal marshes and their vegetation has a demonstrable effect on reducing storm surge levels, thus generating significant values in terms of protecting property in southeast Louisiana. Simulations for four storms along a sea to land transect show that surge levels decline with wetland continuity and vegetation roughness. Regressions confirm that wetland continuity and vegetation along the transect are effective in reducing storm surge levels. A 0.1 increase in wetland continuity per meter reduces property damages for the average affected area analyzed in southeast Louisiana, which includes New Orleans, by $99-$133, and a 0.001 increase in vegetation roughness decreases damages by $24-$43. These reduced damages are equivalent to saving 3 to 5 and 1 to 2 properties per storm for the average area, respectively.
Spruce, Joseph; McKellip, Rodney
Hurricane Katrina hit southeastern Louisiana and the Mississippi Gulf Coast as a Category 3 hurricane with storm surges as high as 9 m. Katrina devastated several coastal towns by destroying or severely damaging hundreds of homes. Several Federal agencies are assessing storm impacts and assisting recovery using high-spatial-resolution remotely sensed data from satellite and airborne platforms. High-quality IKONOS satellite imagery was collected on September 2, 2005, over southwestern Mississippi. Pan-sharpened IKONOS multispectral data and ERDAS IMAGINE software were used to classify post-storm land cover for coastal Hancock and Harrison Counties. This classification included a storm debris category of interest to FEMA for disaster mitigation. The classification resulted from combining traditional unsupervised and supervised classification techniques. Higher spatial resolution aerial and handheld photography were used as reference data. Results suggest that traditional classification techniques and IKONOS data can map wood-dominated storm debris in open areas if relevant training areas are used to develop the unsupervised classification signatures. IKONOS data also enabled other hurricane damage assessment, such as flood-deposited mud on lawns and vegetation foliage loss from the storm. IKONOS data has also aided regional Katrina vegetation damage surveys from multidate Land Remote Sensing Satellite and Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer data.
van Oldenborgh, Geert Jan; van der Wiel, Karin; Sebastian, Antonia; Singh, Roop; Arrighi, Julie; Otto, Friederike; Haustein, Karsten; Li, Sihan; Vecchi, Gabriel; Cullen, Heidi
During August 25-30, 2017, Hurricane Harvey stalled over Texas and caused extreme precipitation, particularly over Houston and the surrounding area on August 26-28. This resulted in extensive flooding with over 80 fatalities and large economic costs. It was an extremely rare event: the return period of the highest observed three-day precipitation amount, 1043.4 mm 3dy-1 at Baytown, is more than 9000 years (97.5% one-sided confidence interval) and return periods exceeded 1000 yr (750 mm 3dy-1) over a large area in the current climate. Observations since 1880 over the region show a clear positive trend in the intensity of extreme precipitation of between 12% and 22%, roughly two times the increase of the moisture holding capacity of the atmosphere expected for 1 °C warming according to the Clausius-Clapeyron (CC) relation. This would indicate that the moisture flux was increased by both the moisture content and stronger winds or updrafts driven by the heat of condensation of the moisture. We also analysed extreme rainfall in the Houston area in three ensembles of 25 km resolution models. The first also shows 2 × CC scaling, the second 1 × CC scaling and the third did not have a realistic representation of extreme rainfall on the Gulf Coast. Extrapolating these results to the 2017 event, we conclude that global warming made the precipitation about 15% (8%-19%) more intense, or equivalently made such an event three (1.5-5) times more likely. This analysis makes clear that extreme rainfall events along the Gulf Coast are on the rise. And while fortifying Houston to fully withstand the impact of an event as extreme as Hurricane Harvey may not be economically feasible, it is critical that information regarding the increasing risk of extreme rainfall events in general should be part of the discussion about future improvements to Houston’s flood protection system.
Luettich, R.; Westerink, J. J.
Coastal counties are home to nearly 60% of the U.S. population and industry that accounts for over 16 million jobs and 10% of the U.S. annual gross domestic product. However, these areas are susceptible to some of the most destructive forces in nature, including tsunamis, floods, and severe storm-related hazards. Since 1900, tropical cyclones making landfall on the US Gulf of Mexico Coast have caused more than 9,000 deaths; nearly 2,000 deaths have occurred during the past half century. Tropical cyclone-related adjusted, annualized losses in the US have risen from 1.3 billion from 1949-1989, to 10.1 billion from 1990-1995, and $35.8 billion per year for the period 2001-2005. The risk associated with living and doing business in the coastal areas that are most susceptible to tropical cyclones is exacerbated by rising sea level and changes in the characteristics of severe storms associated with global climate change. In the five years since hurricane Katrina devastated the northern Gulf of Mexico Coast, considerable progress has been made in the development and utilization of high resolution coupled storm surge and wave models. Recent progress will be presented with the ADCIRC + SWAN storm surge and wave models. These tightly coupled models use a common unstructured grid in the horizontal that is capable of covering large areas while also providing high resolution (i.e., base resolution down to 20m plus smaller subgrid scale features such as sea walls and levees) in areas that are subject to surge and inundation. Hydrodynamic friction and overland winds are adjusted to account for local land cover. The models scale extremely well on modern high performance computers allowing rapid turnaround on large numbers of compute cores. The models have been adopted for FEMA National Flood Insurance Program studies, hurricane protection system design and risk analysis, and quasi-operational forecast systems for several regions of the country. They are also being evaluated as
de Vries, D.H.
After major flooding associated with Hurricane Floyd (1999) in North Carolina, mitigation managers seized upon the “window of opportunity” to woo residents to accept residential buyout offers despite sizable community resistance. I present a theoretical explanation of how post-crisis periods turn
.... This series was developed to describe and make available to the public such information as methods that... maximum hurricane windspeeds for hurricanes that originate in the Atlantic and make landfall along the... connected and provides an aerodynamic sail area on which the wind can act. An automobile hurricane missile...
Bass, Benjamin; Bedient, Philip
This study discusses the development and performance of a rapid prediction system capable of representing the joint rainfall-runoff and storm surge flood response of tropical cyclones (TCs) for probabilistic risk analysis. Due to the computational demand required for accurately representing storm surge with the high-fidelity ADvanced CIRCulation (ADCIRC) hydrodynamic model and its coupling with additional numerical models to represent rainfall-runoff, a surrogate or statistical model was trained to represent the relationship between hurricane wind- and pressure-field characteristics and their peak joint flood response typically determined from physics based numerical models. This builds upon past studies that have only evaluated surrogate models for predicting peak surge, and provides the first system capable of probabilistically representing joint flood levels from TCs. The utility of this joint flood prediction system is then demonstrated by improving upon probabilistic TC flood risk products, which currently account for storm surge but do not take into account TC associated rainfall-runoff. Results demonstrate the source apportionment of rainfall-runoff versus storm surge and highlight that slight increases in flood risk levels may occur due to the interaction between rainfall-runoff and storm surge as compared to the Federal Emergency Management Association's (FEMAs) current practices.
Conner, K.; Lindner, J.; Moore, M.
During large scale natural disasters, like hurricane Harvey, time-critical decisions are made on a constant basis. From evacuation orders, allocation of emergency resources, or allowing people to return home, decisions are only as good as the information upon which they are based. Better real-time data lead to better decisions which ultimately leads to improved disaster response and recovery. In 2015 Harris County Flood Control District (HCFCD) in Houston, TX began upgrading their automatic flood warning system (FWS) that dates back to the 1980s. The HCFCD network consists of 154 remote stations that report precipitation intensities and stream levels in near real time. Since the upgrades were completed in 2016 the Houston area has experienced multiple 100+ rain events, the most recent being Hurricane Harvey. The FWS generated accurate, reliable, real-time data throughout the entirety of the record breaking, four-day event. This information was disseminated to state, local and federal agencies, news outlets and the public via web sites and social media. Without this quality of data, disaster management decisions could not have been made effectively, ultimately leading to greater destruction of property and loss of life.
Palaseanu-Lovejoy, M.; Kranenburg, C.; Brock, J. C.
The objective of this study is to develop a fractional water map at 30-m resolution scale using QuickBird and/or IKONOS high-resolution imagery as dependent variable to investigate the impact of hurricane Rita in the Chenier Plain, Louisiana. Eleven different indices were tested to obtain a high-resolution land / water classification on QuickBird (acquired on 05/23/2003) and IKONOS (acquired on 03/25/2006) images. The percent area covered by water in the high resolution images varied from 22 to 26% depending on the index used , with the simple ratio index (red band / NIR band) accounting for the lowest percent and the blue ratio index (blue band / sum(all bands)) for the highest percent. Using the ERDAS NLCD (National Land Cover Data) Mapping tool module, 100, 000 stratified random sample points with minimum 1000 points per stratum were selected from the high resolution dependent variable as training information for the independent variable layers. The rules for the regression tree were created using the data mining software Rulequest Cubist v. 2.05. This information was used to generate a fractional water map for the entire Landsat scene. The increase in water areas of about 10 - 15% between 2003 to 2006, as well as temporary changes in the water - land configurations are attributed to remnant flooding and removal of aquatic vegetation caused by hurricane Rita, and water level variations caused by tidal and / or meteorological variations between the acquisition dates of the satellite images. This analysis can assist in monitoring post-hurricane wetland recovery and assess trends in land loss due to extreme storm events, although estimation of permanent land loss cannot be made until wetland areas have the opportunity to recover from hurricane impacts.
Fox-Gliessman, D.; Kerski, J.J.
Various technologies that can assist students in exploring the human and environmental impacts of wildfire and in communicating their findings are discussed. Wildfires occur in many parts of the world, and provide an excellent opportunity for students to study local and global interdisciplinary issues using technology. Prior to the beginning of the field study, students take instructions in both their math and science classes about the distinction and appropriate uses of quantitative and qualitative data. Use of computer programs such as Excel spreadsheets which can contain data, and interaction of research and technology group with students, can help them collect best of the information and in making an accurate report.
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — This Historical Hurricane Tracks web site provides visualizations of storm tracks derived from the 6-hourly (0000, 0600, 1200, 1800 UTC) center locations and...
Harden, Tessa M.; O'Connor, James E.; Driscoll, Daniel G.
A stratigraphic record of 35 large paleofloods and four large historical floods during the last 2000 years for four basins in the Black Hills of South Dakota reveals three long-term flooding episodes, identified using probability distributions, at A.D.: 120–395, 900–1290, and 1410 to present. During the Medieval Climate Anomaly (~ A.D. 900–1300) the four basins collectively experienced 13 large floods compared to nine large floods in the previous 800 years, including the largest floods of the last 2000 years for two of the four basins. This high concentration of extreme floods is likely caused by one or more of the following: 1) instability of air masses caused by stronger than normal westerlies; 2) larger or more frequent hurricanes in the Gulf of Mexico and Atlantic Ocean; and/or 3) reduced land covering vegetation or increased forest fires caused by persistent regional drought.
Sumi, S. J.; Ferreira, C.
Extreme flood events are the costliest natural hazards impacting the US and frequently cause extensive damages to infrastructure, disruption to economy and loss of lives. In 2016, Hurricane Matthew brought severe damage to South Carolina and demonstrated the importance of accurate flood hazard predictions that requires the integration of riverine and coastal model forecasts for total water prediction in coastal and tidal areas. The National Weather Service (NWS) and the National Ocean Service (NOS) provide flood forecasts for almost the entire US, still there are service-gap areas in tidal regions where no official flood forecast is available. The National capital region is vulnerable to multi-flood hazards including high flows from annual inland precipitation events and surge driven coastal inundation along the tidal Potomac River. Predicting flood levels on such tidal areas in river-estuarine zone is extremely challenging. The main objective of this study is to develop the next generation of flood forecast systems capable of providing accurate and timely information to support emergency management and response in areas impacted by multi-flood hazards. This forecast system is capable of simulating flood levels in the Potomac and Anacostia River incorporating the effects of riverine flooding from the upstream basins, urban storm water and tidal oscillations from the Chesapeake Bay. Flood forecast models developed so far have been using riverine data to simulate water levels for Potomac River. Therefore, the idea is to use forecasted storm surge data from a coastal model as boundary condition of this system. Final output of this validated model will capture the water behavior in river-estuary transition zone far better than the one with riverine data only. The challenge for this iFLOOD forecast system is to understand the complex dynamics of multi-flood hazards caused by storm surges, riverine flow, tidal oscillation and urban storm water. Automated system
Hosseini, S. R.; Scaioni, M.; Marani, M.
In this paper, the possible connection between the frequency of Atlantic hurricanes to the climate change, mainly the variation in the Atlantic Ocean surface temperature has been investigated. The correlation between the observed hurricane frequency for different categories of hurricane's intensity and Sea Surface Temperature (SST) has been examined over the Atlantic Tropical Cyclogenesis Regions (ACR). The results suggest that in general, the frequency of hurricanes have a high correlation with SST. In particular, the frequency of extreme hurricanes with Category 5 intensity has the highest correlation coefficient (R = 0.82). In overall, the analyses in this work demonstrates the influence of the climate change condition on the Atlantic hurricanes and suggest a strong correlation between the frequency of extreme hurricanes and SST in the ACR.
Sebastian, A.; Juan, A.; Gori, A.; Maulsby, F.; Bedient, P. B.
Between August 25 and 30, Hurricane Harvey dropped unprecedented rainfall over southeast Texas causing widespread flooding in the City of Houston. Water levels in the Addicks and Barker reservoirs, built in the 1940s to protect downtown Houston, exceeded previous records by approximately 2 meters. Concerns regarding structural integrity of the dams and damage to neighbourhoods in within the reservoir pool resulted in controlled releases into Buffalo Bayou, flooding an estimated 4,000 additional structures downstream of the dams. In 2016, during the Tax Day it became apparent that overflows from Cypress Creek in northern Harris County substantially contribute to water levels in Addicks. Prior to this event, little was known about the hydrodynamics of this overflow area or about the additional stress placed on Addicks and Barker reservoirs due to the volume of overflow. However, this information is critical for determining flood risk in Addicks Watershed, and ultimately Buffalo Bayou. In this study, we utilize the recently developed HEC-RAS 2D model the interbasin transfer that occurs between Cypress Creek Watershed and Addicks Reservoir to quantify the volume and rate at which water from Cypress enters the reservoir during extreme events. Ultimately, the results of this study will help inform the official hydrologic models used by HCFCD to determine reservoir operation during future storm events and better inform residents living in or above the reservoir pool about their potential flood risk.
Rahmat Aris Pratomo
Full Text Available Flash-flood is considered as one of the most common natural disasters in Grenada, a tropical small state island in Caribbean Island. Grenada has several areas which are susceptible to flooding. One of them is Gouyave town which is located in the north-west of Grenada. Its land-use types are highly dominated by green areas, especially in the upper-part of the region. The built-up areas can only be found in the lower-part of Gouyave watershed, near the coastal area. However, there were many land conversions from natural land-use types into built-up areas in the upper-part region. They affected the decrease of water infiltration and the increase of potential run-off, making these areas susceptible to flash-flood. In addition, it is also influenced by the phenomenon of climate change. Changes in extreme temperature increase higher potential of hurricanes or wind-storm, directly related to the potential escalation of flash-flood. To develop effective mitigation strategies, understanding the behavior of flash-flood is required. The purpose of this paper was to observe the behavior of flash-flood in Gouyave watershed in various return periods using OpenLISEM software. It was used to develop and analyse the flash-flood characteristics. The result showed that the climatic condition (rainfall intensity and land-use are influential to the flash-flood event. Flash-flood occurs in 35 and 100 years return period. Flash-flood inundates Gouyave’s area in long duration, with below 1 m flood depth. The flood propagation time is slow. This condition is also influenced by the narrower and longer of Gouyave basin shape. To develop flash-flood reduction strategies, the overall understanding of flash-flood behavior is important. If the mitigation strategy is adapted to their behavior, the implementation will be more optimum.
Barras, John A.
Introduction Hurricane Katrina made landfall on the eastern coastline of Louisiana on August 29, 2005; Hurricane Rita made landfall on the western coastline of Louisiana on September 24, 2005. Comparison of Landsat Thematic Mapper (TM) satellite imagery acquired before and after the landfalls of Katrina and Rita and classified to identify land and water demonstrated that water area increased by 217 mi2 (562 km2) in coastal Louisiana as a result of the storms. Approximately 82 mi2 (212 km2) of new water areas were in areas primarily impacted by Hurricane Katrina (Mississippi River Delta basin, Breton Sound basin, Pontchartrain basin, and Pearl River basin), whereas 99 mi2 (256 km2) were in areas primarily impacted by Hurricane Rita (Calcasieu/Sabine basin, Mermentau basin, Teche/Vermilion basin, Atchafalaya basin, and Terrebonne basin). Barataria basin contained new water areas caused by both hurricanes, resulting in some 18 mi2 (46.6 km2) of new water areas. The fresh marsh and intermediate marsh communities' land areas decreased by 122 mi2 (316 km2) and 90 mi2 (233.1 km2), respectively, and the brackish marsh and saline marsh communities' land areas decreased by 33 mi2 (85.5 km2) and 28 mi2 (72.5 km2), respectively. These new water areas represent land losses caused by direct removal of wetlands. They also indicate transitory changes in water area caused by remnant flooding, removal of aquatic vegetation, scouring of marsh vegetation, and water-level variation attributed to normal tidal and meteorological variation between satellite images. Permanent losses cannot be estimated until several growing seasons have passed and the transitory impacts of the hurricanes are minimized. The purpose of this study was to provide preliminary information on water area changes in coastal Louisiana acquired shortly after the landfalls of both hurricanes (detectable with Landsat TM imagery) and to serve as a regional baseline for monitoring posthurricane wetland recovery. The land
Carroll, M.; Paveglio, T.; Kallman, D.
fire also contributed to perceptions about the level of wildfire impact. Many respondents felt that impacts from the Dahl Fire were the result of historic development patterns that allowed for mid-sized, rural subdivisions in heavily forested draws and along rough roads. Residents in these areas often moved to the Bull Mountains for privacy and to exercise significant property rights. Other residents felt the fire was not attacked quickly enough. Resident response to the impacts was almost universally perceived as well organized and effective. It was predicated on the collaborative capacity of local groups, community ties and experience with historic floods the year prior to the fire. Unexpected longer-term impacts such as high levels of erosion and flash-flooding have kept the fire in the minds of residents and contributed to their perceptions of impact. Respondents (including those with homes that burned) indicated that a significant portion of those whose property was damaged did not intend to return or rebuild. This is somewhat unique in response to wildfires and should be explored in future fires perceived by locals as extreme in order to test for emerging trends.
Earth Data Analysis Center, University of New Mexico — The National Flood Hazard Layer (NFHL) data incorporates all Digital Flood Insurance Rate Map(DFIRM) databases published by FEMA, and any Letters Of Map Revision...
Earth Data Analysis Center, University of New Mexico — The National Flood Hazard Layer (NFHL) data incorporates all Digital Flood Insurance Rate Map(DFIRM) databases published by FEMA, and any Letters Of Map Revision...
Earth Data Analysis Center, University of New Mexico — The National Flood Hazard Layer (NFHL) data incorporates all Digital Flood Insurance Rate Map(DFIRM) databases published by FEMA, and any Letters Of Map Revision...
What you should do to protect yourself and your family from a hurricane. As you evacuate, remember to take your prescription medicines with you. Created: 8/10/2006 by Emergency Communications System. Date Released: 7/17/2008.
Nguyen, B.M.; Van Gelder, P.H.A.J.M.
This paper presents a new approach of applying numerical methods to model storm processes. A storm empirical track technique is utilized to simulate the full tracks of hurricanes, starting with their initial points over the sea and ending with their landfall locations or final dissipations. The
Holthuijsen, L.H.; Powell, M.D.; Pietrzak, J.D.
Waves breaking at the ocean surface are important to the dynamical, chemical and biological processes at the air-sea interface. The traditional view is that the white capping and aero-dynamical surface roughness increase with wind speed up to a limiting value. This view is fundamental to hurricane
New York Harbor was directly in the path of the most damaging part of Hurricane Sandy causing significant impact on many of the : facilities of the Port of New York and New Jersey. The U.S. Coast Guard closed the entire Port to all traffic before the...
J. M. Saveland; D. D. Wade
Hurricane Hugo passed over the Francis Marion National Forest on September 22, 1989, removing almost 75 percent of the overstory. The radically altered fuel bed presented new and formidable challenges to fire managers. Tractor-plows, the mainstay of fire suppression, were rendered ineffective. The specter of wind-driven escaped burns with no effective means of ground...
Pearson, Earl F.
The destructive potential of one of nature's most destructive forces, the hurricane, is compared to one of human's most destructive devices, an atomic bomb. Both can create near absolute devastation at "ground zero". However, how do they really compare in terms of destructive energy? This discussion compares the energy, the…
Weather Service NWS logo - Click to go to the NWS home page Climate Prediction Center Home Site Map News ; Seasonal Climate Summary Archive The 2018 Atlantic hurricane season outlook is an official product of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Climate Prediction Center (CPC). The outlook is
"Hurricane Sandy demonstrated the strengths and limits of the transportation infrastructure in New York City and the surrounding region. As a result of the timely and thorough preparations by New York City and the MTA, along with the actions of city ...
If a hurricane warning is issued for your area, or authorities tell you to evacuate, take only essential items. If you have time, turn off gas, electricity, and water and disconnect appliances. Created: 8/10/2006 by Emergency Communications System. Date Released: 10/10/2007.
Jeffrey P. Prestemon; Thomas P. Holmes
We present a conceptual model of the economic impacts of hurricanes on timber producers and consumers, offer a framework indicating how welfare impacts can be estimated using econometric estimates of timber price dynamics, and illustrate the advantages of using a welfare theoretic model, which includes (1) welfare estimates that are consistent with neo-classical...
Larsen, Søren Ejling; Ejsing Jørgensen, Hans; Kelly, Mark C.
The report summarizes characteristics of the winds associated with Tropical Cyclones (Hurricanes, Typhoons). It has been conducted by the authors across several years, from 2012-2015, to identify the processes and aspects that one should consider when building at useful computer support system...
Kok, M.; Jonkman, S.N.; Lendering, K.T.
Historically the Netherlands have always had to deal with the threat of flooding, both from the rivers and the sea as well as from heavy rainfall. The country consists of a large amount of polders, which are low lying areas of land protected from flooding by embankments. These polders require an
van Verseveld, H.C.W.; Van Dongeren, A. R.; Plant, Nathaniel G.; Jäger, W.S.; den Heijer, C.
Hurricane flood impacts to residential buildings in coastal zones are caused by a number of hazards, such as inundation, overflow currents, erosion, and wave attack. However, traditional hurricane damage models typically make use of stage-damage functions, where the stage is related to flooding depth only. Moreover, these models are deterministic and do not consider the large amount of uncertainty associated with both the processes themselves and with the predictions. This uncertainty becomes increasingly important when multiple hazards (flooding, wave attack, erosion, etc.) are considered simultaneously. This paper focusses on establishing relationships between observed damage and multiple hazard indicators in order to make better probabilistic predictions. The concept consists of (1) determining Local Hazard Indicators (LHIs) from a hindcasted storm with use of a nearshore morphodynamic model, XBeach, and (2) coupling these LHIs and building characteristics to the observed damages. We chose a Bayesian Network approach in order to make this coupling and used the LHIs ‘Inundation depth’, ‘Flow velocity’, ‘Wave attack’, and ‘Scour depth’ to represent flooding, current, wave impacts, and erosion related hazards.The coupled hazard model was tested against four thousand damage observations from a case site at the Rockaway Peninsula, NY, that was impacted by Hurricane Sandy in late October, 2012. The model was able to accurately distinguish ‘Minor damage’ from all other outcomes 95% of the time and could distinguish areas that were affected by the storm, but not severely damaged, 68% of the time. For the most heavily damaged buildings (‘Major Damage’ and ‘Destroyed’), projections of the expected damage underestimated the observed damage. The model demonstrated that including multiple hazards doubled the prediction skill, with Log-Likelihood Ratio test (a measure of improved accuracy and reduction in uncertainty) scores between 0.02 and 0
Ashley, Nicholas A; Valsaraj, Kalliat T; Thibodeaux, Louis J
Sediment samples were collected from two homes which were flooded in the wake of Hurricane Katrina in August 2005. The samples were analyzed for trace metals and semi-volatile organic compounds using techniques based on established EPA methods. The data showed higher concentrations of some metals and semi-volatile organic pollutants than reported in previous outdoor sampling events of soils and sediments. The Lake Pontchartrain sediments became resuspended during the hurricane, and this material subsequently was found in the residential areas of New Orleans following levee breaches. The clay and silt particles appear to be selectively deposited inside homes, and sediment contaminant concentrations are usually greatest within this fraction. Re-entry advisories based on outdoor sample concentration results may have under-predicted the exposure levels to homeowners and first responders. All contaminants found in the sediment sampled in this study have their origin in the sediments of Lake Pontchartrain and other localized sources.
Murphy, S. F.; Martin, D. A.; McCleskey, R. B.; Writer, J. H.
Forests yield high-quality water supplies to communities throughout the world, in part because forest cover reduces flooding and the consequent transport of suspended and dissolved constituents to surface water. Disturbance by wildfire reduces or eliminates forest cover, leaving watersheds susceptible to increased surface runoff during storms and reduced ability to retain contaminants. We assessed water-quality response to hydrologic events for three years after a wildfire in the Fourmile Creek Watershed, near Boulder, Colorado, and found that hydrologic and geochemical responses downstream of a burned area were primarily driven by small, brief convective storms that had relatively high, but not unusual, rainfall intensity. Total suspended sediment, dissolved organic carbon, nitrate, and manganese concentrations were 10-156 times higher downstream of a burned area compared to upstream, and water quality was sufficiently impaired to pose water-treatment concerns. The response in both concentration and yield of water-quality constituents differed depending on source availability and dominant watershed processes controlling the constituent. For example, while all constituent concentrations were highest during storm events, annual sediment yields downstream of the burned area were controlled by storm events and subsequent mobilization, whereas dissolved organic carbon yields were more dependent on spring runoff from upstream areas. The watershed response was affected by a legacy of historical disturbance: the watershed had been recovering from extensive disturbance by mining, railroad and road development, logging, and fires in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, and we observed extensive erosion of mine waste in response to these summer storms. Therefore, both storm characteristics and historical disturbance in a burned watershed must be considered when evaluating the role of wildfire on water quality.
Ward, P.; Dettinger, M. D.; Kummu, M.; Jongman, B.; Sperna Weiland, F.; Winsemius, H.
In this contribution we demonstrate the influence of climate variability on flood risk. Globally, flooding is one of the worst natural hazards in terms of economic damages; Munich Re estimates global losses in the last decade to be in excess of $240 billion. As a result, scientifically sound estimates of flood risk at the largest scales are increasingly needed by industry (including multinational companies and the insurance industry) and policy communities. Several assessments of global scale flood risk under current and conditions have recently become available, and this year has seen the first studies assessing how flood risk may change in the future due to global change. However, the influence of climate variability on flood risk has as yet hardly been studied, despite the fact that: (a) in other fields (drought, hurricane damage, food production) this variability is as important for policy and practice as long term change; and (b) climate variability has a strong influence in peak riverflows around the world. To address this issue, this contribution illustrates the influence of ENSO-driven climate variability on flood risk, at both the globally aggregated scale and the scale of countries and large river basins. Although it exerts significant and widespread influences on flood peak discharges in many parts of the world, we show that ENSO does not have a statistically significant influence on flood risk once aggregated to global totals. At the scale of individual countries, though, strong relationships exist over large parts of the Earth's surface. For example, we find particularly strong anomalies of flood risk in El Niño or La Niña years (compared to all years) in southern Africa, parts of western Africa, Australia, parts of Central Eurasia (especially for El Niño), the western USA (especially for La Niña), and parts of South America. These findings have large implications for both decadal climate-risk projections and long-term future climate change
Donald McKenzie; Uma Shankar; Robert E. Keane; E. Natasha Stavros; Warren E. Heilman; Douglas G. Fox; Allen C. Riebau
Smoke from wildfires has adverse biological and social consequences, and various lines of evidence suggest that smoke from wildfires in the future may be more intense and widespread, demanding that methods be developed to address its effects on people, ecosystems, and the atmosphere. In this paper, we present the essential ingredients of a modeling system for...
Thomas P. Holmes; Karen L. Abt; Robert Huggett; Jeffrey P. Prestemon
Natural resource economists have addresssed the economic effienciency of expenditures on wildfire mitigation for nearly a century (Gope and Gorte 1979). Beginning with the work of Sparhawk (1925), the theory of efficent wildfire mitigation developed alolng conceptual lines drawn form neoclassical economics. The objective of the traditional least-cost-plus-loss model...
Patricia A. Champ; Geoffrey H. Donovan; Christopher M. Barth
The loss of homes to wildfires is an important issue in the USA and other countries. Yet many homeowners living in fire-prone areas do not undertake mitigating actions, such as clearing vegetation, to decrease the risk of losing their home. To better understand the complexity of wildfire risk-mitigation decisions and the role of perceived risk, we conducted a survey of...
Katherine Dickinson; Hannah Brenkert-Smith; Patricia Champ; Nicholas Flores
Social interactions are widely recognized as a potential influence on risk-related behaviors. We present a mediation model in which social interactions (classified as formal/informal and generic-fire-specific) are associated with beliefs about wildfire risk and mitigation options, which in turn shape wildfire mitigation behaviors. We test this model using survey data...
Brian Muller; Stacey Schulte
Long-term management of wildfire vulnerability requires strategies that address complex interactions between fire ecology and human settlement. In this paper, we examine the integration of wildfire mitigation and land use planning in county governments in the western U.S. This research relies on data from two sources. First, we conducted a survey of land use...
Climate change is altering wildfire activity across Alaska, with increased area burned projected for the future. Changes in wildfire are expected to affect the need for management and suppression resources, however the potential economic implications of these needs have not been ...
Donald McKenzie; Nancy H.F. French; Roger D. Ottmar
Wildfires are increasingly emerging as an important component of Earth system models, particularly those that involve emissions from fires and their effects on climate. Currently, there are few resources available for estimating emissions from wildfires in real time, at subcontinental scales, in a spatially consistent manner. Developing subcontinental-scale databases...
Caon, L.; Vallejo, V.R.; Ritsema, C.J.; Geissen, V.
High-intensity and fast-spreading wildfires are natural in the Mediterranean basin. However, since 1960, wildfire occurrence has increased because of changes in land use, which resulted in extensive land abandonment, increases in the fuel load and continuity in the landscape. The level of soil
Ager, Alan A; Kline, Jeffrey D; Fischer, A Paige
We describe recent advances in biophysical and social aspects of risk and their potential combined contribution to improve mitigation planning on fire-prone landscapes. The methods and tools provide an improved method for defining the spatial extent of wildfire risk to communities compared to current planning processes. They also propose an expanded role for social science to improve understanding of community-wide risk perceptions and to predict property owners' capacities and willingness to mitigate risk by treating hazardous fuels and reducing the susceptibility of dwellings. In particular, we identify spatial scale mismatches in wildfire mitigation planning and their potential adverse impact on risk mitigation goals. Studies in other fire-prone regions suggest that these scale mismatches are widespread and contribute to continued wildfire dwelling losses. We discuss how risk perceptions and behavior contribute to scale mismatches and how they can be minimized through integrated analyses of landscape wildfire transmission and social factors that describe the potential for collaboration among landowners and land management agencies. These concepts are then used to outline an integrated socioecological planning framework to identify optimal strategies for local community risk mitigation and improve landscape-scale prioritization of fuel management investments by government entities. © 2015 Society for Risk Analysis.
Alan A. Ager; Jeffrey D. Kline; A. Paige Fisher
We describe recent advances in biophysical and social aspects of risk and their potential combined contribution to improve mitigation planning on fire-prone landscapes. The methods and tools provide an improved method for defining the spatial extent of wildfire risk to communities compared to current planning processes. They also propose an expanded role for social...
Phillips, M.; Robinson, C.; Gupta, N.; Werth, D.
This report describes the development of a software tool, entitled “WildFire Ignition Resistance Estimator Wizard” (WildFIRE Wizard, Version 2.10). This software was developed within the Wildfire Ignition Resistant Home Design (WIRHD) program, sponsored by the U. S. Department of Homeland Security, Science and Technology Directorate, Infrastructure Protection & Disaster Management Division. WildFIRE Wizard is a tool that enables homeowners to take preventive actions that will reduce their home’s vulnerability to wildfire ignition sources (i.e., embers, radiant heat, and direct flame impingement) well in advance of a wildfire event. This report describes the development of the software, its operation, its technical basis and calculations, and steps taken to verify its performance.
Dixon, Timothy H; Amelung, Falk; Ferretti, Alessandro; Novali, Fabrizio; Rocca, Fabio; Dokka, Roy; Sella, Giovanni; Kim, Sang-Wan; Wdowinski, Shimon; Whitman, Dean
It has long been recognized that New Orleans is subsiding and is therefore susceptible to catastrophic flooding. Here we present a new subsidence map for the city, generated from space-based synthetic-aperture radar measurements, which reveals that parts of New Orleans underwent rapid subsidence in the three years before Hurricane Katrina struck in August 2005. One such area is next to the Mississippi River-Gulf Outlet (MRGO) canal, where levees failed during the peak storm surge: the map indicates that this weakness could be explained by subsidence of a metre or more since their construction.
Holmes, R. R.; Blanchard, S. F.; Mason, R. R.
Floods have a major impact on society and the environment. Since 1952, approximately 1,233 of 1,931 (64%) Federal disaster declarations were due directly to flooding, with an additional 297 due to hurricanes which had associated flooding. Although the overall average annual number of deaths due to flooding has decreased in the United States, the average annual flood damage is rising. According to the Munich Reinsurance Company in their publication “Schadenspiegel 3/2005”, during 1990s the world experienced as much as $500 billion in economic losses due to floods, highlighting the serious need for continued emphasis on flood-loss prevention measures. Flood-loss prevention has two major elements: mitigation (including structural flood-control measures and land-use planning and regulation) and risk awareness. Of the two, increasing risk awareness likely offers the most potential for protecting lives over the near-term and long-term sustainability in the coming years. Flood-risk awareness and risk-aware behavior is dependent on communication, involving both prescriptive and educational measures. Prescriptive measures (for example, flood warnings and stormwater ordinances) are and have been effective, but there is room for improvement. New communications technologies, particularly social media utilizing mobile, smart phones and text devices, for example, could play a significant role in increasing public awareness of long-term risk and near-term flood conditions. The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS), for example, the Federal agency that monitors the Nation’s rivers, recently released a new service that can better connect the to the public to information about flood hazards. The new service, WaterAlert (URL: http://water.usgs.gov/wateralert/), allows users to set flood notification thresholds of their own choosing for any USGS real-time streamgage. The system then sends emails or text messages to subscribers whenever the threshold conditions are met, as often as the
Russo, Ana; Gouveia, Célia M.; DaCamara, Carlos; Sousa, Pedro; Trigo, Ricardo M.
Southern European countries, and the Iberian Peninsula (IP) in particular, have been vastly affected by summer wildfires (Trigo et al., 2013). This condition is hampered by the frequent warm and dry meteorological conditions found in summer which play a significant role in the triggering and spreading of wildfires. These meteorological conditions are also particularly important for the onset and end of drought periods, a phenomenon that has recurrently affected the IP (Gouveia et al., 2012). Moreover, the IP corresponds to one of the most sensitive areas to current and future climate change, and recent and future trends towards a dryer and warmer Mediterranean climate (Sousa et al., 2014) will tend to exacerbate these problems. The main scope of this study was to investigate the impact of drought on wildfires' burned areas in the IP. The objective was to examine the correlation between drought, as expressed by both the Standardized Precipitation Index (SPI) and the Standardized Precipitation Evapotranspiration Index (SPEI) (Vicente-Serrano et al., 2010), and wildfire burned areas. The SPI and SPEI were both calculated for 4 large regions (Northwestern, Northern, Southwestern and Eastern) whose spatial patterns and seasonal fire regimes were shown to be related with constraining factors such as topography, vegetation cover and climate conditions (Trigo et al., 2013). In this study, the drought indices were determined for the time scales of 3 and 6 months for August and for 12 months in September, thus representing the summer and annual drought. The correlation between drought and burned areas during July and August was particularly significant for the 3 months SPEI and SPI relatively to the 6 and 12 time scales, which indicates that drought and fires relation is a small-size scale process. Moreover, the correlation between drought and burned areas during July and August was particularly significant for the Northern and Southwestern regions both for SPEI for 3 and 6
Kalcic, M. T.; Undersood, Lauren W.; Fletcher, Rose
Many areas in coastal Louisiana are below sea level and protected from flooding by a system of natural and man-made levees. Flooding is common when the levees are overtopped by storm surge or rising rivers. Many levees in this region are further stressed by erosion and subsidence. The floodwaters can become constricted by levees and trapped, causing prolonged inundation. Vegetative communities in coastal regions, from fresh swamp forest to saline marsh, can be negatively affected by inundation and changes in salinity. As saltwater persists, it can have a toxic effect upon marsh vegetation causing die off and conversion to open water types, destroying valuable species habitats. The length of time the water persists and the average annual salinity are important variables in modeling habitat switching (cover type change). Marsh type habitat switching affects fish, shellfish, and wildlife inhabitants, and can affect the regional ecosystem and economy. There are numerous restoration and revitalization projects underway in the coastal region, and their effects on the entire ecosystem need to be understood. For these reasons, monitoring persistent saltwater intrusion and inundation is important. For this study, persistent flooding in Louisiana coastal marshes was mapped using MODIS (Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer) time series of a Normalized Difference Water Index (NDWI). The time series data were derived for 2000 through 2009, including flooding due to Hurricane Rita in 2005 and Hurricane Ike in 2008. Using the NDWI, duration and extent of flooding can be inferred. The Time Series Product Tool (TSPT), developed at NASA SSC, is a suite of software developed in MATLAB(R) that enables improved-quality time series images to be computed using advanced temporal processing techniques. This software has been used to compute time series for monitoring temporal changes in environmental phenomena, (e.g. NDVI times series from MODIS), and was modified and used to
David Calkin; Kevin Hyde; Krista Gebert; Greg Jones
Determining the economic effectiveness of wildfire suppression activities is complicated by difficulties in identifying the area that would have burned and the associated resource value changes had suppression resources not been employed. We developed a case study using break-even analysis for two large wildfires from the 2003 fire season in western Montana -- the...
Robert W. Gray; Susan J. Prichard
The incidence of large, costly landscape-scale fires in western North America is increasing. To combat these fires, researchers and managers have expressed increased interest in investigating the effectiveness of past, stand-replacing wildfires as bottom-up controls on fire spread and severity. Specifically, how effective are past wildfires in mitigating the behavior...
Ezer, Tal; Atkinson, Larry P.; Tuleya, Robert
In October 7-9, 2016, Hurricane Matthew moved along the southeastern coast of the U.S., causing major flooding and significant damage, even to locations farther north well away from the storm's winds. Various observations, such as tide gauge data, cable measurements of the Florida Current (FC) transport, satellite altimeter data and high-frequency radar data, were analyzed to evaluate the impact of the storm. The data show a dramatic decline in the FC flow and increased coastal sea level along the U.S. coast. Weakening of the Gulf Stream (GS) downstream from the storm's area contributed to high coastal sea levels farther north. Analyses of simulations of an operational hurricane-ocean coupled model reveal the disruption that the hurricane caused to the GS flow, including a decline in transport of ∼20 Sv (1 Sv = 106 m3 s-1). In comparison, the observed FC reached a maximum transport of ∼40 Sv before the storm on September 10 and a minimum of ∼20 Sv after the storm on October 12. The hurricane impacts both the geostrophic part of the GS and the wind-driven currents, generating inertial oscillations with velocities of up to ±1 m s-1. Analysis of the observed FC transport since 1982 indicated that the magnitude of the current weakening in October 2016 was quite rare (outside 3 standard deviations from the mean). Such a large FC weakening in the past occurred more often in October and November, but is extremely rare in June-August. Similar impacts on the FC from past tropical storms and hurricanes suggest that storms may contribute to seasonal and interannual variations in the FC. The results also demonstrated the extended range of coastal impacts that remote storms can cause through their influence on ocean currents.
Ward, N. D.; Osborne, T.; Dye, T.; Julian, P.
The last several years have been marked by a high incidence of Atlantic tropical cyclones making landfall as powerful hurricanes or tropical storms. For example, in 2016 Hurricane Matthew devastated parts of the Caribbean and the southeastern United States. In 2017, this region was further battered by hurricanes Irma and Maria. Here, we present water quality data collected in the intracoastal waterway near the Whitney Lab for Marine Bioscience during hurricanes Matthew and Irma, a region that experienced flooding during both storms. YSI Exo 2 sondes were deployed to measure pH, salinity, temperature, dissolved O2, fluorescent dissolved organic matter (fDOM), turbidity, and Chlorophyll-a (Chl-a) on a 15 minute interval. The Hurricane Matthew sonde deployment failed as soon as the storm hit, but revealed an interesting phenomenon leading up to the storm that was also observed during Irma. Salinity in the intracoastal waterway (off the Whitney Lab dock) typically varies from purely marine to 15-20 psu throughout the tidal cycle. However, several days before both storms approached the Florida coast (i.e. when they were near the Caribbean), the salinity signal became purely marine, overriding any tidal signal. Anecdotally, storm drains were already filled up to street level prior to the storm hitting, poising the region for immense flooding and storm surge. The opposite effect was observed after Irma moved past FL. Water became much fresher than normal for several days and it took almost a week to return to "normal" salinity tidal cycles. As both storms hit, turbidity increased by an order of magnitude for a several hour period. fDOM and O2 behaved similar to salinity during and after Irma, showing a mostly marine signal (e.g. higher O2, lower fDOM) in the lead up, and brief switch to more freshwater influence the week after the storm. Chl-a peaked several days after the storm, presumably due to mobilization of nutrient rich flood and waste waters and subsequent algae
Thorndahl, Søren Liedtke; Nielsen, Jesper Ellerbæk; Jensen, David Getreuer
Flooding produced by high-intensive local rainfall and drainage system capacity exceedance can have severe impacts in cities. In order to prepare cities for these types of flood events – especially in the future climate – it is valuable to be able to simulate these events numerically both...... historically and in real-time. There is a rather untested potential in real-time prediction of urban floods. In this paper radar data observations with different spatial and temporal resolution, radar nowcasts of 0–2 h lead time, and numerical weather models with lead times up to 24 h are used as inputs...... to an integrated flood and drainage systems model in order to investigate the relative difference between different inputs in predicting future floods. The system is tested on a small town Lystrup in Denmark, which has been flooded in 2012 and 2014. Results show it is possible to generate detailed flood maps...
Thaler, Thomas; Fuchs, Sven; Priest, Sally J.; Doorn, Neelke
Editorial to a special edition of the journal. Consequences of extreme hydrological events, such as those recently experienced in United States (e.g. Hurricane Harvey or Irma in 2017), floods in South Asia in 2017, or the Central European floods in 2013 and 2016, have again focused the attention of society, policy makers and academic scholars on questions of how to reduce vulnerability to such events, especially when faced with the dual challenges of climate and societal change. Not only is t...
Wildfires are common to the Mediterranean region due to its defined dry season and long historical anthropogenic activities. Most of post-wildfire studies focus on mountains areas and thus refer to the hill-slope and its physical characteristics, e.g. morphology, length, angles, and aspect; its soil characteristics, e.g. type, infiltration rate, repellency; and its vegetative covers, e.g. planted trees vs. natural forest or native vs. exotic vegetation. In contrary there is very limited literature focusing on ecological and hydro-geomorphic aspects of post-wildfire of riparian vegetation / zone probably because of its negligible burned area relative to the spread of the fire, sometimes, over the whole watershed area. The limited literature on the topic is surprising given the fact that riparian vegetation zone has been acknowledged as a unique and important habitat supporting rich biodiversity. Herein we report on a wildfire event occurred on October 14th 2009 in a river section of Nahal Grar, Northern Negev Desert, Israel. The wildfire although was limited in its area (only 3 hectare) extended over the channel alone from bank to bank and thus provide a unique case study of completely burn down of riparian vegetation, mainly dense stands of Common Red (Australis Phragmites. Therefore a detailed study of this event provides an opportunity to tackle one of the basics questions which is determining the rate of natural restoration process that act at the immediate time after the wildfire event occurred. This type of information is most valuable to professional and stakeholders for better management of post-fire riparian zones. The results of the study suggest that under stable conditions, i.e. no major flood events occurred; disturbance time was short and ranged over 200 days due to, almost, immediate recovery of the riparian vegetation. However the re-growth of the riparian vegetation was not even but rather deferential and more complex then reported in the literature
damage, causes of flooding, human response to flooding and severity of ... from moving out. Source of ... Man responds to flood hazards through adjustment, flood abatement ... action to minimize or ameliorate flood hazards; flood abatement.
Pan, Y.; Archer, C. L.
Hurricane Harvey brought to the Texas coast possibly the heaviest rain ever recorded in U.S. history, which then caused flooding at unprecedented levels. Previous studies have shown that large arrays of offshore wind farms can extract kinetic energy from a hurricane and thus reduce the wind and storm surge. This study will quantitatively test weather the offshore turbines may also affect precipitation patterns. The Weather Research Forecast model is employed to model Harvey and the offshore wind farms are parameterized as elevated drag and turbulence kinetic energy sources. The turbines (7.8 MW Enercon-126 with rotor diameter D=127 m) are placed along the coast of Texas and Louisiana within 100 km from the shore, where the water depth is below 200 meters. Three spacing between turbines are considered (with the number of turbines in parenthesis): 7D×7D (149,936), 9D×9D (84,339), and 11D×11D (56,226). A fourth case (9D×9D) with a smaller area and thus less turbines (33,363) is added to the simulations to emphasize the impacts of offshore turbines installed specifically to protect the city of Houston, which was flooded heavily during hurricane Harvey. The model is integrated for 24 hours from 00UTC Aug 26th, 2017 to 00UTC Aug 27th, 2017. Model results indicate that the offshore wind farms have a strong impact on the distribution of 24-hour accumulated precipitation, with an obvious decrease onshore, downstream of the wind farms, and an increase in the offshore areas, upstream of or within the wind farms. A sector covering the metro-Houston area is chosen to study the sensitivity of the four different wind farm layouts. The spatial-average 24-hour accumulated precipitation is decreased by 37%, 28%, 20% and 25% respectively for the four cases. Compared with the control case with no wind turbines, increased horizontal wind divergence and lower vertical velocity are found where the precipitation is reduced onshore, whereas increased horizontal wind convergence and
Hurricanes present major hazards to the United States. Associated with extreme winds, heavy rainfall, and storm surge, landfalling hurricanes often cause enormous structural damage to coastal regions. Hurricane damage risk assessment provides the basis for loss mitigation and related policy-making. Current hurricane risk models, however, often oversimplify the complex processes of hurricane damage. This dissertation aims to improve existing hurricane risk assessment methodology by coherently modeling the spatial-temporal processes of storm landfall, hazards, and damage. Numerical modeling technologies are used to investigate the multiplicity of hazards associated with landfalling hurricanes. The application and effectiveness of current weather forecasting technologies to predict hurricane hazards is investigated. In particular, the Weather Research and Forecasting model (WRF), with Geophysical Fluid Dynamics Laboratory (GFDL)'s hurricane initialization scheme, is applied to the simulation of the wind and rainfall environment during hurricane landfall. The WRF model is further coupled with the Advanced Circulation (AD-CIRC) model to simulate storm surge in coastal regions. A case study examines the multiple hazards associated with Hurricane Isabel (2003). Also, a risk assessment methodology is developed to estimate the probability distribution of hurricane storm surge heights along the coast, particularly for data-scarce regions, such as New York City. This methodology makes use of relatively simple models, specifically a statistical/deterministic hurricane model and the Sea, Lake and Overland Surges from Hurricanes (SLOSH) model, to simulate large numbers of synthetic surge events, and conducts statistical analysis. The estimation of hurricane landfall probability and hazards are combined with structural vulnerability models to estimate hurricane damage risk. Wind-induced damage mechanisms are extensively studied. An innovative windborne debris risk model is
Evans, Cynthia A.; Wilkinson, M. J.; Eppler, Dean
In September 2008, Hurricane Ike made landfall on Galveston Bay, close to the NASA Johnson Space Center (JSC). The storm flooded much of the area with a storm surge ranging from 11 -20 feet. The Bolivar peninsula, the southeastern coast of Galveston Bay, experienced the brunt of the surge. Several agencies collected excellent imagery baselines before the storm and complementary data a few days afterward that helped define the impacts of the storm. In April of 2011, a team of scientists and astronauts from JSC conducted field mapping exercises along the Bolivar Peninsula, the section of the Galveston Bay coast most impacted by the storm. Astronauts routinely observe and document coastal changes from orbit aboard the International Space Station. As part of their basic Earth Science training, scientists at the Johnson Space Center take astronauts out for field mapping exercises so that they can better recognize and understand features and processes that they will later observe from the International Space Station. Using pre -storm baseline images of the Bolivar Peninsula near Rollover Pass and Gilchrist (NOAA/Google Earth Imagery and USGS aerial imagery and lidar data), the astronauts mapped current coastline positions at defined locations, and related their findings to specific coastal characteristics, including channel, jetties, and other developments. In addition to mapping, we dug trenches along both the Gulf of Mexico coast as well as the Galveston Bay coast of the Bolivar peninsula to determine the depth of the scouring from the storm on the Gulf side, and the amount of deposition of the storm surge deposits on the Bay side of the peninsula. The storm signature was easy to identify by sharp sediment transitions and, in the case of storm deposits, a layer of storm debris (roof shingles, PVC pipes, etc) and black, organic rich layers containing buried sea grasses in areas that were marshes before the storm. The amount of deposition was generally about 20 -25 cm
Van Metre, Peter C.; Horowitz, Arthur J.; Mahler, Barbara J.; Foreman, William T.; Fuller, Christopher C.; Burkhardt, Mark R.; Elrick, Kent A.; Furlong, Edward T.; Skrobialowski, Stanley C.; Smith, James J.; Wilson, Jennifer T.; Zaugg, Stephen D.
Concerns about the effect of pumping contaminated flood waters into Lake Pontchartrain following the hurricanes of 2005 prompted the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) to sample street mud, canal-suspended sediment, and bottom sediment in Lake Pontchartain. The samples were analyzed for a wide variety of potential inorganic and organic contaminants. Results indicate that contamination of lake sediment relative to other urban lakes and to accepted sedimentquality guidelines was limited to a relatively small area offshore from the Metairie Outfall Canal (popularly known as the 17th Street Canal) and that this contamination is probably transient.
Full Text Available Although the field has seen great advances in hurricane prediction and response, the economic toll from hurricanes on U.S. communities continues to rise. We present data from Hurricanes Earl (2010, Irene (2011, Isaac (2012, and Sandy (2012 to show that individual and household decisions contribute to this vulnerability. From phone surveys of residents in communities threatened by impending hurricanes, we identify five decision biases or obstacles that interfere with residents’ ability to protect themselves and minimize property damage: (1 temporal and spatial myopia, (2 poor mental models of storm risk, (3 gaps between objective and subjective probability estimates, (4 prior storm experience, and (5 social factors. We then discuss ways to encourage better decision making and reduce the economic and emotional impacts of hurricanes, using tools such as decision defaults (requiring residents to opt out of precautions rather than opt in and tailoring internet-based forecast information so that it is local, specific, and emphasizes impacts rather than probability.
Jonathan L. Case
Full Text Available A deep tropical moisture connection to Hurricane Joaquin led to historic rainfall and flooding over South Carolina from 3 to 5 October 2015, erasing the prevailing moderate to severe meteorological and agricultural drought that had developed from May through September. NASA’s Global Precipitation Mission constellation of satellites and a real-time implementation of the NASA Land Information System highlight the precipitation and land surface response of this event. Keywords: Extreme precipitation, Flooding, NASA, Land surface modeling, Soil moisture
S. R. Hosseini
Full Text Available In this paper, the possible connection between the frequency of Atlantic hurricanes to the climate change, mainly the variation in the Atlantic Ocean surface temperature has been investigated. The correlation between the observed hurricane frequency for different categories of hurricane’s intensity and Sea Surface Temperature (SST has been examined over the Atlantic Tropical Cyclogenesis Regions (ACR. The results suggest that in general, the frequency of hurricanes have a high correlation with SST. In particular, the frequency of extreme hurricanes with Category 5 intensity has the highest correlation coefficient (R = 0.82. In overall, the analyses in this work demonstrates the influence of the climate change condition on the Atlantic hurricanes and suggest a strong correlation between the frequency of extreme hurricanes and SST in the ACR.
Schwartz, Rebecca M; Gillezeau, Christina N; Liu, Bian; Lieberman-Cribbin, Wil; Taioli, Emanuela
Hurricane Sandy hit the eastern coast of the United States in October 2012, causing billions of dollars in damage and acute physical and mental health problems. The long-term mental health consequences of the storm and their predictors have not been studied. New York City and Long Island residents completed questionnaires regarding their initial Hurricane Sandy exposure and mental health symptoms at baseline and 1 year later (N = 130). There were statistically significant decreases in anxiety scores (mean difference = -0.33, p Hurricane Sandy has an impact on PTSD symptoms that persists over time. Given the likelihood of more frequent and intense hurricanes due to climate change, future hurricane recovery efforts must consider the long-term effects of hurricane exposure on mental health, especially on PTSD, when providing appropriate assistance and treatment.
The dynamics of plant regeneration via seed and vegetative spread in coastal wetlands dictate the nature of community reassembly that takes place after hurricanes or sea level rise. The objectives of my project were to evaluate the potential effects of saltwater intrusion and flooding of Hurricanes Katrina and Rita on seedling regeneration in coastal wetlands of the Gulf Coast. Specifically I tested hypotheses to determine for species in fresh, brackish and salt marshes of the Gulf Coast if 1) the pattern of seed germination and seedling recruitment differed with distance from the shoreline, and 2) seed germination and seedling recruitment for various species were reduced in higher levels of water depth and salinity. Regarding Hypothesis 1, seedling densities increased with distance from the shoreline in fresh and brackish water marshes while decreasing with distance from the shoreline in salt marshes. Also to test Hypothesis 1, I used a greenhouse seed bank assay to examine seed germination from seed banks collected at distances from the shoreline in response to various water depths and salinity levels using a nested factorial design. For all marsh types, the influence of water level and salinity on seed germination shifted with distance from the shoreline (i.e., three way interaction of the main effects of distance nested within site, water depth, and salinity). Data from the seed bank assay were also used to test Hypothesis 2. The regeneration of species from fresh, brackish, and salt marshes were reduced in conditions of high salinity and/or water, so that following hurricanes or sea level rise, seedling regeneration could be reduced. Among the species of these coastal marshes, there was some flexibility of response, so that at least some species were able to germinate in either high or low salinity. Salt marshes had a few fresher marsh species in the seed bank that would not germinate without a period of fresh water input (e.g., Sagittaria lancifolia) as well
Jaimes, A.; Gaur, N.; Aparecido, L. M. T.; Everett, M. E.; Knappett, P.; Lawing, M.; Majumder, S.; Miller, G. R.; Moore, G. W.; Morgan, C.; Mitra, B.; Noormets, A.; Mohanty, B.
The unprecedented destructive hurricane Harvey struck eastern Texas from August 25th to 29th, 2017. As the hurricane moved through the region, it dropped the equivalent of one year of precipitation within a five-day period, with peak accumulations near 165 cm. Rainfall intensity and distribution varied across the region but Harris County and portions of the lower Brazos River Basin experienced devastating flooding due to high run-off and water accumulation in the built-up area. In this study, we use a multidisciplinary approach to quantify the dynamics of carbon and water flux at different spatiotemporal resolution across land types both in and outside of the path of hurricane Harvey using a combination of remote sensing and fixed monitoring platforms of the Texas Water Observatory (TWO). We used LANDSAT imagery to compute Soil Adjusted Vegetation Index, Enhanced Vegetation Index, and Normalized Difference Moisture Index. MODIS ET, GPP, and sap flow data were used in combination with eddy covariance and meteorological data from seven sites of the TWO representative of biomes ranging from low tidal salt marsh of the Gulf Coastal Plain, Shrubland, Improved Pasture, Mixed and Native Prairies, and Crop sites. We hypothesize alteration in ecohydrological characteristics across land types, which were in the path of hurricane due to changes in vegetation structure. Specifically we used trend analysis to detect structural changes in temporal dynamics of sap flow, ET, and carbon to pulse response. In addition, we monitored trace metal concentration of soil and water pores before and immediately after the hurricane in order to predict the potential of any of the toxic metal (loid)s being mobilized in the natural water resources as a function of the changes in the redox gradient. Preliminary results indicated that tree water use was reduced on average 30% below normal days. Porewater concentration of some of the metal (loid) concentration increased (Fe, Mn, Co, As, Sb, Pb
David Kelly; David Letson; Forest Nelson; David S. Nolan; Daniel Solis
This paper studies how individuals update subjective risk perceptions in response to hurricane track forecast information, using a unique data set from an event market, the Hurricane Futures Market (HFM). We derive a theoretical Bayesian framework which predicts how traders update their perceptions of the probability of a hurricane making landfall in a certain range of coastline. Our results suggest that traders behave in a way consistent with Bayesian updating but this behavior is based on t...
Boose, Emery Robert; Foster, David Russell; Fluet, Marcheterre
Hurricanes represent an important natural disturbance process to tropical and temperate forests in many coastal areas of the world. The complex patterns of damage created in forests by hurricane winds result from the interaction of meteorological, physiographic, and biotic factors on a range of spatial scales. To improve our understanding of these factors and of the role of catastrophic hurricane wind as a disturbance process, we take an integrative approach. A simple meteorological model (HU...
Lee, David C; Smith, Silas W; McStay, Christopher M; Portelli, Ian; Goldfrank, Lewis R; Husk, Gregg; Shah, Nirav R
A freestanding, 911-receiving emergency department was implemented at Bellevue Hospital Center during the recovery efforts after Hurricane Sandy to compensate for the increased volume experienced at nearby hospitals. Because inpatient services at several hospitals remained closed for months, emergency volume increased significantly. Thus, in collaboration with the New York State Department of Health and other partners, the Health and Hospitals Corporation and Bellevue Hospital Center opened a freestanding emergency department without on-site inpatient care. The successful operation of this facility hinged on key partnerships with emergency medical services and nearby hospitals. Also essential was the establishment of an emergency critical care ward and a system to monitor emergency department utilization at affected hospitals. The results of this experience, we believe, can provide a model for future efforts to rebuild emergency care capacity after a natural disaster such as Hurricane Sandy. (Disaster Med Public Health Preparedness. 2014;0:1-4).
Doyle, Thomas W.
Mangrove ecosystems are at their most northern limit along the coastline of Florida and in isolated areas of the gulf coast in Louisiana and Texas. Mangroves are marine-based forests that have adapted to colonize and persist in salty intertidal waters. Three species of mangrove trees are common to the United States, black mangrove (Avicennia germinans), white mangrove (Laguncularia racemosa), and red mangrove (Rhizophora mangle). Mangroves are highly productive ecosystems and provide valuable habitat for fisheries and shorebirds. They are susceptible to lightning and hurricane disturbance, both of which occur frequently in south Florida. Climate change studies predict that, while these storms may not become more frequent, they may become more intense with warming sea temperatures. Sea-level rise alone has the potential for increasing the severity of storm surge, particularly in areas where coastal habitats and barrier shorelines are rapidly deteriorating. Given this possibility, U.S. Geological Survey researchers modeled the impact of hurricanes on south Florida mangrove communities.
Boisrame, G. F. S.; Thompson, S. E.; Stephens, S.; Collins, B.; Kelly, M.; Tague, N.
Fire suppression in many dry forest types has left a legacy of dense, homogeneous forests. Such landscapes have high water demands and fuel loads, and when burned can result in catastrophically large fires. These characteristics are undesirable in the face of projected warming and drying in the Western US. This project explores the potential of managed wildfire - a forest management strategy in which fires caused by lightning are allowed to burn naturally as long as certain safety parameters are met - to reverse the effects of fire suppression. The Illilouette Creek Basin in Yosemite National Park has experienced 40 years of managed wildfire, reducing forest cover and increasing meadow and shrubland areas. We have collected evidence from field measurements and remote sensing which suggest that managed wildfire increases landscape and hydrologic heterogeneity, and likely improves resilience to disturbances such as fire and drought. Vegetation maps created from aerial photos show an increase in landscape heterogeneity following the introduction of managed wildfire. Soil moisture observations during the drought years of 2013-2016 suggest that transitions from dense forest to shrublands or meadows can increase summer soil moisture. In the winter of 2015-2016, snow depth measurements showed deeper spring snowpacks in burned areas compared to dense forests. Our study provides a unique view of relatively long-term effects of managed wildfire on vegetation change, ecohydrology, and drought resistance. Understanding these effects is increasingly important as the use of managed wildfire becomes more widely accepted, and as the likelihood of both drought and wildfire increases.
Schoppenhorst, Charles E.
The floods of June-July 1957 exceeded those previously known on some of the tributaries of the Wabash and White Rivers in central Indiana. Six lives were lost, 1,282 dwellings were damaged, and 125 business places were flooded. Heavy rains of June 27 and 28 resulted from remnants of Hurricane Audrey meeting a front that lay across central Indiana. Heaviest rainfall reported for the storm period at a U.S. Weather Bureau station was 10.15 inches at Rockville. Previous maximum stages during the period of record were exceeded at 12 gaging stations. The peak stage on Raccoon Creek at Mansfield exceeded the previous maximum known stage, which occurred in 1875. One of the notable rates of discharge recorded was 245 cfs per square mile from a drainage area of 440 square miles on Raccoon Creek at Coxville.
van Heerden, I. L.
Recent floods along the Atlantic and Gulf seaboards and elsewhere in the world before Katrina had demonstrated the complexity of public health impacts including trauma; fires; chemical, sewerage, and corpse contamination of air and water; and diseases. We realized that Louisiana's vulnerability was exacerbated because forty percent of the state is coastal zone in which 70% of the population resides. Ninety percent of this zone is near or below sea level and protected by man-made hurricane-protection levees. New Orleans ranked among the highest in the nation with respect to potential societal, mortality, and economic impacts. Recognizing that emergency responders had in the past been unprepared for the extent of the public health impacts of these complex flooding disasters, we created a multi-disciplinary, multi-campus research center to address these issues for New Orleans. The Louisiana Board of Regents, through its millennium Health Excellence Fund, awarded a 5-year contract to the Center in 2001. The research team combined the resources of natural scientists, social scientists, engineers, and the mental health and medical communities. We met annually with a Board of Advisors, made up of federal, state, local government, and non-governmental agency officials, first responders and emergency managers. Their advice was invaluable in acquiring various datasets and directing aspects of the various research efforts. Our center developed detailed models for assessment and amelioration of public health impacts due to hurricanes and major floods. Initial research had showed that a Category 3 storm would cause levee overtopping, and that most levee systems were unprotected from the impacts of storm-induced wave erosion. Sections of levees with distinct sags suggested the beginnings of foundation and subsidence problems. We recognized that a slow moving Cat 3 could flood up to the eaves of houses and would have residence times of weeks. The resultant mix of sewage, corpses
Kim, Hong K; Takematsu, Mai; Biary, Rana; Williams, Nicholas; Hoffman, Robert S; Smith, Silas W
Major adverse climatic events (MACEs) in heavily-populated areas can inflict severe damage to infrastructure, disrupting essential municipal and commercial services. Compromised health care delivery systems and limited utilities such as electricity, heating, potable water, sanitation, and housing, place populations in disaster areas at risk of toxic exposures. Hurricane Sandy made landfall on October 29, 2012 and caused severe infrastructure damage in heavily-populated areas. The prolonged electrical outage and damage to oil refineries caused a gasoline shortage and rationing unseen in the USA since the 1970s. This study explored gasoline exposures and clinical outcomes in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy. Prospectively collected, regional poison control center (PCC) data regarding gasoline exposure cases from October 29, 2012 (hurricane landfall) through November 28, 2012 were reviewed and compared to the previous four years. The trends of gasoline exposures, exposure type, severity of clinical outcome, and hospital referral rates were assessed. Two-hundred and eighty-three gasoline exposures were identified, representing an 18 to 283-fold increase over the previous four years. The leading exposure route was siphoning (53.4%). Men comprised 83.0% of exposures; 91.9% were older than 20 years of age. Of 273 home-based calls, 88.7% were managed on site. Asymptomatic exposures occurred in 61.5% of the cases. However, minor and moderate toxic effects occurred in 12.4% and 3.5% of cases, respectively. Gastrointestinal (24.4%) and pulmonary (8.4%) symptoms predominated. No major outcomes or deaths were reported. Hurricane Sandy significantly increased gasoline exposures. While the majority of exposures were managed at home with minimum clinical toxicity, some patients experienced more severe symptoms. Disaster plans should incorporate public health messaging and regional PCCs for public health promotion and toxicological surveillance.
Swayze, G. A.; Furlong, E. T.; Livo, K. E.
New Orleans endured flooding on a massive scale subsequent to Hurricane Katrina in August of 2005. Contaminant plumes were noticeable in satellite images of the city in the days following flooding. Many of these plumes were caused by oil, gasoline, and diesel that leaked from inundated vehicles, gas stations, and refineries. News reports also suggested that the flood waters were contaminated with sewage from breached pipes. Effluent plumes such as these pose a potential health hazard to humans and wildlife in the aftermath of hurricanes and potentially from other catastrophic events (e.g., earthquakes, shipping accidents, chemical spills, and terrorist attacks). While the extent of effluent plumes can be gauged with synthetic aperture radar and broad- band visible-infrared images (Rykhus, 2005) (e.g., Radarsat and Landsat ETM+) the composition of the plumes could not be determined. These instruments lack the spectral resolution necessary to do chemical identification. Imaging spectroscopy may help solve this problem. Over 60 flight lines of NASA Airborne Visible/Infrared Imaging Spectrometer (AVIRIS) data were collected over New Orleans, the Mississippi Delta, and the Gulf Coast from one to two weeks after Katrina while the contaminated water was being pumped out of flooded areas. These data provide a unique opportunity to test if imaging spectrometer data can be used to identify the chemistry of these flood-related plumes. Many chemicals have unique spectral signatures in the ultraviolet to near-infrared range (0.2 - 2.5 microns) that can be used as fingerprints for their identification. We are particularly interested in detecting thin films of oil, gasoline, diesel, and raw sewage suspended on or in water. If these materials can be successfully differentiated in the lab then we will use spectral-shape matching algorithms to look for their spectral signatures in the AVIRIS data collected over New Orleans and other areas impacted by Katrina. If imaging spectroscopy
Jeff Kline; Alan A. Ager; Paige Fischer
The need for improved methods for managing wildfire risk is becoming apparent as uncharacteristically large wildfires in the western US and elsewhere exceed government capacities for their control and suppression. We propose a coupled biophysical-social framework to managing wildfire risk that relies on wildfire simulation to identify spatial patterns of wildfire risk...
Khalid, A.; Ferreira, C.
Coastal flooding is becoming a major threat to increased population in the coastal areas. To protect coastal communities from tropical storms & hurricane damages, early warning systems are being developed. These systems have the capability of real time flood forecasting to identify hazardous coastal areas and aid coastal communities in rescue operations. State of the art hydrodynamic models forced by atmospheric forcing have given modelers the ability to forecast storm surge, water levels and currents. This helps to identify the areas threatened by intense storms. Study on Chesapeake Bay area has gained national importance because of its combined riverine and coastal phenomenon, which leads to greater uncertainty in flood predictions. This study presents an automated flood forecast system developed by following Advanced Circulation (ADCIRC) Surge Guidance System (ASGS) guidelines and tailored to take in riverine and coastal boundary forcing, thus includes all the hydrodynamic processes to forecast total water in the Potomac River. As studies on tidal and riverine flow interaction are very scarce in number, our forecast system would be a scientific tool to examine such area and fill the gaps with precise prediction for Potomac River. Real-time observations from National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) and field measurements have been used as model boundary feeding. The model performance has been validated by using major historical riverine and coastal flooding events. Hydrodynamic model ADCIRC produced promising predictions for flood inundation areas. As better forecasts can be achieved by using coupled models, this system is developed to take boundary conditions from Global WaveWatchIII for the research purposes. Wave and swell propagation will be fed through Global WavewatchIII model to take into account the effects of swells and currents. This automated forecast system is currently undergoing rigorous testing to include any missing parameters which
A. D. Jayakaran; T. M. Williams; H. Ssegane; D. M. Amatya; B. Song; C. C. Trettin
Hurricanes are infrequent but influential disruptors of ecosystem processes in the southeastern Atlantic and Gulf coasts. Every southeastern forested wetland has the potential to be struck by a tropical cyclone. We examined the impact of Hurricane Hugo on two paired coastal watersheds in South Carolina in terms of stream flow and vegetation dynamics, both before and after the hurricane's passage in 1989. The study objectives were to quantify the magnitude and timing of changes including a rev...
Xian, Siyuan; Yin, Jie; Lin, Ning; Oppenheimer, Michael
Coastal flood protection measures have been widely implemented to improve flood resilience. However, protection levels vary among coastal megacities globally. This study compares the distinct flood protection standards for two coastal megacities, New York City and Shanghai, and investigates potential influences such as risk factors and past flood events. Extreme value analysis reveals that, compared to NYC, Shanghai faces a significantly higher flood hazard. Flood inundation analysis indicates that Shanghai has a higher exposure to extreme flooding. Meanwhile, Shanghai's urban development, population, and economy have increased much faster than NYC's over the last three decades. These risk factors provide part of the explanation for the implementation of a relatively high level of protection (e.g. reinforced concrete sea-wall designed for a 200-year flood return level) in Shanghai and low protection (e.g. vertical brick and stone walls and sand dunes) in NYC. However, individual extreme flood events (typhoons in 1962, 1974, and 1981) seem to have had a greater impact on flood protection decision-making in Shanghai, while NYC responded significantly less to past events (with the exception of Hurricane Sandy). Climate change, sea level rise, and ongoing coastal development are rapidly changing the hazard and risk calculus for both cities and both would benefit from a more systematic and dynamic approach to coastal protection. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
Riveros-Iregui, D. A.; Moser, H. A.; Christenson, E. C.; Gray, J.; Hedgespeth, M. L.; Jass, T. L.; Lowry, D. S.; Martin, K.; Nichols, E. G.; Stewart, J. R.; Emanuel, R. E.
In October 2016, Hurricane Matthew brought extreme flooding to eastern North Carolina, including record regional flooding along the Lumber River and its tributaries in the North Carolina Coastal Plain. Situated in a region dominated by large-scale crop-cultivation and containing some of the highest densities of concentrated animal feeding operations (CAFOs) and animal processing operations in the U.S., the Lumber River watershed is also home to the Lumbee Tribe of American Indians. Most of the tribe's 60,000+ members live within or immediately adjacent to the 3,000 km2 watershed where they maintain deep cultural and historical connections. The region, however, also suffers from high rates of poverty and large disparities in healthcare, education, and infrastructure, conditions exacerbated by Hurricane Matthew. We summarize ongoing efforts to characterize the short- and long-term impacts of extreme flooding on water quality in (1) low gradient streams and riverine wetlands of the watershed; (2) surficial aquifers, which provide water resources for the local communities, and (3) public drinking water supplies, which derive from deeper, confined aquifers but whose infrastructure suffered widespread damage following Hurricane Matthew. Our results provide mechanistic understanding of flood-related connectivity across multiple hydrologic compartments, and provide important implications for how hydrological natural hazards combine with land use to drive water quality impacts and affect vulnerable populations.
Fandrich, K. M.; Pennington, D.
Each year, tropical systems impact thousands of people worldwide. Current research shows a correlation between the intensity and frequency of hurricanes and the changing climate. However, little is known about other prominent hurricane features. This includes information about hurricane track length (the total distance traveled from tropical depression through a hurricane's final category assignment) and how this distance may have changed with time. Also unknown is the typical duration of a hurricane stage, such as tropical storm to category one, and if the time spent in each stage has changed in recent decades. This research aims to examine changes in hurricane stage duration and track lengths for the 319 storms in NOAA's National Ocean Service Hurricane Reanalysis dataset that reached Category 2 - 5 from 1980 - 2015. Based on evident ocean warming, it is hypothesized that a general increase in track length with time will be detected, thus modern hurricanes are traveling a longer distance than past hurricanes. It is also expected that stage durations are decreasing with time so that hurricanes mature faster than in past decades. For each storm, coordinates are acquired at 4-times daily intervals throughout its duration and track lengths are computed for each 6-hour period. Total track lengths are then computed and storms are analyzed graphically and statistically by category for temporal track length changes. The stage durations of each storm are calculated as the time difference between two consecutive stages. Results indicate that average track lengths for Cat 2 and 3 hurricanes are increasing through time. These findings show that these hurricanes are traveling a longer distance than earlier Cat 2 and 3 hurricanes. In contrast, average track lengths for Cat 4 and 5 hurricanes are decreasing through time, showing less distance traveled than earlier decades. Stage durations for all Cat 2, 4 and 5 storms decrease through the decades but Cat 3 storms show a
Harry V. Wang
Full Text Available Hurricane Sandy inflicted heavy damage in New York City and the New Jersey coast as the second costliest storm in history. A large-scale, unstructured grid storm tide model, Semi-implicit Eulerian Lagrangian Finite Element (SELFE, was used to hindcast water level variation during Hurricane Sandy in the mid-Atlantic portion of the U.S. East Coast. The model was forced by eight tidal constituents at the model’s open boundary, 1500 km away from the coast, and the wind and pressure fields from atmospheric model Regional Atmospheric Modeling System (RAMS provided by Weatherflow Inc. The comparisons of the modeled storm tide with the NOAA gauge stations from Montauk, NY, Long Island Sound, encompassing New York Harbor, Atlantic City, NJ, to Duck, NC, were in good agreement, with an overall root mean square error and relative error in the order of 15–20 cm and 5%–7%, respectively. Furthermore, using large-scale model outputs as the boundary conditions, a separate sub-grid model that incorporates LIDAR data for the major portion of the New York City was also set up to investigate the detailed inundation process. The model results compared favorably with USGS’ Hurricane Sandy Mapper database in terms of its timing, local inundation area, and the depth of the flooding water. The street-level inundation with water bypassing the city building was created and the maximum extent of horizontal inundation was calculated, which was within 30 m of the data-derived estimate by USGS.
DeLong, Stephen B.; Youberg, Ann M.; DeLong, Whitney M.; Murphy, Brendan P.
Flooding and erosion after wildfires present increasing hazard as climate warms, semi-arid lands become drier, population increases, and the urban interface encroaches farther into wildlands. We quantify post-wildfire erosion in a steep, initially unchannelized, 7.5 ha headwater catchment following the 2011 Horseshoe 2 Fire in the Chiricahua Mountains of southeastern Arizona. Using time-lapse cameras, rain gauges, and repeat surveys by terrestrial laser scanner, we quantify the response of a burned landscape to subsequent precipitation events. Repeat surveys provide detailed pre-and post-rainfall measurements of landscape form associated with a range of weather events. The first post-fire precipitation led to sediment delivery equivalent to 0.017 m of erosion from hillslopes and 0.12 m of erosion from colluvial hollows. Volumetrically, 69% of sediment yield was generated from hillslope erosion and 31% was generated from gully channel establishment in colluvial hollows. Processes on hillslopes included erosion by extensive shallow overland flow, formation of rills and gullies, and generation of sediment-laden flows and possibly debris flows. Subsequent smaller rain events caused ongoing hillslope erosion and local deposition and erosion in gullies. Winter freeze-thaw led to soil expansion, likely related to frost-heaving, causing a net centimeter-scale elevation increase across soil-mantled slopes. By characterizing landscape form, the properties of near-surface materials, and measuring both precipitation and landscape change, we can improve our empirical understanding of landscape response to environmental forcing. This detailed approach to studying landscape response to wildfires may be useful in the improvement of predictive models of flood, debris flow and sedimentation hazards used in post-wildfire response assessments and land management, and may help improve process-based models of landscape evolution.
DeLong, Stephen B.; Youberg, Ann M.; DeLong, Whitney M.; Murphy, Brendan P.
Flooding and erosion after wildfires present increasing hazard as climate warms, semi-arid lands become drier, population increases, and the urban interface encroaches farther into wildlands. We quantify post-wildfire erosion in a steep, initially unchannelized, 7.5 ha headwater catchment following the 2011 Horseshoe 2 Fire in the Chiricahua Mountains of southeastern Arizona. Using time-lapse cameras, rain gauges, and repeat surveys by terrestrial laser scanner, we quantify the response of a burned landscape to subsequent precipitation events. Repeat surveys provide detailed pre-and post-rainfall measurements of landscape form associated with a range of weather events. The first post-fire precipitation led to sediment delivery equivalent to 0.017 m of erosion from hillslopes and 0.12 m of erosion from colluvial hollows. Volumetrically, 69% of sediment yield was generated from hillslope erosion and 31% was generated from gully channel establishment in colluvial hollows. Processes on hillslopes included erosion by extensive shallow overland flow, formation of rills and gullies, and generation of sediment-laden flows and possibly debris flows. Subsequent smaller rain events caused ongoing hillslope erosion and local deposition and erosion in gullies. Winter freeze-thaw led to soil expansion, likely related to frost-heaving, causing a net centimeter-scale elevation increase across soil-mantled slopes. By characterizing landscape form, the properties of near-surface materials, and measuring both precipitation and landscape change, we can improve our empirical understanding of landscape response to environmental forcing. This detailed approach to studying landscape response to wildfires may be useful in the improvement of predictive models of flood, debris flow and sedimentation hazards used in post-wildfire response assessments and land management, and may help improve process-based models of landscape evolution.
particular year. The probability model is based on the wildfire point process. Assuming a smooth intensity function, a locally weighted likelihood fit is used, which incorporates the group effect. A logit model is used under the assumption of the existence
Full Text Available Abstract Background We observe two trends in bioinformatics: (i analyses are increasing in complexity, often requiring several applications to be run as a workflow; and (ii multiple CPU clusters and Grids are available to more scientists. The traditional solution to the problem of running workflows across multiple CPUs required programming, often in a scripting language such as perl. Programming places such solutions beyond the reach of many bioinformatics consumers. Results We present Wildfire, a graphical user interface for constructing and running workflows. Wildfire borrows user interface features from Jemboss and adds a drag-and-drop interface allowing the user to compose EMBOSS (and other programs into workflows. For execution, Wildfire uses GEL, the underlying workflow execution engine, which can exploit available parallelism on multiple CPU machines including Beowulf-class clusters and Grids. Conclusion Wildfire simplifies the tasks of constructing and executing bioinformatics workflows.
Black, Carolyn; Tesfaigzi, Yohannes; Bassein, Jed A; Miller, Lisa A
Understanding the effect of wildfire smoke exposure on human health represents a unique interdisciplinary challenge to the scientific community. Population health studies indicate that wildfire smoke is a risk to human health and increases the healthcare burden of smoke-impacted areas. However, wildfire smoke composition is complex and dynamic, making characterization and modeling difficult. Furthermore, current efforts to study the effect of wildfire smoke are limited by availability of air quality measures and inconsistent air quality reporting among researchers. To help address these issues, we conducted a substantive review of wildfire smoke effects on population health, wildfire smoke exposure in occupational health, and experimental wood smoke exposure. Our goal was to evaluate the current literature on wildfire smoke and highlight important gaps in research. In particular we emphasize long-term health effects of wildfire smoke, recovery following wildfire smoke exposure, and health consequences of exposure in children. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
Simonson, Amy E.; Behrens, Riley
In response to Hurricane Sandy, personnel from the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) deployed a temporary network of storm-tide sensors from Virginia to Maine. During the storm, real-time water levels were available from tide gages and rapid-deployment gages (RDGs). After the storm, USGS scientists retrieved the storm-tide sensors and RDGs and surveyed high-water marks. These data demonstrate that the timing of peak storm surge relative to astronomical tide was extremely important in southeastern New York. For example, along the south shores of New York City and western Suffolk County, the peak storm surge of 6–9 ft generally coincided with the astronomical high tide, which resulted in substantial coastal flooding. In the Peconic Estuary and northern Nassau County, however, the peak storm surge of 9 ft and nearly 12 ft, respectively, nearly coincided with normal low tide, which helped spare these communities from more severe coastal flooding.
La Peyre, M.K.; Gordon, J.
We compared nekton habitat value of submerged aquatic vegetation, flooded non-vegetated natural and man-made edge habitats in mesohaline interior marsh areas in southwest Louisiana using a 1-m 2 throw trap and 3-mm bag seine. When present, SAV habitats supported close to 4 times greater densities and higher species richness of nekton as compared to either natural or man-made edge habitats, which supported similar densities to one another. Three species of concern (bayou killifish, diamond killifish, chain pipefish) were targeted in the analysis, and two of the three were collected almost entirely in SAV habitat. During the course of the study, Hurricanes Ike and Gustav passed directly over the study sites in September 2008. Subsequent analyses indicated significant reductions in resident nekton density 1-mo post hurricanes, and only limited recovery 13-mo post-hurricane. Possible alteration of environmental characteristics such as scouring of SAV habitat, deposition of sediment over SAV, edge erosion and marsh loss, and extended high salinities may explain these lasting impacts. ?? 2011.
Full Text Available Numerical simulations of the storm tide that flooded the US Atlantic coastline during Hurricane Sandy (2012 are carried out using the National Weather Service (NWS Sea Lakes and Overland Surges from Hurricanes (SLOSH storm surge prediction model to quantify its ability to replicate the height, timing, evolution and extent of the water that was driven ashore by this large, destructive storm. Recent upgrades to the numerical model, including the incorporation of astronomical tides, are described and simulations with and without these upgrades are contrasted to assess their contributions to the increase in forecast accuracy. It is shown, through comprehensive verifications of SLOSH simulation results against peak water surface elevations measured at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA tide gauge stations, by storm surge sensors deployed and hundreds of high water marks collected by the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS, that the SLOSH-simulated water levels at 71% (89% of the data measurement locations have less than 20% (30% relative error. The RMS error between observed and modeled peak water levels is 0.47 m. In addition, the model’s extreme computational efficiency enables it to run large, automated ensembles of predictions in real-time to account for the high variability that can occur in tropical cyclone forecasts, thus furnishing a range of values for the predicted storm surge and inundation threat.
Dunlap, Eloise; Johnson, Bruce D; Morse, Edward
This paper analyzes illicit drug markets in New Orleans before and after Hurricane Katrina and access to drug markets following evacuation at many locations and in Houston. Among New Orleans arrestees pre-Katrina, rates of crack and heroin use and market participation was comparable to New York and higher than in other southern cities. Both cities have vigorous outdoor drug markets. Over 100 New Orleans evacuees provide rich accounts describing the illicit markets in New Orleans and elsewhere. The flooding of New Orleans disrupted the city's flourishing drug markets, both during and immediately after the storm. Drug supplies, though limited, were never completely unavailable. Subjects reported that alcohol or drugs were not being used in the Houston Astrodome, and it was a supportive environment. Outside the Astrodome, they were often approached by or could easily locate middlemen and drug sellers. Evacuees could typically access illegal drug markets wherever they went. This paper analyzes the impact of a major disaster upon users of illegal drugs and the illegal drug markets in New Orleans and among the diaspora of New Orleans evacuees following Hurricane Katrina. This analysis includes data from criminal justice sources that specify what the drug markets were like before this disaster occurred. This analysis also includes some comparison cities where no disaster occurred, but which help inform the similarities and differences in drug markets in other cities. The data presented also include an initial analysis of ethnographic interview data from over 100 New Orleans Evacuees recruited in New Orleans and Houston.
Ludwig, K. A.; Machlis, G. E.; Applegate, D.
This presentation will describe the history, mission, and current activities of the newly formed Department of the Interior (DOI) Strategic Sciences Group (SSG), with a focus on its response to Hurricane Sandy and lessons learned from using scenario building to support decision making. There have been several environmental crises of national significance in recent years, including Hurricane Katrina (2005), large-scale California wildfires (2007-2008), the Deepwater Horizon oil spill (2010), and Hurricane Sandy (2012). Such events are complex because of their impacts on the ecology, economy, and people of the affected locations. In these and other environmental disasters, the DOI has had significant responsibilities to protect people and resources and to engage in emergency response, recovery, and restoration efforts. In recognition of the increasingly critical role of strategic science in responding to such complex events, the DOI established the SSG by Secretarial Order in 2012. Its purpose is to provide the DOI with science-based assessments and interdisciplinary scenarios of environmental crises affecting Departmental resources; rapidly assemble interdisciplinary teams of scientists from government, academia, and non-governmental organizations to conduct such work; and provide results to DOI leadership as usable knowledge to support decision making. March 2013 was the SSG's first deployment since its formation. The SSG's charge was to support DOI's participation on the Hurricane Sandy Rebuilding Task Force by developing scenarios of Hurricane Sandy's environmental, economic, and social consequences in the New York/New Jersey area and potential interventions that could improve regional resilience to future major storms. Over the course of one week, the SSG Sandy team (Operational Group Sandy) identified 13 first-tier consequences and 17 interventions. The SSG briefed DOI leadership, Task Force representatives, and other policy makers in both Washington, DC and
Weigel, A. M.; Griffin, R.; Gallagher, D.
Storm surge has enough destructive power to damage buildings and infrastructure, erode beaches, and threaten human life across large geographic areas, hence posing the greatest threat of all the hurricane hazards. The United States Gulf of Mexico has proven vulnerable to hurricanes as it has been hit by some of the most destructive hurricanes on record. With projected rises in sea level and increases in hurricane activity, there is a need to better understand the associated risks for disaster mitigation, preparedness, and response. GIS has become a critical tool in enhancing disaster planning, risk assessment, and emergency response by communicating spatial information through a multi-layer approach. However, there is a need for a near real-time method of identifying areas with a high risk of being impacted by storm surge. Research was conducted alongside Baron, a private industry weather enterprise, to facilitate automated modeling and visualization of storm surge inundation and vulnerability on a near real-time basis. This research successfully automated current flood hazard mapping techniques using a GIS framework written in a Python programming environment, and displayed resulting data through an Application Program Interface (API). Data used for this methodology included high resolution topography, NOAA Probabilistic Surge model outputs parsed from Rich Site Summary (RSS) feeds, and the NOAA Census tract level Social Vulnerability Index (SoVI). The development process required extensive data processing and management to provide high resolution visualizations of potential flooding and population vulnerability in a timely manner. The accuracy of the developed methodology was assessed using Hurricane Isaac as a case study, which through a USGS and NOAA partnership, contained ample data for statistical analysis. This research successfully created a fully automated, near real-time method for mapping high resolution storm surge inundation and vulnerability for the
Stoeckel, Donald M.; Bushon, Rebecca N.; Demcheck, Dennis K.; Skrobialowski, Stanley C.; Kephart, Christopher M.; Bertke, Erin E.; Mailot, Brian E.; Mize, Scott V.; Fendick, Robert B.
The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS), in collaboration with the Louisiana Department of Environmental Quality, monitored bacteriological quality of water at 22 sites in and around Lake Pontchartrain, La., for three consecutive weeks beginning September 13, 2005, following hurricanes Katrina and Rita and the associated flooding. Samples were collected and analyzed by USGS personnel from the USGS Louisiana Water Science Center and the USGS Ohio Water Microbiology Laboratory. Fecal-indicator bacteria (Escherichia coli, enterococci, and fecal coliform) concentrations ranged from the detection limit to 36,000 colony-forming units per 100 milliliters. Data are presented in tabular form and as plots of data in the context of available historical data and water-quality standards and criteria for each site sampled. Quality-control data were reviewed to ensure that methods performed as expected in a mobile laboratory setting.
Full Text Available The increasing occurrence of natural disasters and their related damage have led to a growing demand for models that predict financial loss. Although considerable research on the financial losses related to natural disasters has found significant predictors, there has been a lack of comprehensive study that addresses the relationship among vulnerabilities, natural disasters, and the economic losses of individual buildings. This study identifies the vulnerability indicators for hurricanes to establish a metric to predict the related financial loss. We classify hurricane-prone areas by highlighting the spatial distribution of losses and vulnerabilities. This study used a Geographical Information System (GIS to combine and produce spatial data and a multiple regression method to establish a wind damage prediction model. As the dependent variable, we used the value of the Texas Windstorm Insurance Association (TWIA claim payout divided by the appraised values of the buildings to predict real economic loss. As independent variables, we selected a hurricane indicator and built environment vulnerability indicators. The model we developed can be used by government agencies and insurance companies to predict hurricane wind damage.
Chadwick D. Rittenhouse; Anna M. Pidgeon; Thomas P. Albright; Patrick D. Culbert; Murray K. Clayton; Curtis H. Flather; Chengquan Huang; Jeffrey G. Masek; Volker C. Radeloff
Global climate models predict increases in the frequency and intensity of extreme climatic events such as hurricanes, which may abruptly alter ecological processes in forests and thus affect avian diversity. Developing appropriate conservation measures necessitates identifying patterns of avifauna response to hurricanes. We sought to answer two questions: (1) does...
Ariel Lugo; J.L. Frangi
We studied the response of Prestoea montana (Sierra Palm, hereafter Palm) brakes and a Palm floodplain forest to hurricanes in the Luquillo Experimental Forest in Puerto Rico. Over a span of 78 years, 3 hurricanes passed over the study sites for which we have 64 years of measurements for Palm brakes and 20 years for the Palm floodplain forest. For each stand, species...
Muzekari, Louis H.; And Others
This paper reports the effects of Hurricane Hugo on mental health workers and indigenous community members. The response and perceptions of mental health staff from the South Carolina Department of Mental Health (Go Teams) from areas unaffected by the hurricane were compared and contrasted with those of a subsequent Hugo Outreach Support Team…
Scatena, F.N.; Larsen, Matthew C.
On 18 September 1989 the western part ofHurricane Hugo crossed eastern Puerto Rico and the Luquillo Experimental Forest (LEF). Storm-facing slopes on the northeastern part of the island that were within 15 km of the eye and received greater than 200 mm of rain were most affected by the storm. In the LEF and nearby area, recurrence intervals associated with Hurricane Hugo were 50 yr for wind velocity, 10 to 31 yr for stream discharge, and 5 yr for rainfall intensity. To compare the magnitudes of the six hurricanes to pass over PuertoRico since 1899, 3 indices were developed using the standardized values of the product of: the maximum sustained wind speed at San Juan squared and storm duration; the square of the product of the maximum sustained wind velocity at San Juan and the ratio of the distance between the hurricane eye and San Juan to the distance between the eye and percentage of average annual rainfall delivered by the storm. Based on these indices, HurricaneHugo was of moderate intensity. However, because of the path of Hurricane Hugo, only one of these six storms (the 1932 storm) caused more damage to the LEF than Hurricane Hugo. Hurricanes of Hugo's magnitude are estimated to pass over the LEF once every 50-60 yr, on average.
W. Wang; J.J. Qu; X. Hao; Y. Liu; J.A. Stanturf
This study developed a rapid assessment algorithm for post-hurricane forest damage estimation using moderate resolution imaging spectroradiometer (MODIS) measurements. The performance of five commonly used vegetation indices as post-hurricane forest damage indicators was investigated through statistical analysis. The Normalized Difference Infrared Index (NDII) was...
Coco, Joshua Christian
The purpose of the study was to investigate the strategies that university leaders implemented to improve retention of displaced students in the aftermaths of Hurricanes Katrina and Rita. The universities that participated in this study admitted displaced students after Hurricanes Katrina and Rita. This study utilized a qualitative…
Lambert, Simone F.; Lawson, Gerard
Professional counselors who provided services to those affected by Hurricanes Katrina and Rita completed the K6+ (screen for severe mental illness), the Posttraumatic Growth Inventory, and the Professional Quality of Life Scale. Results indicated that participants who survived the hurricanes had higher levels of posttraumatic growth than…
There is a dearth of studies on how college students prepare for the threat of natural disasters. This study surveyed college students' preferences in mass media use prior to an approaching hurricane. The convenience sample (n = 76) were from a university located in the hurricane-prone area of the central Gulf of Mexico coast. Interestingly,…
extratropical cyclone by months in the Pacific basin. Most of the storms occur from October through March...hurricane force extratropical cyclone. Starting from left to right; the first column is the storm name, second column is the year, month, day, hour (UTC...2000 through 2007 illustrates that the number of hurricane-force extratropical cyclones is quite significant: approximately 500 storms , nearly evenly
National Child Traumatic Stress Network, 2013
Being in a hurricane can be very frightening, and the days, weeks, and months following the storm can be very stressful. Most families recover over time, especially with the support of relatives, friends, and their community. But different families may have different experiences during and after a hurricane, and how long it takes them to recover…
Lozano, Olga M; Salis, Michele; Ager, Alan A; Arca, Bachisio; Alcasena, Fermin J; Monteiro, Antonio T; Finney, Mark A; Del Giudice, Liliana; Scoccimarro, Enrico; Spano, Donatella
We used simulation modeling to assess potential climate change impacts on wildfire exposure in Italy and Corsica (France). Weather data were obtained from a regional climate model for the period 1981-2070 using the IPCC A1B emissions scenario. Wildfire simulations were performed with the minimum travel time fire spread algorithm using predicted fuel moisture, wind speed, and wind direction to simulate expected changes in weather for three climatic periods (1981-2010, 2011-2040, and 2041-2070). Overall, the wildfire simulations showed very slight changes in flame length, while other outputs such as burn probability and fire size increased significantly in the second future period (2041-2070), especially in the southern portion of the study area. The projected changes fuel moisture could result in a lengthening of the fire season for the entire study area. This work represents the first application in Europe of a methodology based on high resolution (250 m) landscape wildfire modeling to assess potential impacts of climate changes on wildfire exposure at a national scale. The findings can provide information and support in wildfire management planning and fire risk mitigation activities. © 2016 Society for Risk Analysis.
Salis, Michele; Ager, Alan A; Alcasena, Fermin J; Arca, Bachisio; Finney, Mark A; Pellizzaro, Grazia; Spano, Donatella
In this paper, we applied landscape scale wildfire simulation modeling to explore the spatiotemporal patterns of wildfire likelihood and intensity in the island of Sardinia (Italy). We also performed wildfire exposure analysis for selected highly valued resources on the island to identify areas characterized by high risk. We observed substantial variation in burn probability, fire size, and flame length among time periods within the fire season, which starts in early June and ends in late September. Peak burn probability and flame length were observed in late July. We found that patterns of wildfire likelihood and intensity were mainly related to spatiotemporal variation in ignition locations, fuel moisture, and wind vectors. Our modeling approach allowed consideration of historical patterns of winds, ignition locations, and live and dead fuel moisture on fire exposure factors. The methodology proposed can be useful for analyzing potential wildfire risk and effects at landscape scale, evaluating historical changes and future trends in wildfire exposure, as well as for addressing and informing fuel management and risk mitigation issues.
Project WET Foundation, 2009
Now available as a Download! This valuable resource helps educators teach students about both the risks and benefits of flooding through a series of engaging, hands-on activities. Acknowledging the different roles that floods play in both natural and urban communities, the book helps young people gain a global understanding of this common--and…
Richardson, L.A.; Champ, P.A.; Loomis, J.B.
There is a growing concern that human health impacts from exposure to wildfire smoke are ignored in estimates of monetized damages from wildfires. Current research highlights the need for better data collection and analysis of these impacts. Using unique primary data, this paper quantifies the economic cost of health effects from the largest wildfire in Los Angeles County's modern history. A cost of illness estimate is $9.50 per exposed person per day. However, theory and empirical research consistently find that this measure largely underestimates the true economic cost of health effects from exposure to a pollutant in that it ignores the cost of defensive actions taken as well as disutility. For the first time, the defensive behavior method is applied to calculate the willingness to pay for a reduction in one wildfire smoke induced symptom day, which is estimated to be $84.42 per exposed person per day. ?? 2011.
Hall, Timothy M.; Sobel, Adam H.
Hurricane Sandy's track crossed the New Jersey coastline at an angle closer to perpendicular than any previous hurricane in the historic record, one of the factors contributing to recordsetting peak-water levels in parts of New Jersey and New York. To estimate the occurrence rate of Sandy-like tracks, we use a stochastic model built on historical hurricane data from the entire North Atlantic to generate a large sample of synthetic hurricanes. From this synthetic set we calculate that under long-term average climate conditions, a hurricane of Sandy's intensity or greater (category 1+) makes NJ landfall at an angle at least as close to perpendicular as Sandy's at an average annual rate of 0.0014 yr-1 (95% confidence range 0.0007 to 0.0023); i.e., a return period of 714 years (95% confidence range 435 to 1429).
Safe operating procedures developed by TransAlta Utilities for dealing with flooding, resulting from upstream dam failures or extreme rainfalls, were presented. Several operating curves developed by Monenco AGRA were described, among them the No Overtopping Curve (NOC), the Safe Filling Curve (SFC), the No Spill Curve (NSC) and the Guaranteed Fill Curve (GFC). The concept of an operational comfort zone was developed and defined. A flood action plan for all operating staff was created as a guide in case of a flooding incident. Staging of a flood action plan workshop was described. Dam break scenarios pertinent to the Bow River were developed for subsequent incorporation into a Flood Action Plan Manual. Evaluation of the technical presentations made during workshops were found them to have been effective in providing operating staff with a better understanding of the procedures that they would perform in an emergency. 8 figs
Zhang, K.; Liu, H.; Li, Y.
Barrier islands and associated bays along the Atlantic and Gulf Coasts are a favorite place for both living and visiting. Many of them are vulnerable to storm surge flooding because of low elevations and constantly being subjected to the impacts of storms. The population increase and urban development along the barrier coast have altered the shoreline configuration, resulting in a dramatic change in the coastal flooding pattern in some areas. Here we present such a case based on numerical simulations of storm surge flooding caused by the1926 hurricane in the densely populated area surrounding Biscayne Bay in Miami, Florida. The construction of harbor and navigation channels, and the development of real estate and the roads connecting islands along Biscayne Bay have changed the geometry of Biscayne Bay since 1910s. Storm surge simulations show that the Port of Miami and Dodge Island constructed by human after 1950 play an important role in changing storm surge inundation pattern along Biscayne Bay. Dodge Island enhances storm surge and increases inundation in the area south of the island, especially at the mouth of Miami River (Downtown of Miami), and reduces storm surge flooding in the area north of the island, especially in Miami Beach. If the Hurricane Miami of 1926 happened today, the flooding area would be reduced by 55% and 20% in the Miami Beach and North Miami areas, respectively. Consequently, it would prevent 400 million of property and 10 thousand people from surge flooding according to 2010 U.S census and 2007 property tax data. Meanwhile, storm water would penetrate further inland south of Dodge Island and increase the flooding area by 25% in the Miami River and Downtown Miami areas. As a result, 200 million of property and five thousand people would be impacted by storm surge.
Bell, J. R.; Schultz, L. A.; Molthan, A.; Kirschbaum, D.; Roman, M.; Yun, S. H.; Meyer, F. J.; Hogenson, K.; Gens, R.; Goodman, H. M.; Owen, S. E.; Lou, Y.; Amini, R.; Glasscoe, M. T.; Brentzel, K. W.; Stefanov, W. L.; Green, D. S.; Murray, J. J.; Seepersad, J.; Struve, J. C.; Thompson, V.
The 2017 Atlantic hurricane season included a series of storms that impacted the United States, and the Caribbean breaking a 12-year drought of landfalls in the mainland United States (Harvey and Irma), with additional impacts from the combination of Irma and Maria felt in the Caribbean. These storms caused widespread devastation resulting in a significant need to support federal partners in response to these destructive weather events. The NASA Earth Science Disasters Program provided support to federal partners including the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and the National Guard Bureau (NGB) by leveraging remote sensing and other expertise through NASA Centers and partners in academia throughout the country. The NASA Earth Science Disasters Program leveraged NASA mission products from the GPM mission to monitor cyclone intensity, assist with cyclone center tracking, and quantifying precipitation. Multispectral imagery from the NASA-NOAA Suomi-NPP mission and the VIIRS Day-Night Band proved useful for monitoring power outages and recovery. Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR) data from the Copernicus Sentinel-1 satellites operated by the European Space Agency were used to create flood inundation and damage assessment maps that were useful for damage density mapping. Using additional datasets made available through the USGS Hazards Data Distribution System and the activation of the International Charter: Space and Major Disasters, the NASA Earth Science Disasters Program created additional flood products from optical and radar remote sensing platforms, along with PI-led efforts to derive products from other international partner assets such as the COSMO-SkyMed system. Given the significant flooding impacts from Harvey in the Houston area, NASA provided airborne L-band SAR collections from the UAVSAR system which captured the daily evolution of record flooding, helping to guide response and mitigation decisions for critical infrastructure and public safety. We
Borsa, A. A.; Mencin, D.; van Dam, T. M.
Hurricane Harvey was the first major hurricane to impact the USA in over a decade, making landfall southwest of Houston, TX on August 26, 2017. Although Harvey was downgraded to a tropical storm shortly after landfall, it dropped a record amount of rain and was responsible for epic flooding across much of southeast Texas. While precipitation from a large storm like Harvey can be estimated from in-situ rain gages and Doppler radar, the accompanying surface water changes that lead to flooding are imperfectly observed due to the limited coverage of existing stream and lake level gages and because floodwaters inundate areas that are typically unmonitored. Earth's response to changes in surface loading provides an opportunity to observe the local hydrological response to Hurricane Harvey, specifically the dramatic changes in water storage coincident with and following the storm. Continuous GPS stations in southeastern Texas observed an average drop in land surface elevations of 1.8 cm following Harvey's landfall, followed by a gradual recovery to pre-storm levels over the following month. We interpret this surface motion as Earth's elastic response to the weight of cumulative rainfall during the storm, followed by rebound as that weight was removed by runoff and evapotranspiration (ET). Using observations of surface displacements from GPS stations in the HoustonNET and Plate Boundary Observatory networks, we model the daily water storage changes across Texas and Louisiana associated with Harvey. Because Harvey's barometric pressure low caused surface uplift at the cm level which temporarily obscured the subsidence signal due to precipitation, we model and remove the effect of atmospheric loading from the GPS data prior to our analysis. We also consider the effect on GPS position time series of non-tidal ocean loading due to the hurricane storm surge, which at the coast was an order of magnitude larger than loads due to precipitation alone. Finally, we use our results to
Xu, Kehui; Mickey, Rangley C.; Chen, Qin; Harris, Courtney K.; Hetland, Robert D.; Hu, Kelin; Wang, Jiaze
Hurricanes can greatly modify the sedimentary record, but our coastal scientific community has rather limited capability to predict hurricane-induced sediment deposition. A three-dimensional sediment transport model was developed in the Regional Ocean Modeling System (ROMS) to study seabed erosion and deposition on the Louisiana shelf in response to Hurricanes Katrina and Rita in the year 2005. Sensitivity tests were performed on both erosional and depositional processes for a wide range of erosional rates and settling velocities, and uncertainty analysis was done on critical shear stresses using the polynomial chaos approximation method. A total of 22 model runs were performed in sensitivity and uncertainty tests. Estimated maximum erosional depths were sensitive to the inputs, but horizontal erosional patterns seemed to be controlled mainly by hurricane tracks, wave-current combined shear stresses, seabed grain sizes, and shelf bathymetry. During the passage of two hurricanes, local resuspension and deposition dominated the sediment transport mechanisms. Hurricane Katrina followed a shelf-perpendicular track before making landfall and its energy dissipated rapidly within about 48 h along the eastern Louisiana coast. In contrast, Hurricane Rita followed a more shelf-oblique track and disturbed the seabed extensively during its 84-h passage from the Alabama-Mississippi border to the Louisiana-Texas border. Conditions to either side of Hurricane Rita's storm track differed substantially, with the region to the east having stronger winds, taller waves and thus deeper erosions. This study indicated that major hurricanes can disturb the shelf at centimeter to meter levels. Each of these two hurricanes suspended seabed sediment mass that far exceeded the annual sediment inputs from the Mississippi and Atchafalaya Rivers, but the net transport from shelves to estuaries is yet to be determined. Future studies should focus on the modeling of sediment exchange between
Huang, Y.; Weisberg, R.H.; Zheng, L.; Zijlema, M.
The effects of wind input parameterizations on wave estimations under hurricane conditions are examined using the unstructured grid, third-generation wave model, Simulating WAves Nearshore (SWAN). Experiments using Hurricane Ike wind forcing, which impacted the Gulf of Mexico in 2008, illustrate
Sebastian, A.G.; Lendering, K.T.; Kothuis, B.L.M.; Brand, A.D.; Jonkman, S.N.; van Gelder, P.H.A.J.M.; Kolen, B.; Comes, M.; Lhermitte, S.L.M.; Meesters, K.J.M.G.; van de Walle, B.A.; Ebrahimi Fard, A.; Cunningham, S.; Khakzad Rostami, N.; Nespeca, V.
On August 25, 2017, Hurricane Harvey made landfall near Rockport, Texas as a Category 4 hurricane with maximum sustained winds of approximately 200 km/hour. Harvey caused severe damages in coastal Texas due to extreme winds and storm surge, but will go down in history for record-setting rainfall
A.D. Jayakaran; T.M. Williams; H. Ssegane; D.M. Amatya; B. Song; C.C. Trettin
Hurricanes are infrequent but influential disruptors of ecosystem processes in the southeastern Atlantic and Gulf coasts. Every southeastern forested wetland has the potential to be struck by a tropical cyclone. We examined the impact of Hurricane Hugo on two paired coastal South Carolina watersheds in terms of streamflow and vegetation dynamics, both before and after...
The Hurricane Imaging Radiometer (HIRAD) is an airborne passive microwave radiometer designed to provide high resolution, wide swath imagery of surface wind speed in tropical cyclones from a low profile planar antenna with no mechanical scanning. Wind speed and rain rate images from HIRAD's first field campaign (GRIP, 2010) are presented here followed, by a discussion on the performance of the newly installed thermal control system during the 2012 HS3 campaign. The paper ends with a discussion on the next generation dual polarization HIRAD antenna (already designed) for a future system capable of measuring wind direction as well as wind speed.
Natural hazards distress the global economy by disrupting the interconnected supply chain networks. Manufacturing companies have created cost-efficient supply chains by reducing inventories, streamlining logistics and limiting the number of suppliers. As a result, today's supply chains are profoundly susceptible to systemic risks. In Thailand, for example, the GDP growth rate declined by 76 % in 2011 due to prolonged flooding. Thailand incurred economic damage including the loss of USD 46.5 billion, approximately 70% of which was caused by major supply chain disruptions in the manufacturing sector. Similar problems occurred after the Great East Japan Earthquake and Tsunami in 2011, the Mississippi River floods and droughts during 2011 - 2013, and Hurricane Sandy in 2012. This study proposes a methodology for modeling supply chain disruptions using a Bayesian network analysis (BNA) to estimate expected values of countermeasures of floods, such as inventory management, supplier management and hard infrastructure management. We first performed a spatio-temporal correlation analysis between floods and extreme precipitation data for the last 100 years at a global scale. Then we used a BNA to create synthetic networks that include variables associated with the magnitude and duration of floods, major components of supply chains and market demands. We also included decision variables of countermeasures that would mitigate potential losses caused by supply chain disruptions. Finally, we conducted a cost-benefit analysis by estimating the expected values of these potential countermeasures while conducting a sensitivity analysis. The methodology was applied to supply chain disruptions caused by the 2011 Thailand floods. Our study demonstrates desirable typical data requirements for the analysis, such as anonymized supplier network data (i.e. critical dependencies, vulnerability information of suppliers) and sourcing data(i.e. locations of suppliers, and production rates and
George E. Dzyacky
The Flooding Predictor™ is a patented advanced control technology proven in research at the Separations Research Program, University of Texas at Austin, to increase distillation column throughput by over 6%, while also increasing energy efficiency by 10%. The research was conducted under a U. S. Department of Energy Cooperative Agreement awarded to George Dzyacky of 2ndpoint, LLC. The Flooding Predictor™ works by detecting the incipient flood point and controlling the column closer to its actual hydraulic limit than historical practices have allowed. Further, the technology uses existing column instrumentation, meaning no additional refining infrastructure is required. Refiners often push distillation columns to maximize throughput, improve separation, or simply to achieve day-to-day optimization. Attempting to achieve such operating objectives is a tricky undertaking that can result in flooding. Operators and advanced control strategies alike rely on the conventional use of delta-pressure instrumentation to approximate the column’s approach to flood. But column delta-pressure is more an inference of the column’s approach to flood than it is an actual measurement of it. As a consequence, delta pressure limits are established conservatively in order to operate in a regime where the column is never expected to flood. As a result, there is much “left on the table” when operating in such a regime, i.e. the capacity difference between controlling the column to an upper delta-pressure limit and controlling it to the actual hydraulic limit. The Flooding Predictor™, an innovative pattern recognition technology, controls columns at their actual hydraulic limit, which research shows leads to a throughput increase of over 6%. Controlling closer to the hydraulic limit also permits operation in a sweet spot of increased energy-efficiency. In this region of increased column loading, the Flooding Predictor is able to exploit the benefits of higher liquid
de Vries, Daniel H
After major flooding associated with Hurricane Floyd (1999) in North Carolina, mitigation managers seized upon the "window of opportunity" to woo residents to accept residential buyout offers despite sizable community resistance. I present a theoretical explanation of how post-crisis periods turn into "opportunities" based on a temporal referential theory that complements alternative explanations based on temporal coincidence, panarchy, and shock-doctrine theories. Results from fieldwork conducted from 2002 to 2004 illustrate how several temporal influences compromised collective calibration of "normalcy" in local cultural models, leading to an especially heightened vulnerability to collective surprise. Four factors particularly influenced this temporal vulnerability: 1) epistemological uncertainty of floodplain dynamics due to colonization; 2) cultural practices that maintained a casual amnesia; 3) meaning attributed to stochastic timing of floods; and 4) competitive impact of referential flood baseline attractors.
El Hassan, A.; Fares, A.; Risch, E.
Rain resulting from Hurricane Harvey stated to spread into Harris County late in August 25 and continued until August 31 2017. This high intensity rainfall caused catastrophic flooding across the Greater Houston Area and south Texas. The objectives of this study are to use the USACE Gridded Surface Subsurface Hydrologic Analysis model (GSSHA) to: i) simulate the hydrology and hydraulics of Cypress Creek watershed and quantify the impact of hurricane Harvey on it; and ii) test potential mitigation measures, e.g., construction of a third surface reservoir on the flooding and hydrology of this watershed. Cypress Creek watershed area is 733 km2. Simulations were conducted using precipitation from two sources a) the Multisensory Precipitation Estimator radar products (MPE) and Multi-Radar Multi-Sensor (MRMS) system. Streamflow was downloaded from the USGS gauge at the outlet of the watershed. The models performance using both precipitation data was very reasonable. The construction of an 8 m high embankment at the south central part of the watershed resulted in over 22% reduction of the peak flow of the stream and also reduction of the depth of inundation across the east part of the watershed. These and other mitigation scenarios will be further discussed in details during the presentation.
Skofronick Jackson, G.; Petersen, W. A.; Huffman, G. J.; Kirschbaum, D.; Wolff, D. B.; Tan, J.; Zavodsky, B.
The Global Precipitation Measurement (GPM) mission collected unique, near real time 3-D satellite-based views of hurricanes in 2017 together with estimated precipitation accumulation using merged satellite data for scientific studies and societal applications. Central to GPM is the NASA-JAXA GPM Core Observatory (CO). The GPM-CO carries an advanced dual-frequency precipitation radar (DPR) and a well-calibrated, multi-frequency passive microwave radiometer that together serve as an on orbit reference for precipitation measurements made by the international GPM satellite constellation. GPM-CO overpasses of major Hurricanes such as Harvey, Irma, Maria, and Ophelia revealed intense convective structures in DPR radar reflectivity together with deep ice-phase microphysics in both the eyewalls and outer rain bands. Of considerable scientific interest, and yet to be determined, will be DPR-diagnosed characteristics of the rain drop size distribution as a function of convective structure, intensity and microphysics. The GPM-CO active/passive suite also provided important decision support information. For example, the National Hurricane Center used GPM-CO observations as a tool to inform track and intensity estimates in their forecast briefings. Near-real-time rainfall accumulation from the Integrated Multi-satellitE Retrievals for GPM (IMERG) was also provided via the NASA SPoRT team to Puerto Rico following Hurricane Maria when ground-based radar systems on the island failed. Comparisons between IMERG, NOAA Multi-Radar Multi-Sensor data, and rain gauge rainfall accumulations near Houston, Texas during Hurricane Harvey revealed spatial biases between ground and IMERG satellite estimates, and a general underestimation of IMERG rain accumulations associated with infrared observations, collectively illustrating the difficulty of measuring rainfall in hurricanes.GPM data continue to advance scientific research on tropical cyclone intensification and structure, and contribute to
Heath, J. T.; Chafer, C. J.; van Ogtrop, F. F.; Bishop, T. F. A.
Wildfire is a recurring event which has been acknowledged by the literature to impact the hydrological cycle of a catchment. Hence, wildfire may have a significant impact on water yield levels within a catchment. In Australia, studies of the effect of fire on water yield have been limited to obligate seeder vegetation communities. These communities regenerate from seed banks in the ground or within woody fruits and are generally activated by fire. In contrast, the Sydney Basin is dominated by obligate resprouter communities. These communities regenerate from fire resistant buds found on the plant and are generally found in regions where wildfire is a regular occurrence. The 2001/2002 wildfires in the Sydney Basin provided an opportunity to investigate the impacts of wildfire on water yield in a number of catchments dominated by obligate resprouting communities. The overall aim of this study was to investigate whether there was a difference in water yield post-wildfire. Four burnt subcatchments and 3 control subcatchments were assessed. A general additive model was calibrated using pre-wildfire data and then used to predict post-wildfire water yield using post-wildfire data. The model errors were analysed and it was found that the errors for all subcatchments showed similar trends for the post-wildfire period. This finding demonstrates that wildfires within the Sydney Basin have no significant medium-term impact on water yield.
Demir, I.; Krajewski, W. F.; Goska, R.; Mantilla, R.; Weber, L. J.; Young, N.
The Iowa Flood Information System (IFIS) is a web-based platform developed by the Iowa Flood Center (IFC) to provide access to flood inundation maps, real-time flood conditions, flood forecasts both short-term and seasonal, flood-related data, information and interactive visualizations for communities in Iowa. The key element of the system's architecture is the notion of community. Locations of the communities, those near streams and rivers, define basin boundaries. The IFIS provides community-centric watershed and river characteristics, weather (rainfall) conditions, and streamflow data and visualization tools. Interactive interfaces allow access to inundation maps for different stage and return period values, and flooding scenarios with contributions from multiple rivers. Real-time and historical data of water levels, gauge heights, and rainfall conditions are available in the IFIS by streaming data from automated IFC bridge sensors, USGS stream gauges, NEXRAD radars, and NWS forecasts. Simple 2D and 3D interactive visualizations in the IFIS make the data more understandable to general public. Users are able to filter data sources for their communities and selected rivers. The data and information on IFIS is also accessible through web services and mobile applications. The IFIS is optimized for various browsers and screen sizes to provide access through multiple platforms including tablets and mobile devices. The IFIS includes a rainfall-runoff forecast model to provide a five-day flood risk estimate for around 500 communities in Iowa. Multiple view modes in the IFIS accommodate different user types from general public to researchers and decision makers by providing different level of tools and details. River view mode allows users to visualize data from multiple IFC bridge sensors and USGS stream gauges to follow flooding condition along a river. The IFIS will help communities make better-informed decisions on the occurrence of floods, and will alert communities
Wang, Y.; Ramaswamy, V.; Saleh, F.
Barnegat Bay located on the east coast of New Jersey, United States and is separated from the Atlantic Ocean by the narrow Barnegat Peninsula which acts as a barrier island. The bay is fed by several rivers which empty through small estuaries along the inner shore. In terms of vulnerability from flooding, the Barnegat Peninsula is under the influence of both coastal storm surge and riverine flooding. Barnegat Bay was hit by Hurricane Sandy causing flood damages with extensive cross-island flow at many streets perpendicular to the shoreline. The objective of this work is to identify and quantify the sources of flooding using a two dimensional inland hydrodynamic model. The hydrodynamic model was forced by three observed coastal boundary conditions, and one hydrologic boundary condition from United States Geological Survey (USGS). The model reliability was evaluated with both FEMA spatial flooding extend and USGS High water marks. Simulated flooding extent showed good agreement with the reanalysis spatial inundation extents. Results offered important perspectives on the flow of the water into the bay, the velocity and the depth of the inundated areas. Using such information can enable emergency managers and decision makers identify evacuation and deploy flood defenses.
Nghiem, S. V.; Nguyen, D. T.
In 2017, typhoons and hurricanes have inflicted catastrophic flooding across extensive regions in many countries on several continents, including Asia and North America. The U.S. Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) requested urgent support for flood mapping and monitoring in an emergency response to the devastating flood situation. An innovative satellite remote sensing method, called the Depolarization Reduction Algorithm for Global Observations of inundatioN (DRAGON), has been developed and implemented for use with Sentinel synthetic aperture radar (SAR) satellite data at a resolution of 10 meters to identify, map, and monitor inundation including pre-existing water bodies and newly flooded areas. Because Sentinel SAR operates at C-band microwave frequency, it can be used for flood mapping regardless of could cover conditions typically associated with storms, and thus can provide immediate results without the need to wait for the clouds to clear out. In Southeast Asia, Typhoon Doksuri caused significant flooding across extensive regions in Vietnam and other countries in September 2017. Figure 1 presents the flood mapping result over a region around Hà Tĩnh (north central coast of Vietnam) showing flood inundated areas (in yellow) on 16 September 2017 together with pre-existing surface water (in blue) on 4 September 2017. This is just one example selected from a larger flood map covering an extensive region of about 250 km x 680 km all along the central coast of Vietnam.
Thomas A. Bianchette
Full Text Available The wetlands of the southern Louisiana coast are disappearing due to a host of environmental stressors. Thus, it is imperative to analyze the spatial and temporal variability of wetland vertical accretion rates. A key question in accretion concerns the role of landfalling hurricanes as a land-building agent, due to their propensity to deposit significant volumes of inorganic sediments. Since 1996, thousands of accretion measurements have been made at 390 sites across coastal Louisiana as a result of a regional monitoring network, called the Coastal Reference Monitoring System (CRMS. We utilized this dataset to analyze the spatial and temporal patterns of accretion by mapping rates during time periods before, around, and after the landfall of Hurricane Isaac (2012. This analysis is vital for quantifying the role of hurricanes as a land-building agent and for understanding the main mechanism causing heightened wetland accretion. The results show that accretion rates averaged about 2.89 cm/year from stations sampled before Isaac, 4.04 cm/year during the period encompassing Isaac, and 2.38 cm/year from sites established and sampled after Isaac. Accretion rates attributable to Isaac’s effects were therefore 40% and 70% greater than before and after the event, respectively, indicating the event’s importance toward coastal land-building. Accretion associated with Isaac was highest at sites located 70 kilometers from the storm track, particularly those near the Mississippi River and its adjacent distributaries and lakes. This spatial pattern of elevated accretion rates indicates that freshwater flooding from fluvial channels, rather than storm surge from the sea per se, is the main mechanism responsible for increased wetland accretion. This significance of riverine flooding has implications toward future coastal restoration policies and practices.
Bedient, P. B.
Harvey was the largest rainfall and most damaging flood event in US history. By all measures the widespread impact was a devastating blow to all of Houston and surrounding areas. It dropped between 36 and 52 inches along the Texas coast over 5 days, exceeding all previous rainfall records, with up to 20 inches in a day. However, two earlier events from 2015 and 2016 also brought widespread flooding to many parts of Houston, especially concentrated in a few watersheds. Most bayous during Harvey were over bank by as much as 10 ft, and flooded an estimated 136000 homes in Harris county alone, greatly exceeding the massive TS Allison impact of 2001. While the area deals with a significant recovery effort, there is a massive call to action on the part of politicians, governmental agencies, and those affected by this event. There is need for a better statistical basis of rainfalls and floodplain mapping in Houston. Development patterns and density have come into question, as homes have been either built in 100 yr floodplains or taken into those floodplains over time. Estimates say > 47 % of homes flooded in TS Allison were outside the floodplain. Many homes were built behind Addicks/Barker reservoirs that protect downtown, many with no knowledge that they were in harms way (over 8000 were flooded there alone), and flooded as water reached record setting levels. New technologies have allowed the measurement and prediction of floods to make great strides since the mid 1990s, (Radar, LIDAR, GIS, hydrologic models, floodplain updates) and the Houston area has benefited from these efforts. While the plan going forward is daunting, there are a number of positive steps that are occurring and should lead to more resiliency. There needs to be policy changes on storage and detention requirements, green space & infrastructure improvements, and perhaps a third regional reservoir above Addicks. Also there is a renewed interest in flood warning systems to better inform the public
Kunz, Michael; Mühr, Bernhard; Schröter, Kai; Kunz-Plapp, Tina; Daniell, James; Khazai, Bijan; Wenzel, Friedemann; Vannieuwenhuyse, Marjorie; Comes, Tina; Münzberg, Thomas; Elmer, Florian; Fohringer, Joachim; Lucas, Christian; Trieselmann, Werner; Zschau, Jochen
Hurricane Sandy was the last tropical cyclone of the 2012 Northern Atlantic Hurricane season that made landfall. It moved on an unusual track from the Caribbean to the East Coast of the United States from 24 to 30 October as a Category 1 and 2 Hurricane according to the Saffir-Simpson Scale. Along its path, the severe storm event caused widespread damage including almost 200 fatalities. In the early hours of 30 October, Sandy made landfall near Atlantic City, N.J. Sandy was an extraordinary event due to its multihazard nature and several cascading effects in the aftermath. From the hydro-meteorological perspective, most unusual was the very large spatial extent of up to 1,700 km. High wind speeds were associated with record breaking storm surges at the U.S. Mid- Atlantic and New England Coast during high (astronomical) tide, leading to widespread flooding. Though Sandy was not the most severe storm event in terms of wind speed and precipitation, the impact in the U.S. was enormous with total damage estimates of up to 90 billion US (own estimate from Dec. 2012). Although much better data emerge weeks after such an event, the Forensic Disaster Analysis (FDA) Task Force of the Center for Disaster Management and Risk Reduction Technology (CEDIM) made an effort to obtain a comprehensive and holistic overview of the causes, hazardous effects and consequences associated with Sandy immediately after landfall at the U.S. coast on 30 October 2012. This was done in an interdisciplinary way by collecting and compiling scattered and distributed information from available databases and sources via the Internet, by applying own methodologies and models for near-real time analyses developed in recent years, and by expert knowledge. This contribution gives an overview about the CEDIM-FDA analyses' results. It describes the situation that led to the extraordinary event, highlights the interaction of the tropical cyclone with other hydro-meteorological events, and examines the
Following a severe wildfire season in 2003, and several subsequent damaging debris flow and flood events, the British Columbia Forest Service developed a procedure for analysing risks to public safety and infrastructure from such events. At the same time, the Forest Service undertook a research program to determine the extent of post-wildfire hazards, and examine the hydrologic and geomorphic processes contributing to the hazards. The risk analysis procedure follows the Canadian Standards Association decision-making framework for risk management (which in turn is based on international standards). This has several steps: identification of risk, risk analysis and estimation, evaluation of risk tolerability, developing control or mitigation strategies, and acting on these strategies. The Forest Service procedure deals only with the first two steps. The results are passed on to authorities such as the Provincial Emergency Program and local government, who are responsible for evaluating risks, warning residents, and applying mitigation strategies if appropriate. The objective of the procedure is to identify and analyse risks to public safety and infrastructure. The procedure is loosely based on the BAER (burned area emergency response) program in the USA, with some important differences. Our procedure focuses on identifying risks and warning affected parties, not on mitigation activities such as broadcast erosion control measures. Partly this is due to limited staff and financial resources. Also, our procedure is not multi-agency, but is limited to wildfires on provincial forest land; in British Columbia about 95% of forest land is in the publicly-owned provincial forest. Each fire season, wildfires are screened by size and proximity to values at risk such as populated areas. For selected fires, when the fire is largely contained, the procedure begins with an aerial reconnaissance of the fire, and photography with a hand-held camera, which can be used to make a
Harp, Edwin L.; Hagaman, Kirk W.; Held, Matthew D.; McKenna, Jonathan P.
Intense rainfall from Hurricane Mitch from October 27-31, 1998, exceeded 900 mm in places in Honduras and triggered in excess of 500,000 landslides throughout the country. Landslides damaged an estimated 70% of the road network in Honduras based on estimates by the U. S Army Corps of Engineers. Numbers of fatalities due to landslides are not accurately known due to the fact that numerous small villages throughout Honduras lost residents to landslides without an official count being recorded. A conservative estimate would place the number at near 1,000. Debris flows accounted for over 95% of the landslides and ranged in thickness from 1 to 15 m. Flow path lengths of these failures ranged from several meters to 7.5 km. The highest concentrations of debris flows occurred in the mountains near the town of Choluteca where over 900 mm of rain fell in three days. Although landslides other than debris flows were few, several deep-seated landslides in the city of Tegucigalpa severely impacted people and property. The 'El Berrinche' rotational slump/earth flow of approximately six million cubic meters volume destroyed the entire neighborhood of Colonia Soto near the center of the city. The landslide also dammed the Rio Choluteca and created a lagoon behind the landslide dam, which immediately posed a health problem for the city, because raw, untreated sewage was emptying into the Rio Choluteca. Several areas of highly concentrated landslides have been responsible for much of the flooding problem as well. Huge sediment influxes from landslide source areas near La Ceiba, La Libertad, Marale, and in several arms of El Cajon Reservoir have reduced stream capacities to practically nothing and have exacerbated flooding conditions in even the moderate rainfall seasons since Hurricane Mitch. The ongoing hazard to communities from landslides triggered during Hurricane Mitch are being analyzed using aerial photography taken by the U.S. Air Force and by supplemental photography taken
Yildirim, E.; Sermet, M. Y.; Demir, I.
Importance of decision support systems for flood emergency response and loss estimation increases with its social and economic impacts. To estimate the damage of the flood, there are several software systems available to researchers and decision makers. HAZUS-MH is one of the most widely used desktop program, developed by FEMA (Federal Emergency Management Agency), to estimate economic loss and social impacts of disasters such as earthquake, hurricane and flooding (riverine and coastal). HAZUS used loss estimation methodology and implements through geographic information system (GIS). HAZUS contains structural, demographic, and vehicle information across United States. Thus, it allows decision makers to understand and predict possible casualties and damage of the floods by running flood simulations through GIS application. However, it doesn't represent real time conditions because of using static data. To close this gap, an overview of a web-based infrastructure coupling HAZUS and real time data provided by IFIS (Iowa Flood Information System) is presented by this research. IFIS is developed by the Iowa Flood Center, and a one-stop web-platform to access community-based flood conditions, forecasts, visualizations, inundation maps and flood-related data, information, and applications. Large volume of real-time observational data from a variety of sensors and remote sensing resources (radars, rain gauges, stream sensors, etc.) and flood inundation models are staged on a user-friendly maps environment that is accessible to the general public. Providing cross sectional analyses between HAZUS-MH and IFIS datasets, emergency managers are able to evaluate flood damage during flood events easier and more accessible in real time conditions. With matching data from HAZUS-MH census tract layer and IFC gauges, economical effects of flooding can be observed and evaluated by decision makers. The system will also provide visualization of the data by using augmented reality for
Du, Weiwei; FitzGerald, Gerard Joseph; Clark, Michele; Hou, Xiang-Yu
Floods are the most common hazard to cause disasters and have led to extensive morbidity and mortality throughout the world. The impact of floods on the human community is related directly to the location and topography of the area, as well as human demographics and characteristics of the built environment. The aim of this study is to identify the health impacts of disasters and the underlying causes of health impacts associated with floods. A conceptual framework is developed that may assist with the development of a rational and comprehensive approach to prevention, mitigation, and management. This study involved an extensive literature review that located >500 references, which were analyzed to identify common themes, findings, and expert views. The findings then were distilled into common themes. The health impacts of floods are wide ranging, and depend on a number of factors. However, the health impacts of a particular flood are specific to the particular context. The immediate health impacts of floods include drowning, injuries, hypothermia, and animal bites. Health risks also are associated with the evacuation of patients, loss of health workers, and loss of health infrastructure including essential drugs and supplies. In the medium-term, infected wounds, complications of injury, poisoning, poor mental health, communicable diseases, and starvation are indirect effects of flooding. In the long-term, chronic disease, disability, poor mental health, and poverty-related diseases including malnutrition are the potential legacy. This article proposes a structured approach to the classification of the health impacts of floods and a conceptual framework that demonstrates the relationships between floods and the direct and indirect health consequences.
Knorr, Wolfgang; Dentener, Frank; Lamarque, Jean-François; Jiang, Leiwen; Arneth, Almut
Wildfires pose a significant risk to human livelihoods and are a substantial health hazard due to emissions of toxic smoke. Previous studies have shown that climate change, increasing atmospheric CO2, and human demographic dynamics can lead to substantially altered wildfire risk in the future, with fire activity increasing in some regions and decreasing in others. The present study re-examines these results from the perspective of air pollution risk, focussing on emissions of airborne particulate matter (PM2. 5), combining an existing ensemble of simulations using a coupled fire-dynamic vegetation model with current observation-based estimates of wildfire emissions and simulations with a chemical transport model. Currently, wildfire PM2. 5 emissions exceed those from anthropogenic sources in large parts of the world. We further analyse two extreme sets of future wildfire emissions in a socio-economic, demographic climate change context and compare them to anthropogenic emission scenarios reflecting current and ambitious air pollution legislation. In most regions of the world, ambitious reductions of anthropogenic air pollutant emissions have the potential to limit mean annual pollutant PM2. 5 levels to comply with World Health Organization (WHO) air quality guidelines for PM2. 5. Worst-case future wildfire emissions are not likely to interfere with these annual goals, largely due to fire seasonality, as well as a tendency of wildfire sources to be situated in areas of intermediate population density, as opposed to anthropogenic sources that tend to be highest at the highest population densities. However, during the high-fire season, we find many regions where future PM2. 5 pollution levels can reach dangerous levels even for a scenario of aggressive reduction of anthropogenic emissions.
De Sales, Fernando; Okin, Gregory S.; Xue, Yongkang; Dintwe, Kebonye
This study investigates the impact of wildfire on the climate of Southern Africa. Moderate resolution imaging spectroradiometer derived burned area fraction data was implemented in a set of simulations to assess primarily the role of wildfire-induced surface changes on monthly precipitation. Two post-fire scenarios are examined namely non-recovering and recovering vegetation scenarios. In the former, burned vegetation fraction remains burned until the end of the simulations, whereas in the latter it is allowed to regrow following a recovery period. Control simulations revealed that the model can dependably capture the monthly precipitation and surface temperature averages in Southern Africa thus providing a reasonable basis against which to assess the impacts of wildfire. In general, both wildfire scenarios have a negative impact on springtime precipitation. September and October were the only months with statistically significant precipitation changes. During these months, precipitation in the region decreases by approximately 13 and 9% in the non-recovering vegetation scenario, and by about 10 and 6% in the recovering vegetation wildfire scenario, respectively. The primary cause of precipitation deficit is the decrease in evapotranspiration resulting from a reduction in surface net radiation. Areas impacted by the precipitation reduction includes the Luanda, Kinshasa, and Brazzaville metropolitan areas, The Angolan Highlands, which are the source of the Okavango Rive, and the Okavango Delta region. This study suggests that a probable intensification in wildfire frequency and extent resulting from projected population increase and global warming in Southern Africa could potentially exacerbate the impacts of wildfires in the region's seasonal precipitation.
Stevens-Rumann, Camille; Morgan, Penelope
Most models project warmer and drier climates that will contribute to larger and more frequent wildfires. However, it remains unknown how repeated wildfires alter post-fire successional patterns and forest structure. Here, we test the hypothesis that the number of wildfires, as well as the order and severity of wildfire events interact to alter forest structure and vegetation recovery and implications for vegetation management. In 2014, we examined forest structure, composition, and tree regeneration in stands that burned 1-18 yr before a subsequent 2007 wildfire. Three important findings emerged: (1) Repeatedly burned forests had 15% less woody surface fuels and 31% lower tree seedling densities compared with forests that only experienced one recent wildfire. These repeatedly burned areas are recovering differently than sites burned once, which may lead to alternative ecosystem structure. (2) Order of burn severity (high followed by low severity compared with low followed by high severity) did influence forest characteristics. When low burn severity followed high, forests had 60% lower canopy closure and total basal area with 92% fewer tree seedlings than when high burn severity followed low. (3) Time between fires had no effect on most variables measured following the second fire except large woody fuels, canopy closure and tree seedling density. We conclude that repeatedly burned areas meet many vegetation management objectives of reduced fuel loads and moderate tree seedling densities. These differences in forest structure, composition, and tree regeneration have implications not only for the trajectories of these forests, but may reduce fire intensity and burn severity of subsequent wildfires and may be used in conjunction with future fire suppression tactics. © 2016 by the Ecological Society of America.
Full Text Available This paper develops a GIS-based integrated approach to the Multi-Hazard model method, with reference to hurricanes. This approach has three components: data integration, hazard assessment and score calculation to estimate elements at risk such as affected area and affected population. First, spatial data integration issues within a GIS environment, such as geographical scales and data models, are addressed. Particularly, the integration of physical parameters and population data is achieved linking remotely sensed data with a high resolution population distribution in GIS. In order to assess the number of affected people, involving heterogeneous data sources, the selection of spatial analysis units is basic. Second, specific multi-hazard tasks, such as hazard behaviour simulation and elements at risk assessment, are composed in order to understand complex hazard and provide support for decision making. Finally, the paper concludes that the integrated approach herein presented can be used to assist emergency management of hurricane consequences, in theory and in practice.
Daniel J. Fonseca
Full Text Available Atlantic hurricanes and severe tropical storms are a serious threat for the communities in the Gulf of Mexico region. Such storms are violent and destructive. In response to these dangers, coastal evacuation may be ordered. This paper describes the development of a simulation model to analyze the movement of vehicles through I-65, a major US Interstate highway that runs north off the coastal City of Mobile, Alabama, towards the State of Tennessee, during a massive evacuation originated by a disastrous event such a hurricane. The constructed simulation platform consists of a primary and two secondary models. The primary model is based on the entry of vehicles from the 20 on-ramps to I-65. The two secondary models assist the primary model with related traffic events such as car breakdowns and accidents, traffic control measures, interarrival signaling, and unforeseen emergency incidents, among others. Statistical testing was performed on the data generated by the simulation model to indentify variation in relevant traffic variables affecting the timely flow of vehicles travelling north. The performed statistical analysis focused on the closing of alternative on-ramps throughout the Interstate.
Currie, Janet; Rossin-Slater, Maya
A growing literature suggests that stressful events in pregnancy can have negative effects on birth outcomes. Some of the estimates in this literature may be affected by small samples, omitted variables, endogenous mobility in response to disasters, and errors in the measurement of gestation, as well as by a mechanical correlation between longer gestation and the probability of having been exposed. We use millions of individual birth records to examine the effects of exposure to hurricanes during pregnancy, and the sensitivity of the estimates to these econometric problems. We find that exposure to a hurricane during pregnancy increases the probability of abnormal conditions of the newborn such as being on a ventilator more than 30min and meconium aspiration syndrome (MAS). Although we are able to reproduce previous estimates of effects on birth weight and gestation, our results suggest that measured effects of stressful events on these outcomes are sensitive to specification and it is preferable to use more sensitive indicators of newborn health. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
Stronko, Jakob M.
Hurricane Sandy devastated some of the most heavily populated eastern coastal areas of the Nation. With a storm surge peaking at more than 19 feet, the powerful landscape-altering destruction of Hurricane Sandy is a stark reminder of why the Nation must become more resilient to coastal hazards. In response to this natural disaster, the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) received a total of $41.2 million in supplemental appropriations from the Department of the Interior (DOI) to support response, recovery, and rebuilding efforts. These funds support a science plan that will provide critical scientific information necessary to inform management decisions for recovery of coastal communities, and aid in preparation for future natural hazards. This science plan is designed to coordinate continuing USGS activities with stakeholders and other agencies to improve data collection and analysis that will guide recovery and restoration efforts. The science plan is split into five distinct themes: coastal topography and bathymetry, impacts to coastal beaches and barriers, impacts of storm surge, including disturbed estuarine and bay hydrology, impacts on environmental quality and persisting contaminant exposures, impacts to coastal ecosystems, habitats, and fish and wildlife. This fact sheet focuses assessing impacts to coastal beaches and barriers.
The National Water Model (NWM) is a remarkable undertaking. The foundation of the NWM is a 1 square kilometer grid which is used for near real-time modeling and flood forecasting of most rivers and streams in the contiguous United States. However, the NWM falls short in highly urbanized areas with complex drainage infrastructure. To overcome these shortcomings, the presenter proposes to leverage existing local hyper-resolution H&H models and adapt the NWM forcing data to them. Gridded near real-time rainfall, short range forecasts (18-hour) and medium range forecasts (10-day) during Hurricane Irma are applied to numerous detailed H&H models in highly urbanized areas of the State of Florida. Coastal and inland models are evaluated. Comparisons of near real-time rainfall data are made with observed gaged data and the ability to predict flooding in advance based on forecast data is evaluated. Preliminary findings indicate that the near real-time rainfall data is consistently and significantly lower than observed data. The forecast data is more promising. For example, the medium range forecast data provides 2 - 3 days advanced notice of peak flood conditions to a reasonable level of accuracy in most cases relative to both timing and magnitude. Short range forecast data provides about 12 - 14 hours advanced notice. Since these are hyper-resolution models, flood forecasts can be made at the street level, providing emergency response teams with valuable information for coordinating and dispatching limited resources.
Norman, Laura M.; Levick, Lainie; Guertin, D. Phillip; Callegary, James; Guadarrama, Jesus Quintanar; Anaya, Claudia Zulema Gil; Prichard, Andrea; Gray, Floyd; Castellanos, Edgar; Tepezano, Edgar; Huth, Hans; Vandervoet, Prescott; Rodriguez, Saul; Nunez, Jose; Atwood, Donald; Granillo, Gilberto Patricio Olivero; Ceballos, Francisco Octavio Gastellum
Flooding in Ambos Nogales often exceeds the capacity of the channel and adjacent land areas, endangering many people. The Nogales Wash is being studied to prevent future flood disasters and detention features are being installed in tributaries of the wash. This paper describes the application of the KINEROS2 model and efforts to understand the capacity of these detention features under various flood and urbanization scenarios. Results depict a reduction in peak flow for the 10-year, 1-hour event based on current land use in tributaries with detention features. However, model results also demonstrate that larger storm events and increasing urbanization will put a strain on the features and limit their effectiveness.
Bhattacharya, Biswa; Suman, Asadusjjaman
In recent years the world has experienced deaths, large-scale displacement of people, billions of Euros of economic damage, mental stress and ecosystem impacts due to flooding. Global changes (climate change, population and economic growth, and urbanisation) are exacerbating the severity of flooding. The 2010 floods in Pakistan and the 2011 floods in Australia and Thailand demonstrate the need for concerted action in the face of global societal and environmental changes to strengthen resilience against flooding. Due to climatological characteristics there are catchments where flood forecasting may have a relatively limited role and flood event management may have to be trusted upon. For example, in flash flood catchments, which often may be tiny and un-gauged, flood event management often depends on approximate prediction tools such as flash flood guidance (FFG). There are catchments fed largely by flood waters coming from upstream catchments, which are un-gauged or due to data sharing issues in transboundary catchments the flow of information from upstream catchment is limited. Hydrological and hydraulic modelling of these downstream catchments will never be sufficient to provide any required forecasting lead time and alternative tools to support flood event management will be required. In FFG, or similar approaches, the primary motif is to provide guidance by synthesising the historical data. We follow a similar approach to characterise past flood hydrographs to determine a flood index (FI), which varies in space and time with flood magnitude and its propagation. By studying the variation of the index the pockets of high flood risk, requiring attention, can be earmarked beforehand. This approach can be very useful in flood risk management of catchments where information about hydro-meteorological variables is inadequate for any forecasting system. This paper presents the development of FI and its application to several catchments including in Kentucky in the USA
Thomas, Hartmann; Spit, Tejo
The European flood risk management plan is a new instrument introduced by the Floods Directive. It introduces a spatial turn and a scenario approach in flood risk management, ultimately leading to differentiated flood protection levels on a catchment basis. This challenges the traditional sources of
Shao, Wanyun; Xian, Siyuan; Lin, Ning; Small, Mitchell J
The economic damage from coastal flooding has dramatically increased over the past several decades, owing to rapid development in shoreline areas and possible effects of climate change. To respond to these trends, it is imperative for policy makers to understand individuals' support for flood adaptation policy. Using original survey data for all coastal counties of the United States Gulf Coast merged with contextual data on flood risk, this study investigates coastal residents' support for two adaptation policy measures: incentives for relocation and funding for educational programs on emergency planning and evacuation. Specifically, this study explores the interactive relationships among contextual flood risks, perceived flood risks and policy support for flood adaptation, with the effects of social-demographic variables being controlled. Age, gender, race and partisanship are found to significantly affect individuals' policy support for both adaptation measures. The contextual flooding risks, indicated by distance from the coast, maximum wind speed and peak height of storm surge associated with the last hurricane landfall, and percentage of high-risk flood zone per county, are shown to impact one's perceptions of risk, which in turn influence one's support for both policy measures. The key finding -risk perception mediates the impact of contextual risk conditions on public support for flood management policies - highlights the need to ensure that the public is well informed by the latest scientific, engineering and economic knowledge. To achieve this, more information on current and future flood risks and options available for mitigation as well as risk communication tools are needed. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Nikitina, Daria; Horton, Benjamin; Khan, Nicole; Clear, Jennifer; Shaw, Timothy; Enache, Mihaela; Frizzera, Dorina; Procopio, Nick; Potapova, Marina
Hurricanes along the US Atlantic coast have caused significant damage and loss of human life over the last century. Recent studies suggest that intense-hurricane activity is closely related to changes of sea surface temperatures and therefore the risk of hurricane strikes may increase in the future. A clear understanding of the role of recent warming on tropical cyclone activity is limited by the shortness of the instrumental record. However, the sediment preserved beneath coastal wetlands is an archive of when hurricanes impacted the coast. We present two complimenting approaches that help to extend pre-historic record and assess frequency and intensity of hurricane landfalls along the New Jersey cost; dating overwash deposits and hurricane-induced salt-marsh erosion documented at multiple sites. The stratigraphic investigation of estuarine salt marshes in the southern New Jersey documented seven distinctive erosion events that correlate among different sites. Radiocarbon dates suggest the prehistoric events occurred in AD 558-673, AD 429-966, AD 558-673, Ad 1278-1438, AD 1526-1558 or AD 1630-1643 (Nikitina et al., 2014). Younger sequences correspond with historical land-falling hurricanes in AD 1903 and AD 1821 or AD 1788. Four events correlate well with barrier overwash deposits documented along the New Jersey coast (Donnelley et al., 2001 and 2004). The stratigraphic sequence of salt High resolution sedimentary-based reconstructions of past intense-hurricane landfalls indicate that significant variability in the frequency of intense hurricanes occurred over the last 2000 years.
Dibra, Besart [Keystone Engineering Inc., Vonore, TN (United States); Finucane, Zachary [Keystone Engineering Inc., Vonore, TN (United States); Foley, Benjamin [Keystone Engineering Inc., Vonore, TN (United States); Hall, Rudy [Keystone Engineering Inc., Vonore, TN (United States); Damiani, Rick [National Renewable Energy Lab. (NREL), Golden, CO (United States); Maples, Benjamin [National Renewable Energy Lab. (NREL), Golden, CO (United States); Parker, Zachary [National Renewable Energy Lab. (NREL), Golden, CO (United States); Robertson, Amy [National Renewable Energy Lab. (NREL), Golden, CO (United States); Scott, George [National Renewable Energy Lab. (NREL), Golden, CO (United States); Stehly, Tyler [National Renewable Energy Lab. (NREL), Golden, CO (United States); Wendt, Fabian [National Renewable Energy Lab. (NREL), Golden, CO (United States); Andersen, Mads Boel Overgaard [Siemens Wind Power A/S, Brande (Denmark); Standish, Kevin [Siemens Wind Power A/S, Brande (Denmark); Lee, Ken [Wetzel Engineering Inc., Round Rock, TX (United States); Raina, Amool [Wetzel Engineering Inc., Round Rock, TX (United States); Wetzel, Kyle [Wetzel Engineering Inc., Round Rock, TX (United States); Musial, Walter [National Renewable Energy Lab. (NREL), Golden, CO (United States); Schreck, Scott [National Renewable Energy Lab. (NREL), Golden, CO (United States)
Hurricanes occur over much of the U.S. Atlantic and Gulf coasts, from Long Island to the U.S.-Mexico border, encompassing much of the nation's primary offshore wind resource. Category 5 hurricanes have made landfall as far north as North Carolina, with Category 3 hurricanes reaching New York with some frequency. Along the US West coast, typhoons strike with similar frequency and severity. At present, offshore wind turbine design practices do not fully consider the severe operating conditions imposed by hurricanes. Although universally applied to most turbine designs, International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC) standards do not sufficiently address the duration, directionality, magnitude, or character of hurricanes. To assess advanced design features that could mitigate hurricane loading in various ways, this Hurricane-Resilient Wind Plant Concept Study considered a concept design study of a 500-megawatt (MW) wind power plant consisting of 10-MW wind turbines deployed in 25-meter (m) water depths in the Western Gulf of Mexico. This location was selected because hurricane frequency and severity provided a unique set of design challenges that would enable assessment of hurricane risk and projection of cost of energy (COE) changes, all in response to specific U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) objectives. Notably, the concept study pursued a holistic approach that incorporated multiple advanced system elements at the wind turbine and wind power plant levels to meet objectives for system performance and reduced COE. Principal turbine system elements included a 10-MW rotor with structurally efficient, low-solidity blades; a lightweight, permanent-magnet, direct-drive generator, and an innovative fixed substructure. At the wind power plant level, turbines were arrayed in a large-scale wind power plant in a manner aimed at balancing energy production against capital, installation, and operation and maintenance (O&M) costs to achieve significant overall reductions in
Coen, Janice L.
Wildland fire behavior, particularly that of large, uncontrolled wildfires, has not been well understood or predicted. Our methodology to simulate this phenomenon uses high-resolution dynamic models made of numerical weather prediction (NWP) models coupled to fire behavior models to simulate fire behavior. NWP models are capable of modeling very high resolution (< 100 m) atmospheric flows. The wildland fire component is based upon semi-empirical formulas for fireline rate of spread, post-frontal heat release, and a canopy fire. The fire behavior is coupled to the atmospheric model such that low level winds drive the spread of the surface fire, which in turn releases sensible heat, latent heat, and smoke fluxes into the lower atmosphere, feeding back to affect the winds directing the fire. These coupled dynamic models capture the rapid spread downwind, flank runs up canyons, bifurcations of the fire into two heads, and rough agreement in area, shape, and direction of spread at periods for which fire location data is available. Yet, intriguing computational science questions arise in applying such models in a predictive manner, including physical processes that span a vast range of scales, processes such as spotting that cannot be modeled deterministically, estimating the consequences of uncertainty, the efforts to steer simulations with field data ("data assimilation"), lingering issues with short term forecasting of weather that may show skill only on the order of a few hours, and the difficulty of gathering pertinent data for verification and initialization in a dangerous environment. © 2010 IEEE.
Schofield, Pamela J.; Slack, W. Todd; Peterson, Mark S.; Gregoire, Denise R.
We provide information about the effects of Hurricane Katrina on populations of an invasive fish, the Nile tilapia (Oreochromis niloticus) in southern Mississippi. By resampling areas surveyed before the storm, we attempted to determine whether the species expanded its range by moving with storm-related floods. Additionally, we used rotenone to eradicate individuals of this species at a hurricane-damaged aquaculture facility on the Mississippi coast. Although our survey was limited geographically, we did not find the species to occur beyond the aquaculture facility, other than in an adjacent bayou. Our rotenone treatment of the facility appeared effective with only a single O. niloticus being collected six weeks after the treatment. To reduce the spread of O. niloticus in the southeastern U.S., it is important to continue to control feral populations, work to eliminate vectors for dispersal, and continue monitoring their distribution.
Schmitt, Marcus [AREVA NP GmbH, Erlangen (Germany)
Even before the Fukushima event occurred some German nuclear power plants (NPP) have considered flooding scenarios. As a result of one of these studies, AREVA performed an upgrade project in NPP Isar 1 with flood-proof motors as a replacement of existing air-cooled low-voltage and high-voltage motors of the emergency cooling chain. After the Fukushima event, in which the cooling chains failed, the topic flood-proof equipment gets more and more into focus. This compact will introduce different kinds of flood-proof electrical motors which are currently installed or planned for installation into NPPs over the world. Moreover the process of qualification, as it was performed during the project in NPP Isar 1, will be shown. (orig.)
Mold growth may be a problem after flooding. Excess moisture in the home is cause for concern about indoor air quality primarily because it provides breeding conditions for pests, molds and other microorganisms.
Federal Emergency Management Agency, Department of Homeland Security — The Floodplain Mapping/Redelineation study deliverables depict and quantify the flood risks for the study area. The primary risk classifications used are the...
Even before the Fukushima event occurred some German nuclear power plants (NPP) have considered flooding scenarios. As a result of one of these studies, AREVA performed an upgrade project in NPP Isar 1 with flood-proof motors as a replacement of existing air-cooled low-voltage and high-voltage motors of the emergency cooling chain. After the Fukushima event, in which the cooling chains failed, the topic flood-proof equipment gets more and more into focus. This compact will introduce different kinds of flood-proof electrical motors which are currently installed or planned for installation into NPPs over the world. Moreover the process of qualification, as it was performed during the project in NPP Isar 1, will be shown. (orig.)
Syarifah, Wardatus; Apriliani, Erna
Wildfire is one of the most frequent disasters in the world, for example forest wildfire, causing population of forest decrease. Forest wildfire, whether naturally occurring or prescribed, are potential risks for ecosystems and human settlements. These risks can be managed by monitoring the weather, prescribing fires to limit available fuel, and creating firebreaks. With computer simulations we can predict and explore how fires may spread. The model of fire spread on forest wildfire was established to determine the fire properties. The fire spread model is prepared based on the equation of the diffusion reaction model. There are many methods to estimate the spread of fire. The Kalman Filter Ensemble Method is a modified estimation method of the Kalman Filter algorithm that can be used to estimate linear and non-linear system models. In this research will apply Ensemble Kalman Filter (EnKF) method to estimate the spread of fire on forest wildfire. Before applying the EnKF method, the fire spread model will be discreted using finite difference method. At the end, the analysis obtained illustrated by numerical simulation using software. The simulation results show that the Ensemble Kalman Filter method is closer to the system model when the ensemble value is greater, while the covariance value of the system model and the smaller the measurement.
Kvočka, Davor; Falconer, Roger A.; Bray, Michaela
Contemporary climate projections suggest that there will be an increase in the occurrence of high-intensity rainfall events in the future. These precipitation extremes are usually the main cause for the emergence of extreme flooding, such as flash flooding. Flash floods are among the most unpredictable, violent and fatal natural hazards in the world. Furthermore, it is expected that flash flooding will occur even more frequently in the future due to more frequent development of extreme weather events, which will greatly increase the danger to people caused by flash flooding. This being the case, there will be a need for high resolution flood hazard maps in areas susceptible to flash flooding. This study investigates what type of flood hazard assessment methods should be used for assessing the flood hazard to people caused by flash flooding. Two different types of flood hazard assessment methods were tested: (i) a widely used method based on an empirical analysis, and (ii) a new, physically based and experimentally calibrated method. Two flash flood events were considered herein, namely: the 2004 Boscastle flash flood and the 2007 Železniki flash flood. The results obtained in this study suggest that in the areas susceptible to extreme flooding, the flood hazard assessment should be conducted using methods based on a mechanics-based analysis. In comparison to standard flood hazard assessment methods, these physically based methods: (i) take into account all of the physical forces, which act on a human body in floodwater, (ii) successfully adapt to abrupt changes in the flow regime, which often occur for flash flood events, and (iii) rapidly assess a flood hazard index in a relatively short period of time.
Ren, J.; Robichaud, P. J. L.; Adam, J. C.
Sedimentation is important issue to most rivers and reservoirs especially in watersheds with extensive agricultural or wildfire activity. These human and natural induced disturbances have the potential to increase runoff-induced erosion and sediment load to rivers; downstream sedimentation can decrease the life expectancy of reservoir and consequently the dam. This is particularly critical in snowmelt-dominant regions because, as rising temperatures reduce snowpack as a natural reservoir, humans will become more reliant on reservoir storage. In the Northwest U.S., the Columbia River Basin (CRB) has more than 60 dams, which were built for irrigation, hydropower, and flood control, all of which are affected by sediment to varying degrees. Determining what dams are most likely to be affected by sedimentation caused by post-fire erosion is important for future management of reservoirs, especially as climate change is anticipated to exacerbate wildfire and its impacts. The objective of this study is to create a sedimentation vulnerability map for reservoirs in the CRB. There are four attributes of a watershed that determine erosion potential; soil type, topography, vegetation (such as forests, shrubs, and grasslands), and precipitation (although precipitation was excluded in this analysis). In this study, a rating system was developed on a scale of 0-90 (with 90 having the greatest erosion potential). The different layers in a Graphical Information System were combined to create an erosion vulnerability map. Results suggest that areas with agriculture have more erosion without a wildfire but that forested areas are most vulnerable to erosion rates following a fire, particularly a high severity fire. Sedimentation in dams is a growing problem that needs to be addressed especially with the likely reduction in snowpack, this vulnerability map will help determine which reservoirs in the CRB are prone to high sedimentation. This information can inform managers where post
... 50 Wildlife and Fisheries 6 2010-10-01 2010-10-01 false Control of wildfires, insects, pest plants... MANAGEMENT General Rules § 35.7 Control of wildfires, insects, pest plants, and disease. To the extent necessary, the Director shall prescribe measures to control wildfires, insects, pest plants, and disease to...
Matthew P. Peters; Louis R. Iverson
Wildfires in the eastern United States are generally caused by humans in locations where human development and natural vegetation intermingle, e.g. the wildlandâurban interface (WUI). Knowing where wildfire hazards are elevated across the forested landscape may help land managers and property owners plan or allocate resources for potential wildfire threats. In an...
Gabriel Wigtil; Roger B. Hammer; Jeffrey D. Kline; Miranda H. Mockrin; Susan I. Stewart; Daniel Roper; Volker C. Radeloff
The hazards-of-place model posits that vulnerability to environmental hazards depends on both biophysical and social factors. Biophysical factors determine where wildfire potential is elevated, whereas social factors determine where and how people are affected by wildfire. We evaluated place vulnerability to wildfire hazards in the coterminous US. We developed...
Michele Salis; Alan A. Ager; Bachisio Arca; Mark A. Finney; Valentina Bacciu; Pierpaolo Duce; Donatella. Spano
We used simulation modelling to analyze spatial variation in wildfire exposure relative to key social and economic features on the island of Sardinia, Italy. Sardinia contains a high density of urban interfaces, recreational values and highly valued agricultural areas that are increasingly being threatened by severe wildfires. Historical fire data and wildfire...
G.H. Donovan; P.A. Champ; D.T. Butry
We examine an innovative wildfire risk education program in Colorado Springs, which rated the wildfire risk of 35,000 homes in the city's wildland urban interface. Evidence from home sales before and after the program's implementation suggests that the program was successful at changing homebuyers' attitudes toward wildfire risk, particularly preferences...
Heidi L. Ballard; Emily Evans; Victoria E. Sturtevant; Pamela. Jakes
Many environmental education programs in the United States educate youth about the prevention of wildfire and its role in ecosystems.We reviewed 50 wildfire education programs for youth (WEY) in the U.S. through an Internet search and interviews with program providers. We investigated whether they reflect current wildfire science, environmental education (EE)...
A. Paige Fischer; Thomas A Spies; Toddi A Steelman; Cassandra Moseley; Bart R Johnson; John D Bailey; Alan A Ager; Patrick Bourgeron; Susan Charnley; Brandon M Collins; Jeffrey D Kline; Jessica E Leahy; Jeremy S Littell; James DA Millington; Max Nielsen-Pincus; Christine S Olsen; Travis B Paveglio; Christopher I Roos; Michelle M Steen-Adams; Forrest R Stevens; Jelena Vukomanovic; Eric M White; David M. J. S. Bowman
Despite dramatic increases in suppression spending, the risk of life and property loss associated with wildfire has continued to rise in recent decades. Economic losses from wildfires have doubled in the United States and suppression expenses have tripled between 2002 and 2012 compared to the decade prior. Loss of property to wildfire has outpaced efforts to reduce...
Ryan B. Walker; Jonathan D. Coop; Sean A. Parks; Laura Trader
Extensive high-severity wildfires have driven major losses of ponderosa pine and mixed-conifer forests in the southwestern United States, in some settings catalyzing enduring conversions to nonforested vegetation types. Management interventions to reduce the probability of stand-replacing wildfire have included mechanical fuel treatments, prescribed fire, and wildfire...
Peter F. Ffolliott; Cody L. Stropki; Hui Chen; Daniel G. Neary
The Rodeo-Chediski Wildfire burned nearly 462,600 acres in north-central Arizona in the summer of 2002. The wildfire damaged or destroyed ecosystem resources and disrupted the hydrologic functioning within the impacted ponderosa pine (Pinus ponderosa) forests in a largely mosaic pattern. Impacts of the wildfire on ecosystem resources, factors important to hydrologic...
Quresh Latif; Jamie Sanderlin; Vicki Saab; William Block; Jonathan Dudley
Wildfire is a key factor influencing bird community composition in western North American forests. We need to understand species and community responses to wildfire and how responses vary regionally to effectively manage dry conifer forests for maintaining biodiversity. We compared avian relationships with wildfire burn severity between two dry forest...
Jayakaran, A. D.; Williams, T. M.; Ssegane, H.; Amatya, D. M.; Song, B.; Trettin, C. C.
Hurricanes are infrequent but influential disruptors of ecosystem processes in the southeastern Atlantic and Gulf coasts. Every southeastern forested wetland has the potential to be struck by a tropical cyclone. We examined the impact of Hurricane Hugo on two paired coastal South Carolina watersheds in terms of streamflow and vegetation dynamics, both before and after the hurricane's passage in 1989. The study objectives were to quantify the magnitude and timing of changes including a reversal in relative streamflow difference between two paired watersheds, and to examine the selective impacts of a hurricane on the vegetative composition of the forest. We related these impacts to their potential contribution to change watershed hydrology through altered evapotranspiration processes. Using over 30 years of monthly rainfall and streamflow data we showed that there was a significant transformation in the hydrologic character of the two watersheds - a transformation that occurred soon after the hurricane's passage. We linked the change in the rainfall-runoff relationship to a catastrophic change in forest vegetation due to selective hurricane damage. While both watersheds were located in the path of the hurricane, extant forest structure varied between the two watersheds as a function of experimental forest management techniques on the treatment watershed. We showed that the primary damage was to older pines, and to some extent larger hardwood trees. We believe that lowered vegetative water use impacted both watersheds with increased outflows on both watersheds due to loss of trees following hurricane impact. However, one watershed was able to recover to pre hurricane levels of evapotranspiration at a quicker rate due to the greater abundance of pine seedlings and saplings in that watershed.
Yellen, Brian; Woodruff, Jon D.; Kratz, Laura N.; Mabee, Steven B.; Morrison, Jonathan; Martini, Anna M.
Hurricane Irene passed directly over the Connecticut River valley in late August, 2011. Intense precipitation and high antecedent soil moisture resulted in record flooding, mass wasting and fluvial erosion, allowing for observations of how these rare but significant extreme events affect a landscape still responding to Pleistocene glaciation and associated sediment emplacement. Clays and silts from upland glacial deposits, once suspended in the stream network, were routed directly to the mouth of the Connecticut River, resulting in record-breaking sediment loads fifteen-times greater than predicted from the pre-existing rating curve. Denudation was particularly extensive in mountainous areas. We calculate that sediment yield during the event from the Deerfield River, a steep tributary comprising 5% of the entire Connecticut River watershed, exceeded at minimum 10–40 years of routine sediment discharge and accounted for approximately 40% of the total event sediment discharge from the Connecticut River. A series of surface sediment cores taken in floodplain ponds adjacent to the tidal section of the Connecticut River before and after the event provides insight into differences in sediment sourcing and routing for the Irene event compared to periods of more routine flooding. Relative to routine conditions, sedimentation from Irene was anomalously inorganic, fine grained, and enriched in elements commonly found in chemically immature glacial tills and glaciolacustrine material. These unique sedimentary characteristics document the crucial role played by extreme precipitation from tropical disturbances in denuding this landscape.
Full Text Available Cyclonic storms that closely resemble tropical cyclones in satellite images occasionally form over the Mediterranean Sea. Synoptic and mesoscale analyses of such storms show small, warm-core structure and surface winds sometimes exceeding 25ms-1 over small areas. These analyses, together with numerical simulations, reveal that in their mature stages, such storms intensify and are maintained by a feedback between surface enthalpy fluxes and wind, and as such are isomorphic with tropical cyclones. In this paper, I demonstrate that a cold, upper low over the Mediterranean can produce strong cyclogenesis in an axisymmetric model, thereby showing that baroclinic instability is not necessary during the mature stages of Mediterranean hurricanes.
Funderburk, W.; Carter, G. A.; Harley, G. L.
William R. Funderburk, Gregory A. Carter, Grant Harley Gulf Coast Geospatial Center, University of Southern Mississippi Department of Geography and Geology Stennis Space Center, MS 39529 U.S.A. firstname.lastname@example.org The Mississippi-Alabama barrier islands serve to buffer mainland coastal areas from the impacts of hurricanes and other extreme weather events. On August 29, 2005, they were impacted heavily by the wind, waves, and storm surges of Hurricane Katrina. The purpose of this study is to determine the growth responses of Quercus geminata, a dominant tree species on Cat Island, MS, in relation to the impact of Hurricane Katrina. Remotely sensed data was utilized in conjunction with ground data to assess growth response post Hurricane Katrina. The main objectives of this study were: 1) determine growth response of Q. geminata through tree ring analysis; 2) understand how Q. geminata adapted to intense weather and climatic phenomena on Cat Island. The hypotheses tested were: 1) growth rates of Q. geminata on Cat Island were decreased by the impact of Hurricane Katrina 2) trees at higher elevations survived or recovered while trees at lower elevations did not recover or died. Decadal scale stability is required for forest stand development on siliciclastic barrier islands. Thus, monitoring the distribution of forest climax community species is key to understanding siliciclastic, subsiding, barrier island geomorphic processes and their relationships to successional patterns and growth rates. Preliminary results indicate that Q. geminata produces a faint growth ring, survive for at least two to three hundred years and is well-adapted to frequent salt water flooding. Cat Island: False color Image
Lear, Matthew R
Forecast hurricane tracks using a multi-model ensemble that consists of linearly combining the individual model forecasts have greatly reduced the average forecast errors when compared to individual...
Lear, Matthew R
Forecast hurricane tracks using a multi-model ensemble that consists of linearly combining the individual model forecasts have greatly reduced the average forecast errors when compared to individual...
New high-resolution information of the vertical thermodynamic and kinematic structure of the hurricane inner-core is now available from aircraft released Global Positioning System (GPS) dropwindsondes...
Adams, Ian S; Hennon, Christopther C; Jones, W. L; Ahmad, Khalil
.... In late 2004, the first preliminary oceanic wind vector results were released, and this paper presents the first evaluation of this product for several Atlantic hurricanes during the 2003 season...
Alberto, Carlos; Fernandes, Santos
.... Although WaveWatchIII (WW3) is used by many operational forecasting centers around the world, there is a lack of field studies to evaluate its accuracy in regional applications and under extreme conditions, such as Hurricanes...
McCarthy, Kevin; Peterson, D. J; Sastry, Narayan; Pollard, Michael
What the future size and composition of the population of New Orleans will be in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina is a topic of intense interest and discussion among current and displaced residents of the city...
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — The imagery posted on this site is of Hurricane Sandy. The aerial photography missions were conducted by the NOAA Remote Sensing Division. The images were acquired...
Weinrich, S; Hardin, S B; Johnson, M
Hugo, a class IV hurricane, hit South Carolina September 22, 1989, and left behind a wake of terror and destruction. Sixty-one nursing students and five faculty were involved in disaster relief with families devastated by the hurricane. A review of the literature led these authors to propose a formulation of the concept of disaster stress, a synthesis of theories that explains response to disaster as a crisis response, a stress response, or as posttraumatic stress. With the concept of disaster stress serving as a theoretical foundation, the nurses observed, assessed, and intervened with one population of hurricane Hugo victims, noting their immediate psychosocial reactions and coping mechanisms. Victims' reactions to disaster stress included confusion, irritability, lethargy, withdrawal, and crying. The most frequently observed coping strategy of these hurricane Hugo victims was talking about their experiences; other coping tactics involved humor, religion, and altruism.
.... The purpose of the study is to provide the Rhode Island Emergency Management Agency and Rhode Island coastal communities with realistic data quantifying the major factors involved in hurricane...
Pizzi, Michael A
Hurricane Sandy was the second largest and costliest hurricane in U.S. history to affect multiple states and communities. This article describes the lived experiences of 24 occupational therapy students who lived through Hurricane Sandy using the Recovery Model to frame the research. Occupational therapy student narratives were collected and analyzed using qualitative methods and framed by the Recovery Model. Directed content and thematic analysis was performed using the 10 components of the Recovery Model. The 10 components of the Recovery Model were experienced by or had an impact on the occupational therapy students as they coped and recovered in the aftermath of the natural disaster. This study provides insight into the lived experiences and recovery perspectives of occupational therapy students who experienced Hurricane Sandy. Further research is indicated in applying the Recovery Model to people who survive disasters. Copyright © 2015 by the American Occupational Therapy Association, Inc.
Shultz, James M; McLean, Andrew; Herberman Mash, Holly B; Rosen, Alexa; Kelly, Fiona; Solo-Gabriele, Helena M; Youngs Jr, Georgia A; Jensen, Jessica; Bernal, Oscar; Neria, Yuval
Introduction. In 2011, following heavy winter snowfall, two cities bordering two rivers in North Dakota, USA faced major flood threats. Flooding was foreseeable and predictable although the extent of risk was uncertain. One community, Fargo, situated in a shallow river basin, successfully mitigated and prevented flooding. For the other community, Minot, located in a deep river valley, prevention was not possible and downtown businesses and one-quarter of the homes were inundated, in the city’s worst flood on record. We aimed at contrasting the respective hazards, vulnerabilities, stressors, psychological risk factors, psychosocial consequences, and disaster risk reduction strategies under conditions where flood prevention was, and was not, possible. Methods. We applied the “trauma signature analysis” (TSIG) approach to compare the hazard profiles, identify salient disaster stressors, document the key components of disaster risk reduction response, and examine indicators of community resilience. Results. Two demographically-comparable communities, Fargo and Minot, faced challenging river flood threats and exhibited effective coordination across community sectors. We examined the implementation of disaster risk reduction strategies in situations where coordinated citizen action was able to prevent disaster impact (hazard avoidance) compared to the more common scenario when unpreventable disaster strikes, causing destruction, harm, and distress. Across a range of indicators, it is clear that successful mitigation diminishes both physical and psychological impact, thereby reducing the trauma signature of the event. Conclusion. In contrast to experience of historic flooding in Minot, the city of Fargo succeeded in reducing the trauma signature by way of reducing risk through mitigation. PMID:28228985
Full Text Available Biomass burning is one of the largest sources of atmospheric trace gases and aerosols globally. These emissions have a major impact on the radiative balance of the atmosphere and on air quality, and are thus of significant scientific and societal interest. Several datasets have been developed that quantify those emissions on a global grid and offered to the atmospheric modelling community. However, no study has yet attempted to systematically quantify the dependence of the inferred pyrogenic emissions on underlying assumptions and input data. Such a sensitivity study is needed for understanding how well we can currently model those emissions and what the factors are that contribute to uncertainties in those emission estimates.
Here, we combine various satellite-derived burned area products, a terrestrial ecosystem model to simulate fuel loads and the effect of fire on ecosystem dynamics, a model of fuel combustion, and various emission models that relate combusted biomass to the emission of various trace gases and aerosols. We carry out simulations with varying parameters for combustion completeness and fuel decomposition rates within published estimates, four different emissions models and three different global burned-area products. We find that variations in combustion completeness and simulated fuel loads have the largest impact on simulated global emissions for most species, except for some with highly uncertain emission factors. Variation in burned-area estimates also contribute considerably to emission uncertainties. We conclude that global models urgently need more field-based data for better parameterisation of combustion completeness and validation of simulated fuel loads, and that further validation and improvement of burned area information is necessary for accurately modelling global wildfire emissions. The results are important for chemical transport modelling studies, and for simulations of biomass burning impacts on the
Costa, Ricardo; Caramelo, Liliana; Pereira, Mário
Several studies demonstrate that wildfires in Portugal present high temporal and spatial variability as well as cluster behavior (Pereira et al., 2005, 2011). This study aims to contribute to the characterization of the fire regime in Portugal with the multivariate statistical analysis of the time series of number of fires and area burned in Portugal during the 1980 - 2009 period. The data used in the analysis is an extended version of the Rural Fire Portuguese Database (PRFD) (Pereira et al, 2011), provided by the National Forest Authority (Autoridade Florestal Nacional, AFN), the Portuguese Forest Service, which includes information for more than 500,000 fire records. There are many multiple advanced techniques for examining the relationships among multiple time series at the same time (e.g., canonical correlation analysis, principal components analysis, factor analysis, path analysis, multiple analyses of variance, clustering systems). This study compares and discusses the results obtained with these different techniques. Pereira, M.G., Trigo, R.M., DaCamara, C.C., Pereira, J.M.C., Leite, S.M., 2005: "Synoptic patterns associated with large summer forest fires in Portugal". Agricultural and Forest Meteorology. 129, 11-25. Pereira, M. G., Malamud, B. D., Trigo, R. M., and Alves, P. I.: The history and characteristics of the 1980-2005 Portuguese rural fire database, Nat. Hazards Earth Syst. Sci., 11, 3343-3358, doi:10.5194/nhess-11-3343-2011, 2011 This work is supported by European Union Funds (FEDER/COMPETE - Operational Competitiveness Programme) and by national funds (FCT - Portuguese Foundation for Science and Technology) under the project FCOMP-01-0124-FEDER-022692, the project FLAIR (PTDC/AAC-AMB/104702/2008) and the EU 7th Framework Program through FUME (contract number 243888).
David T. Butry; Jeffrey P. Prestemon; Douglas S. Thomas
The number of smoking-caused wildfires has been falling nationwide. In national forests in 2011, smoking-caused wildfires represented only 10% of their 1980 level. No other cause of wildfire has experienced this level of decline. For 12 states, we evaluate the rate of smoking-caused wildfires and find it is a function of weather, other ignitions, the number of adult...
Xuan Chen; Barry K. Goodwin; Jeffrey P. Prestemon
In the U.S. forest products industry, wildfire is one of the leading causes of damage and economic losses. While individual wildfire behavior is well studied, new literature is emerging on broad-scale (e.g., county-level) wildfire risks. Our paper studies wildfire risks using crucial informational variÂ ables across both spatio units and time periods....
Applying lessons learned in Hurricane Floyd in 1999, a three-hospital system located on Florida's exposed Space Coast was able to better deal with the devastation caused by hurricanes in 2004 and make changes in its plans to better prepare for the named storms which hit its area in 2008. Each new disaster, the author points out, brings with it new challenges which have to be considered in disaster planning.
Sarmiento, Daniel; Barr, Jordan; Engel, Vic; Fuentes, Jose D.; Smith, Thomas J.; Zieman, Jay C.
On October 24th, 2005, Hurricane Wilma made landfall on the south western shore of the Florida peninsula. This major disturbance destroyed approximately 30 percent of the mangrove forests in the area. However, the damage to the ecosystem following the hurricane provided researchers at the Florida Coastal Everglades (FCE) LTER site with the rare opportunity to track the recovery process of the mangroves as determined by carbon dioxide (CO2) and energy exchanges, measured along daily and seasonal time scales.
García Herrera, Ricardo; Gimeno, Luis; Ribera, Pedro; Hernández, Emiliano; González, Ester; Fernández, Guadalupe
This paper analyses five hurricanes that occurred in the period 1600 to 1800. These examples were identified during a systematic search in the General Archive of the Indies (AGI) in Seville. The research combined the expertise of climatologists and historians in order to optimise the search and analysis strategies. Results demonstrate the potential of this archive for the assessment of hurricanes in this period and show some of the difficulties involved in the collection of evidence of hurric...
Harris, M. S.; Levine, N. S.; Jaume, S. C.; Hendricks, J. K.; Rubin, N. D.; Hernandez, J. L.
The impacts on the Southeastern United States (SEUS, Western Atlantic) from Hurricane Irma in Sept 2017 were felt primarily on the active coastline with the third highest inland storm surge in Charleston and Savannah since the 19th Century. Coastal geometry, waves, and wind duration had a strong influence on the storm surge and coastal erosion impacts regionally. To the North and immediate South, impacts were much less. A full year after the 2016 hurricane season (Hurricane Matthew), the lack of regional recovery reduced protection against Irma. The most devastating impacts of Irma in the SAB occurred from 300 to 500 km away from the eye, on the opposite side of the Floridian peninsula. As Irma devastated the Caribbean, winds started to increases off the SAB on September 8 in the early morning, continuing for the next 3 days and blowing directly towards the SC and GA coasts. Tide gauges started to respond the night of September 8, while waves started arriving in the SEUS around Sept 6. Coastal erosion pre- and post-Irma has been calculated for Central SC using vertical and oblique aerial photos. Citizen Science initiatives through the Charleston Resilience Network have provided on-the-ground data during storms when transportation infrastructures were closed, and allow for ground-truth post-storm of surge and impacts. Said information was collected through Facebook, Google, and other social media. Pictures with timestamps and water heights were collected and are validating inundation flood maps generated for the Charleston SC region. The maps have 1-m horizontal and 7- to 15-cm vertical accuracy. Inundation surfaces were generated at MHHW up to a maximum surge in 6 inch increments. The flood extents of the modeled surge and the photographic evidence show a high correspondence. Storm surge measurements from RTK-GPS provide regional coverage of surge elevations from the coast, inland, and allow for testing of modeled results and model tuning. With Hurricane Irma
Eui Hoon Lee
Full Text Available Imperviousness has increased due to urbanization, as has the frequency of extreme rainfall events by climate change. Various countermeasures, such as structural and nonstructural measures, are required to prepare for these effects. Flood forecasting is a representative nonstructural measure. Flood forecasting techniques have been developed for the prevention of repetitive flood damage in urban areas. It is difficult to apply some flood forecasting techniques using training processes because training needs to be applied at every usage. The other flood forecasting techniques that use rainfall data predicted by radar are not appropriate for small areas, such as single drainage basins. In this study, a new flood forecasting technique is suggested to reduce flood damage in urban areas. The flood nomograph consists of the first flooding nodes in rainfall runoff simulations with synthetic rainfall data at each duration. When selecting the first flooding node, the initial amount of synthetic rainfall is 1 mm, which increases in 1 mm increments until flooding occurs. The advantage of this flood forecasting technique is its simple application using real-time rainfall data. This technique can be used to prepare a preemptive response in the process of urban flood management.
Abayneh Abebe, Yared; Vojinovic, Zoran; Nikolic, Igor; Hammond, Michael; Sanchez, Arlex; Pelling, Mark
Floods in coastal regions are regarded as one of the most dangerous and harmful disasters. Though commonly referred to as natural disasters, coastal floods are also attributable to various social, economic, historical and political issues. Rapid urbanisation in coastal areas combined with climate change and poor governance can lead to a significant increase in the risk of pluvial flooding coinciding with fluvial and coastal flooding posing a greater risk of devastation in coastal communities. Disasters that can be triggered by hydro-meteorological events are interconnected and interrelated with both human activities and natural processes. They, therefore, require holistic approaches to help understand their complexity in order to design and develop adaptive risk management approaches that minimise social and economic losses and environmental impacts, and increase resilience to such events. Being located in the North Atlantic Ocean, Sint Maarten is frequently subjected to hurricanes. In addition, the stormwater catchments and streams on Sint Maarten have several unique characteristics that contribute to the severity of flood-related impacts. Urban environments are usually situated in low-lying areas, with little consideration for stormwater drainage, and as such are subject to flash flooding. Hence, Sint Maarten authorities drafted policies to minimise the risk of flood-related disasters on the island. In this study, an agent-based model is designed and applied to understand the implications of introduced policies and regulations, and to understand how different actors' behaviours influence the formation, propagation and accumulation of flood risk. The agent-based model built for this study is based on the MAIA meta-model, which helps to decompose, structure and conceptualize socio-technical systems with an agent-oriented perspective, and is developed using the NetLogo simulation environment. The agents described in this model are households and businesses, and
Vieten, Rolf; Warken, Sophie; Winter, Amos; Schröder-Ritzrau, Andrea; Scholz, Denis; Spötl, Christoph
Hurricane-induced rainfall over Puerto Rico has characteristic δ18O values which are more negative than local rainfall events. Thus, hurricanes may be recorded in speleothems from Larga cave, Puerto Rico, as characteristic oxygen isotope excursions. Samples of 84 local rainfall events between 2012 and 2013 ranged from -6.2 to +0.3‰, whereas nine rainfall samples belonging to a rainband of hurricane Isaac (23-24 August 2012) ranged from -11.8 to -7.1‰. Cave monitoring covered the hurricane season of 2014 and investigated the impact of hurricane rainfall on drip water chemistry. δ18O values were measured in cumulative monthly rainwater samples above the cave. Inside the cave, δ18O values of instantaneous drip water samples were analyzed and drip rates were recorded at six drip sites. Most effective recharge appears to occur during the wet months (April-May and August-November). δ18O values of instantaneous drip water samples ranged from -3.5 to -2.4‰. In April 2014 and April 2015 some drip sites showed more negative δ18O values than the effective rainfall (-2.9‰), implying an influence of hurricane rainfall reaching the cave via stratified seepage flow months to years after the event. Speleothems from these drip sites in Larga cave have a high potential for paleotempestology studies.
Balaguru, Karthik; Ruby Leung, L; Yoon, Jin-ho
Sea surface temperature (SST) is not the only oceanic parameter that can play a key role in the interannual variability of Northeast Pacific hurricane activity. Using several observational data sets and the statistical technique of multiple linear regression analysis, we show that, along with SST, the thermocline depth (TD) plays an important role in hurricane activity at interannual timescales in this basin. Based on the parameter that dominates, the ocean basin can be divided into two sub-regions. In the Southern sub-region, which includes the hurricane main development area, interannual variability of the upper-ocean heat content (OHC) is primarily controlled by TD variations. Consequently, the interannual variability in the hurricane power dissipation index (PDI), which is a measure of the intensity of hurricane activity, is driven by that of the TD. On the other hand, in the Northern sub-region, SST exerts the major control over the OHC variability and, in turn, the PDI. Our study suggests that both SST and TD have a significant influence on the Northeast Pacific hurricane activity at interannual timescales and that their respective roles are more clearly delineated when sub-regions along an approximate north–south demarcation are considered rather than the basin as a whole. (letter)
Walliman, Nicholas; Ogden, Ray; Amouzad*, Shahrzhad
Over the last decade the average annual loss across the European Union due to flooding has been 4.5bn Euros, but increasingly intense rainfall, as well as population growth, urbanisation and the rising costs of asset replacements, may see this rise to 23bn Euros a year by 2050. Equally disturbing are the profound social costs to individuals, families and communities which in addition to loss of lives include: loss of livelihoods, decreased purchasing and production power, relocation and migration, adverse psychosocial effects, and hindrance of economic growth and development. Flood prediction, management and defence strategies rely on the availability of accurate information and flood modelling. Whilst automated data gathering (by measurement and satellite) of the extent of flooding is already advanced it is least reliable in urban and physically complex geographies where often the need for precise estimation is most acute. Crowdsourced data of actual flood events is a potentially critical component of this allowing improved accuracy in situations and identifying the effects of local landscape and topography where the height of a simple kerb, or discontinuity in a boundary wall can have profound importance. Mobile 'App' based data acquisition using crowdsourcing in critical areas can combine camera records with GPS positional data and time, as well as descriptive data relating to the event. This will automatically produce a dataset, managed in ArcView GIS, with the potential for follow up calls to get more information through structured scripts for each strand. Through this local residents can provide highly detailed information that can be reflected in sophisticated flood protection models and be core to framing urban resilience strategies and optimising the effectiveness of investment. This paper will describe this pioneering approach that will develop flood event data in support of systems that will advance existing approaches such as developed in the in the UK
Saleh, F.; Ramaswamy, V.; Wang, Y.; Georgas, N.; Blumberg, A.; Pullen, J.
Estuarine regions can experience compound impacts from coastal storm surge and riverine flooding. The challenges in forecasting flooding in such areas are multi-faceted due to uncertainties associated with meteorological drivers and interactions between hydrological and coastal processes. The objective of this work is to evaluate how uncertainties from meteorological predictions propagate through an ensemble-based flood prediction framework and translate into uncertainties in simulated inundation extents. A multi-scale framework, consisting of hydrologic, coastal and hydrodynamic models, was used to simulate two extreme flood events at the confluence of the Passaic and Hackensack rivers and Newark Bay. The events were Hurricane Irene (2011), a combination of inland flooding and coastal storm surge, and Hurricane Sandy (2012) where coastal storm surge was the dominant component. The hydrodynamic component of the framework was first forced with measured streamflow and ocean water level data to establish baseline inundation extents with the best available forcing data. The coastal and hydrologic models were then forced with meteorological predictions from 21 ensemble members of the Global Ensemble Forecast System (GEFS) to retrospectively represent potential future conditions up to 96 hours prior to the events. Inundation extents produced by the hydrodynamic model, forced with the 95th percentile of the ensemble-based coastal and hydrologic boundary conditions, were in good agreement with baseline conditions for both events. The USGS reanalysis of Hurricane Sandy inundation extents was encapsulated between the 50th and 95th percentile of the forecasted inundation extents, and that of Hurricane Irene was similar but with caveats associated with data availability and reliability. This work highlights the importance of accounting for meteorological uncertainty to represent a range of possible future inundation extents at high resolution (∼m).
Follansbee, Robert; Sawyer, Leon R.
The first records of floods in Colorado antedated the settlement of the State by about 30 years. These were records of floods on the Arkansas and Republican Rivers in 1826. Other floods noted by traders, hunters and emigrants, some of whom were on their way to the Far West, occurred in 1844 on the Arkansas River, and by inference on the South Platte River. Other early floods were those on the Purgatoire, the Lower Arkansas, and the San Juan Rivers about 1859. The most serious flood since settlement began was that on the Arkansas River during June 1921, which caused the loss of about 100 lives and an estimated property loss of $19,000,000. Many floods of lesser magnitude have occurred, and some of these have caused loss of life and very considerable property damage. Topography is the chief factor in determining the location of storms and resulting floods. These occur most frequently on the eastern slope of the Front Range. In the mountains farther west precipitation is insufficient to cause floods except during periods of melting snow, in June. In the southwestern part of the State, where precipitation during periods of melting snow is insufficient to cause floods, the severest floods yet experienced resulted from heavy rains in September 1909 and October 1911. In the eastern foothills region, usually below an altitude of about 7,500 feet and extending for a distance of about 50 miles east of the mountains, is a zone subject to rainfalls of great intensity known as cloudbursts. These cloudbursts are of short duration and are confined to very small areas. At times the intensity is so great as to make breathing difficult for those exposed to a storm. The areas of intense rainfall are so small that Weather Bureau precipitation stations have not been located in them. Local residents, being cloudburst conscious, frequently measure the rainfall in receptacles in their yards, and such records constitute the only source of information regarding the intensity. A flood
Knutson, T. R.
Modeling of tropical cyclone activity in a climate context initially focused on simulation of relatively weak tropical storm-like disturbances as resolved by coarse grid (200 km) global models. As computing power has increased, multi-year simulations with global models of grid spacing 20-30 km have become feasible. Increased resolution also allowed for simulation storms of increasing intensity, and some global models generate storms of hurricane strength, depending on their resolution and other factors, although detailed hurricane structure is not simulated realistically. Results from some recent high resolution global model studies are reviewed. An alternative for hurricane simulation is regional downscaling. An early approach was to embed an operational (GFDL) hurricane prediction model within a global model solution, either for 5-day case studies of particular model storm cases, or for "idealized experiments" where an initial vortex is inserted into an idealized environments derived from global model statistics. Using this approach, hurricanes up to category five intensity can be simulated, owing to the model's relatively high resolution (9 km grid) and refined physics. Variants on this approach have been used to provide modeling support for theoretical predictions that greenhouse warming will increase the maximum intensities of hurricanes. These modeling studies also simulate increased hurricane rainfall rates in a warmer climate. The studies do not address hurricane frequency issues, and vertical shear is neglected in the idealized studies. A recent development is the use of regional model dynamical downscaling for extended (e.g., season-length) integrations of hurricane activity. In a study for the Atlantic basin, a non-hydrostatic model with grid spacing of 18km is run without convective parameterization, but with internal spectral nudging toward observed large-scale (basin wavenumbers 0-2) atmospheric conditions from reanalyses. Using this approach, our
Lafourche Parishes remain vulnerable to the impacts of flooding and hurricanes.
Welsh-Rodriguez, C. M.; Nava Bringas, M.; Ochoa Martinez, C.; Local; regional impacts of global change
The Veracruz state lies on the middle of the Gulf of Mexico in Mexican Republic; has a surface of 72815 Km2 represent almost the 4% of Mexico. Due to the complex topography, the rainfall, runoff and the extreme weather the 33% of Mexican water goes trough Veracruz, and every year the presence of tropical depressions, tropical storms and hurricanes impacts on the habitants of Veracruz (7.5 millions). For Veracruz the Sierra Madre is the natural border on the West and on the East the Gulf of Mexico. It is located from 17°10' to 23°38' (N) and between 93° to 99° (W). We will try to get the find out the primary information source for the floods on 2005 and 20010 and correlate with the laws on environment and civil protection for Veracruz. In 1999 a tropical depression more than 200 000 persons and more than 20 died, in 2005 Stan hurricane affected more than a million persons but no one died. In 2010 the effects of hurricane Karl were similar but a few days after the tropical depression Mathew affected 150 000 persons more and 15 people died. The patterns of people habitat in Veracruz since middle of XX century follows the oil industry develop at south east Mexico, so the risk increased as the population density increased, that's a critical reason to concluded that is not only cause - effect issue on Veracruz. So if the extreme events increase as consequence of the climate variability and climate change the vulnerability on this region will not be address in prevention policies, and the future scenario on adaptation will be a deep complex problem to solve from all perspectives.Reported impactst; Extreme events. Data from Veracruz Government.
Knox, Claire Connolly
Thirteen years after Hurricane Andrew struck Homestead, FL, Hurricane Katrina devastated the Gulf Coast of Mississippi, Alabama, and southeastern Louisiana. Along with all its destruction, the term "catastrophic" was redefined. This article extends the literature on these hurricanes by providing a macrolevel analysis of The Governor's Disaster Planning and Response Review Committee Final Report from Hurricane Andrew and three federal after-action reports from Hurricane Katrina, as well as a cursory review of relevant literature. Results provide evidence that previous lessons have not been learned or institutionalized with many recommendations being repeated or modified. This article concludes with a discussion of these lessons, as well as new issues arising during Hurricane Katrina.
Underwood, L. W.; Kalcic, Maria; Fletcher, Rose
Monitoring coastal marshes for persistent flooding and salinity stress is a high priority issue in Louisiana. Remote sensing can identify environmental variables that can be indicators of marsh habitat conditions, and offer timely and relatively accurate information for aiding wetland vegetation management. Monitoring activity accuracy is often limited by mixed pixels which occur when areas represented by the pixel encompasses more than one cover type. Mixtures of marsh grasses and open water in 250m Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) data can impede flood area estimation. Flood mapping of such mixtures requires finer spatial resolution data to better represent the cover type composition within 250m MODIS pixel. Fusion of MODIS and Landsat can improve both spectral and temporal resolution of time series products to resolve rapid changes from forcing mechanisms like hurricane winds and storm surge. For this study, using a method for estimating sub-pixel values from a MODIS time series of a Normalized Difference Water Index (NDWI), using temporal weighting, was implemented to map persistent flooding in Louisiana coastal marshes. Ordinarily NDWI computed from daily 250m MODIS pixels represents a mixture of fragmented marshes and water. Here, sub-pixel NDWI values were derived for MODIS data using Landsat 30-m data. Each MODIS pixel was disaggregated into a mixture of the eight cover types according to the classified image pixels falling inside the MODIS pixel. The Landsat pixel means for each cover type inside a MODIS pixel were computed for the Landsat data preceding the MODIS image in time and for the Landsat data succeeding the MODIS image. The Landsat data were then weighted exponentially according to closeness in date to the MODIS data. The reconstructed MODIS data were produced by summing the product of fractional cover type with estimated NDWI values within each cover type. A new daily time series was produced using both the reconstructed 250