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Short communication: A model to predict flood loss in mountain areas

Fuchs, Sven, Heiser, Micha, Schlögl, Matthias, Zischg, Andreas, Papathoma-Köhle, Maria, Keiler, Margreth
Environmental modelling & software 2019 v.117 pp. 176-180
buildings, case studies, climate change, models, risk, risk analysis, Europe
Because effects of climate change and an increase in elements at risk, mountain hazard loss increased throughout Europe. Yet, factors influencing loss, i.e. vulnerability, have gained less attention to date. Vulnerability is defined as the degree of loss resulting from the hazard impact on buildings. Recent studies have focused on evaluating vulnerability to dynamic flooding using proxies from case studies and based on empirical ex-post approaches. However, the transferability to other case studies and, therefore, the ability of such models to actually predict future losses is limited. To overcome this gap, we present a beta model based on loss data from the European Alps, which clearly shows that a single vulnerability function is sufficient to predict losses resulting from different types of torrential hazards and to provide probabilities of destruction under specific scenarios. As a result, the curves are transferable and may significantly increase the predictive power of risk analyses.