Determining urban flood vulnerability using an indicator-based approach and HAZUS-MH

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Abstract Summary
With an increase in urbanization and climate change, occurrences of disasters are becoming more frequent; thus contributing to population and building damages. India has the second highest population in the world, and fewer resources to cope up; making the country exposed to disasters (World Bank, 2018). Guwahati, the gateway to north-east Indian states, is situated in flood-prone Brahmaputra valley where more than 40% of its land is affected (AIDMI, 2014; Goswami, 2001). Among various disasters, urban flood (UF) is gaining importance fast in the city due to its recurrence on an annual basis. Lack of an urban drainage network has added to the suffering of the urban poor comprising 23% of the population (Sarmah & Das, 2018a). Thirty percent of buildings here are non-engineered and several modern buildings are built without flood compliance (Sarmah & Das, 2018b). Considering that existing population and buildings are at risk, this research aims to develop a comprehensive UF vulnerability index (UFVI) as a combination of two indices — human vulnerability index (HVI) and building vulnerability index (BVI). Modified on various concepts of vulnerability assessment of population and buildings for hazards in the developing world (Jain et al., 2010; UNDP, 2006), the UFVI was proposed considering inherent hardships pertinent exclusively to UF. This context was determined from a survey of 31 flood-prone wards of Guwahati city, carried out during monsoon for the population and post-monsoon for the buildings. The relevance of the HVI was checked by local residents chosen as survey respondents and the BVI was conducted based on the concept of rapid visual screening (RVS) of buildings; samples were chosen through the stratified random procedure. Here seven HV and sixteen BV parameters were taken into account; collated from various published literature. The HVI and BVI are expected to stratify the population and buildings based on their susceptibility during UF. These indices are combined in HAZUS-MH platform to obtain the UFVI for selected wards. This research identifies lacuna in the meager progress made in current practices for UF management and recommends to make further efforts to improve the situation for the population and buildings. Apart from adding to emergency measures, the detailed vulnerability map obtained contributes to long-term actions for improving the resilience of the existing population and buildings of the city against UF.
Abstract ID :
ISO470
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Ph.D. Student
,
Indian Institute of Technology Kharagpur
Assistant Professor
,
Indian Institute of Technology Kharagpur

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