Articles | Volume 16, issue 12
Research article
21 Dec 2016
Research article |  | 21 Dec 2016

Flood damage: a model for consistent, complete and multipurpose scenarios

Scira Menoni, Daniela Molinari, Francesco Ballio, Guido Minucci, Ouejdane Mejri, Funda Atun, Nicola Berni, and Claudia Pandolfo

Abstract. Effective flood risk mitigation requires the impacts of flood events to be much better and more reliably known than is currently the case. Available post-flood damage assessments usually supply only a partial vision of the consequences of the floods as they typically respond to the specific needs of a particular stakeholder. Consequently, they generally focus (i) on particular items at risk, (ii) on a certain time window after the occurrence of the flood, (iii) on a specific scale of analysis or (iv) on the analysis of damage only, without an investigation of damage mechanisms and root causes.

This paper responds to the necessity of a more integrated interpretation of flood events as the base to address the variety of needs arising after a disaster. In particular, a model is supplied to develop multipurpose complete event scenarios. The model organizes available information after the event according to five logical axes. This way post-flood damage assessments can be developed that (i) are multisectoral, (ii) consider physical as well as functional and systemic damage, (iii) address the spatial scales that are relevant for the event at stake depending on the type of damage that has to be analyzed, i.e., direct, functional and systemic, (iv) consider the temporal evolution of damage and finally (v) allow damage mechanisms and root causes to be understood. All the above features are key for the multi-usability of resulting flood scenarios.

The model allows, on the one hand, the rationalization of efforts currently implemented in ex post damage assessments, also with the objective of better programming financial resources that will be needed for these types of events in the future. On the other hand, integrated interpretations of flood events are fundamental to adapting and optimizing flood mitigation strategies on the basis of thorough forensic investigation of each event, as corroborated by the implementation of the model in a case study.

Short summary
This paper presents a model to develop multipurpose complete event scenarios, which address all the needs that arise after a disaster. In detail, such scenarios (i) are multisectoral, (ii) address the spatial scales relevant for the event at stake, (iii) consider the temporal evolution of damage and (iv) allow damage mechanisms to be understood. The model allows flood mitigation strategies to be optimized, as proved by its use in a case study.
Final-revised paper