Articles | Volume 3, issue 1/2
30 Apr 2003
30 Apr 2003

The use of historical data for the characterisation of multiple damaging hydrogeological events

O. Petrucci and M. Polemio

Abstract. Landslides, floods and secondary floods (hereinafter called phenomena) triggered by rainfall and causing extensive damage are reviewed in this paper. Damaging Hydrogeological Events (DHEs) are defined as the occurrence of one or more simultaneous aforementioned phenomena. A method for the characterisation of DHEs based upon historic data is proposed. The method is aimed at assessing DHE-related hazard in terms of recurrence, severity, damage, and extent of the affected area. Using GIS, the DHEs historical and climatic data collection, the geomorphological and hydrogeological characterisation of the hit areas, the characterisation of induced damage, the evaluation of triggering rainfall return period and critical duration of each DHE were carried out.

The approach was applied to a test site in Southern Italy (Calabria) for validation purposes. A database was set up including data from 24 events which have occurred during an 80-year period. The spatial distribution of phenomena was analysed together with the return period of cumulative rainfall. The trend of the occurred phenomena was also compared with the climatic trend. Four main types of Damaging Hydrogeological Events were identified in the study area.