Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Evacuation No Option For Flood In Netherland's Most Populous Area

Date:
December 27, 2006
Source:
Delft University of Technology
Summary:
A flood in the southern Randstad will claim thousands of victims. And evacuating the area would only save precious few lives, TU Delft researcher Bas Jonkman states in the latest edition of Delft Outlook (Delft Integraal).

Red dots: casualties per district; blue areas: flood depth in metres.
Credit: Image courtesy of Delft University of Technology

A flood in the southern Randstad will claim thousands of victims. And evacuating the area would only save precious few lives, TU Delft researcher Bas Jonkman states in the latest edition of Delft Outlook (Delft Integraal).

Related Articles


If the seawalls at Den Haag and Ter Heijde are breached and the fast-flowing seawater floods the polder land behind the dikes, there will be more than 4,000 casualties, according to a new calculation method devised by TU Delft PhD candidate Bas Jonkman.

Jonkman's method also reveals that evacuating this area would only save at most 600 lives. "It's possible to predict a North Sea storm a day or two in advance," Jonkman says. 'But before an evacuation could begin, the government would deliberate and everyone would have to be warned. Then, people would pack up their belongings. All this would cost a lot of time."

However, in the less densely populated polder lands along the rivers, if people were warned well enough in advance of an impending flood, Jonkman's model predicts that an evacuation would indeed save many lives. For the densely populated polders bordering the coastline, Jonkman says it would be more effective for example to build stronger and higher dikes, as this would reduce the likelihood of a flood.

Until now, various rules of thumb have been used to estimate the number of possible casualties resulting from a flood. Jonkman's model for estimating casualties is more precise. It consists of various parts, including a model that simulates an evacuation and thereby determines how many people would still be in the area if the dike were breached. Determining how many of these people would survive is dependent on how fast the water flows, how fast the water rises and how deep the water is. To make such predictions, Jonkman uses a model that was developed by TU Delft and the research institute WL Delft Hydraulics. Jonkman combined the models to simulate the evacuation and the course of the flood.

The majority of Jonkman's doctoral research was devoted to devising the so-called 'victim functions'. 'If the water is four meters deep, then 20 percent of the people in that area would not survive', is an example of how this function works. For the victim functions, Jonkman based his data on the calamitous flood in the Netherlands in 1953 and other such disasters. To determine if his model's findings were realistic, Jonkman also processed data from the floods caused by Hurricane Katrina in August 2005, when the dikes protecting New Orleans were breached. Jonkman's model calculated 2,000 victims for that disaster – a figure that Jonkman is pleased with: "This is of the same order of magnitude as the 1,100 bodies that have actually been recovered so far."

An in-depth article about this research subject has been published in the latest edition of Delft Integraal / Delft Outlook, the independent science magazine of TU Delft. (http://www.delftintegraal.tudelft.nl).


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Delft University of Technology. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Delft University of Technology. "Evacuation No Option For Flood In Netherland's Most Populous Area." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 27 December 2006. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2006/12/061207160203.htm>.
Delft University of Technology. (2006, December 27). Evacuation No Option For Flood In Netherland's Most Populous Area. ScienceDaily. Retrieved April 20, 2015 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2006/12/061207160203.htm
Delft University of Technology. "Evacuation No Option For Flood In Netherland's Most Populous Area." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2006/12/061207160203.htm (accessed April 20, 2015).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Earth & Climate News

Monday, April 20, 2015

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Deepwater And Dolphins: The Oil Spill's Impact 5 Years On

Deepwater And Dolphins: The Oil Spill's Impact 5 Years On

Newsy (Apr. 20, 2015) Five years on, the possible environmental impact of the Deepwater Horizon spill includes a sustained die-off of bottlenose dolphins, among others. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Pee-Power Toilet to Light Up Disaster Zones

Pee-Power Toilet to Light Up Disaster Zones

Reuters - Innovations Video Online (Apr. 20, 2015) Students and staff are being asked to use a prototype urinal to &apos;donate&apos; urine to fuel microbial fuel cell (MFC) stacks that generate electricity to power lighting. The developers hope the pee-power technology will light toilet cubicles in refugee camps, where women are often at risk of assault in poorly lit sanitation areas. Matthew Stock reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Raw: Undersea Quake Shakes Taiwan

Raw: Undersea Quake Shakes Taiwan

AP (Apr. 20, 2015) A strong undersea earthquake struck between Taiwan and southern Japan on Monday, sparking a house fire that killed a person outside of Taiwan&apos;s capital. (April 20) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Five Years Later, the BP Oil Spill Is Still Taking Its Toll

Five Years Later, the BP Oil Spill Is Still Taking Its Toll

AFP (Apr. 20, 2015) On April 20, 2010, an explosion and fire on the Deepwater Horizon rig in the Gulf of Mexico started the biggest oil spill in US history. BP recently reported the Gulf is recovering well, but scientists paint a different picture. Duration: 02:36 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Plants & Animals

Earth & Climate

Fossils & Ruins

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins