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Natural Hazards and Earth System Sciences An interactive open-access journal of the European Geosciences Union
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Volume 14, issue 12 | Copyright
Nat. Hazards Earth Syst. Sci., 14, 3231-3241, 2014
© Author(s) 2014. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.

Research article 04 Dec 2014

Research article | 04 Dec 2014

Developing fragility functions for the areas affected by the 2009 Samoa earthquake and tsunami

H. Gokon1, S. Koshimura2, K. Imai2, M. Matsuoka3, Y. Namegaya4, and Y. Nishimura5 H. Gokon et al.
  • 1Graduate School of Engineering, Tohoku University, Sendai, Japan
  • 2International Research Institute of Disaster Science, Tohoku University, Sendai, Japan
  • 3Interdisciplinary Graduate School of Science and Engineering, Tokyo Institute of Technology, Yokohama, Japan
  • 4Geological Survey of Japan, National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology, Tsukuba, Japan
  • 5Institute of Seismology and Volcanology, Graduate School of Science, School of Science, Hokkaido University, Sapporo, Japan

Abstract. Fragility functions in terms of flow depth, flow velocity and hydrodynamic force are developed to evaluate structural vulnerability in the areas affected by the 2009 Samoa earthquake and tsunami. First, numerical simulations of tsunami propagation and inundation are conducted to reproduce the features of tsunami inundation. To validate the results, flow depths measured in field surveys and waveforms measured by Deep-ocean Assessment and Reporting of Tsunamis (DART) gauges are utilized. Next, building damage is investigated by visually interpreting changes between pre- and post-tsunami high-resolution satellite images. Finally, the data related to tsunami features and building damage are integrated using Geographic Information System (GIS), and tsunami fragility functions are developed based on the statistical analyses. From the developed fragility functions, we quantitatively understood the vulnerability of a coastal region in American Samoa characterized by steep terrains and ria coasts.

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