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Vulnerability is defined as the degree of loss resulting from the hazard impact on buildings. Recent studies have focused on evaluating vulnerability to dynamic flooding using proxies from case studies and based on empirical ex-post approaches. However, the transferability to other case studies and, therefore, the ability of such models to actually predict future losses is limited. To overcome this gap, the authors present a beta model based on loss data from the European Alps, which clearly shows that a single vulnerability function is sufficient to predict losses resulting from different types of torrential hazards and to provide probabilities of destruction under specific scenarios.
The model presented considers the probability of no loss and the complete destruction of affected buildings. Due to its predictive power, the approach may be applied to operational risk management and also in areas where empirical data is currently not available. The latter is of particular importance; due to climate and socioeconomic changes, the impacts of mountain floods are expected in areas with limited to no records of such previous events. Knowledge of probabilities supports decision making and the prioritization of resources for the construction and implementation of protection measures. Thus, the inclusion of such predictions into future planning processes will further enhance the reliability of vulnerability assessments.
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