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Open AccessArticle

Flood Hazard Assessment in Data-Scarce Watersheds Using Model Coupling, Event Sampling, and Survey Data

1
Department of Territorial Planning, Faculty of Environmental Sciences and EULA-Centre, Universidad de Concepción, 4070386 Concepción, Chile
2
Department of Agricultural and Biological Engineering, University of Illinois, 1304 West Pennsylvania Avenue, Urbana, IL 61801, USA
3
Water and Aquatic Resources Research Group (GIRHA), Universidad Regional Amazónica Ikiam, 150101 Tena, Ecuador
4
Department of Biological & Agricultural Engineering, Texas A&M University, TX 77843, USA
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Water 2020, 12(10), 2768; https://doi.org/10.3390/w12102768
Received: 8 July 2020 / Revised: 24 September 2020 / Accepted: 1 October 2020 / Published: 4 October 2020
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Flash Flood Forecasting)
The application of hydrologic and hydrodynamic models in flash flood hazard assessment is mainly limited by the availability of robust monitoring systems and long-term hydro-meteorological observations. Nevertheless, several studies have demonstrated that coupled modeling approaches based on event sampling (short-term observations) may cope with the lack of observed input data. This study evaluated the use of storm events and flood-survey reports to develop and validate a modeling framework for flash flood hazard assessment in data-scarce watersheds. Specifically, we coupled the hydrologic modeling system (HEC-HMS) and the Nays2Dflood hydrodynamic solver to simulate the system response to several storm events including one, equivalent in magnitude to a 500-year event, that flooded the City of Tena (Ecuador) on 2 September, 2017. Results from the coupled approach showed satisfactory model performance in simulating streamflow and water depths (0.40 ≤ Nash-Sutcliffe coefficient ≤ 0.95; −3.67% ≤ Percent Bias ≤ 23.4%) in six of the eight evaluated events, and a good agreement between simulated and surveyed flooded areas (Fit Index = 0.8) after the 500-year storm. The proposed methodology can be used by modelers and decision-makers for flood impact assessment in data-scarce watersheds and as a starting point for the establishment of flood forecasting systems to lessen the impacts of flood events at the local scale. View Full-Text
Keywords: flood hazard assessment; data scarcity; model coupling; event sampling; survey data flood hazard assessment; data scarcity; model coupling; event sampling; survey data
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MDPI and ACS Style

Hurtado-Pidal, J.; Acero Triana, J.S.; Espitia-Sarmiento, E.; Jarrín-Pérez, F. Flood Hazard Assessment in Data-Scarce Watersheds Using Model Coupling, Event Sampling, and Survey Data. Water 2020, 12, 2768.

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