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Geosciences 2018, 8(9), 341; https://doi.org/10.3390/geosciences8090341

Stability of Individuals during Urban Inundations: What Should We Learn from Field Observations?

1
School of Civil Engineering, The University of Queensland, Brisbane QLD 4072, Australia
2
School of Chemistry, Physics, Mechanical Engineering, Energy and Process Engineering, Queensland University of Technology, Brisbane QLD 2001, Australia
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 25 July 2018 / Revised: 5 September 2018 / Accepted: 7 September 2018 / Published: 10 September 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue River, Urban, and Coastal Flood Risk)
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Abstract

The flooding of urbanized areas constitutes a major hazard to populations and infrastructure. Flood flows during urban inundations have been studied only recently and the real-life impact of fluid flows on individuals is not well understood. The stability of individuals in floodwaters is re-assessed based upon the re-analysis of detailed field measurements during a major flood event. The results emphasized that hydrodynamic instabilities, linked to local topographic effects and debris, constitute major real-world hazards. A comparison between a number of flow conditions deemed unsafe for individuals, along with guidelines, suggests that many recommendations are over-optimistic and unsafe in real floodwaters and natural disasters. A series of more conservative guidelines is proposed, particularity relevant to flood events. View Full-Text
Keywords: urban inundation; Human body stability; incipient velocity; turbulence; field observations; flood events urban inundation; Human body stability; incipient velocity; turbulence; field observations; flood events
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Chanson, H.; Brown, R. Stability of Individuals during Urban Inundations: What Should We Learn from Field Observations? Geosciences 2018, 8, 341.

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