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GIS characterization of spatially distributed lifeline damage

January 1, 1999

This paper describes the visualization of spatially distributed water pipeline damage following an earthquake using geographical information systems (GIS). Pipeline damage is expressed as a repair rate (RR). Repair rate contours are developed with GIS by dividing the study area into grid cells (n ?? n), determining the number of particular pipeline repairs in each grid cell, and dividing the number of repairs by the length of that pipeline in each cell area. The resulting contour plot is a two-dimensional visualization of point source damage. High damage zones are defined herein as areas with an RR value greater than the mean RR for the entire study area of interest. A hyperbolic relationship between visual display of high pipeline damage zones and grid size, n, was developed. The relationship is expressed in terms of two dimensionless parameters, threshold area coverage (TAC) and dimensionless grid size (DGS). The relationship is valid over a wide range of different map scales spanning approximately 1,200 km2 for the largest portion of the Los Angeles water distribution system to 1 km2 for the Marina in San Francisco. This relationship can aid GIS users to get sufficiently refined, but easily visualized, maps of damage patterns.

Citation Information

Publication Year 1999
Title GIS characterization of spatially distributed lifeline damage
Authors Selcuk Toprak, Thomas O'Rourke, Ilker Tutuncu
Publication Type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Series Title Technical Council on Lifeline Earthquake Engineering Monograph
Index ID 70021501
Record Source USGS Publications Warehouse