The alerting system for hydrogeological hazard in Lombardy Region, northern Italy: rainfall thresholds triggering debris-flows and "equivalent rainfall" method
A. Cucchi1, I. Q. Valsecchi1, M. Alberti1, P. Fassi1, M. Molari2, and G. Mannucci21Lombardia Informatica, Regione Lombardia, Centro Funzionale Monitoraggio Rischi, Sala Operativa di Protezione Civile, via Rosellini 17, 20124 Milano, Italy 2Regione Lombardia, D. G. Sicurezza, Protezione Civile e Immigrazione, U. O. Protezione Civile, Struttura Gestione emergenze, Piazza Città di Lombardia 1, 20124 Milano, Italy
Received: 04 Dec 2014 – Accepted for review: 08 Dec 2014 – Discussion started: 08 Jan 2015
Abstract. The Functional Centre (CFMR) of the Civil Protection of the Lombardy Region, North Italy, has the main task of monitoring and alerting, particularly with respect to natural hazards. The procedure of early warning for hydrogeological hazard is based on a comparison of two quantities: thresholds and rainfall, both referred to a defined area and an exact time interval.
The CFMR studied 52 landslide events (1987–2003) in Medium-Low Valtellina and derived a model of the critical detachment rainfall, in function of the local slope and the Curve Number CN (an empirical parameter related with the land cover and the hydrological conditions of the soil): it's physically consistent and allows a geographically targeted alerting. Moreover, rainfall thresholds were associated with a typical probability of exceedance.
The processing of rainfall data is carried out through the "equivalent rainfall" method, that allows to take into account the antecedent moisture condition of the soil: in fact the hazard is substantially greater when the soil is near to saturation. The method was developed from the CN method and considers the local CN and the observed rainfall of the previous 5 days. The obtained value for the local equivalent rainfall, that combines rainfall (observed and forecasted) and local soil characteristics, is a better parameter for the evaluation of the hydrogeological hazard.
The comparison between equivalent rainfall and thresholds allows to estimate the local hydrogeological hazard, displayed through hazard maps, and consequently to provide a reliable alerting activity (even localized to limited portions of the region).
Cucchi, A., Valsecchi, I. Q., Alberti, M., Fassi, P., Molari, M., and Mannucci, G.: The alerting system for hydrogeological hazard in Lombardy Region, northern Italy: rainfall thresholds triggering debris-flows and "equivalent rainfall" method, Nat. Hazards Earth Syst. Sci. Discuss., 3, 269-290, doi:10.5194/nhessd-3-269-2015, 2015.