Natural Disasters - Moving Toward Improved Resilience

Single Abstract

343548 - Is Peak Wind Speed the Most Effective Predictor of Tornado-Induced Wind Damage: Evaluation of Alternative Tornado Intensity Measures as Damage Predictors from Recent Tornadoes

Saturday, April 21
8:00 AM - 9:30 AM
Location: 201A

The fragility of structures to extreme wind events is almost exclusively quantified using the maximum gust wind speed that the structure experiences to quantify the probability the structure meets or exceeds a given damage state. The validity of this approach is questionable for tornadoes, where key components of the tornado-induced loads, such as the presence of vertical wind velocity vector, debris cloud, atmospheric pressure deficit, and duration of wind speeds, are strongly a function of the distance from the tornado center. Thus a structure located near the core of a tornado might experience the same maximum wind speed as a building located in the outer region of a more intense tornado, and yet experience vastly different structural loads.
This study uses detailed damage observations and numerical tornado wind field models from recent tornadoes to evaluate the efficiency of alternative measures of tornado intensity at quantifying the tornado fragility of light woodframe structures. The tornado datasets used in the study include 718 structures damaged in the 2015 Garland-Rowlett, TX tornado, 1,519 in the 2013 Moore, OK tornado and 1,251 in the 2011 Joplin, MO tornado. The alternative intensity measures include distance from the tornado center, duration of wind speeds above certain intensity levels, and total kinetic energy imparted to the structure. The efficiency of the various intensity measures at predicting the damage state is quantified using Receiver Operating Characteristic (ROC) analysis.
The outcomes of this study have important implications to the engineering community as fragility functions are fundamental tools in both risk assessment and performance-based engineering design. The use of more efficient intensity measures in developing the fragility functions can potentially reduce the uncertainty in such analyses and lead to more accurate risk assessments and more efficient tornado-resilient structural designs.

David B. Roueche

Assistant Professor
Auburn University

Dr. David Roueche is an Assistant Professor of Civil Engineering at Auburn University, where he researches ways of improving the performance of low-rise buildings under extreme wind loads, including hurricanes and tornadoes. David’s research experience includes large-scale experimental testing, numerical simulations and post-disaster field investigations. He has performed extensive field research in the aftermath of some of the strongest wind events in recent history, including the 2011 tornadoes in Tuscaloosa, AL and Joplin, MO, the 2015 tornado in Garland, TX, and the major hurricanes of 2017 – Harvey, Irma and Maria. He is using the data captured from these events to develop better models of extreme wind loads and structural response, and ultimately strengthen the resilience of our communities to future events. David serves as an Associate Member on the ASCE/SEI Standard for Estimating Wind Speeds in Tornadoes and Other Windstorms.
David received his Ph.D. in Structural Engineering from the University of Florida in 2016, and B.S. in Civil Engineering from the University of Florida in 2011. He was awarded an NSF Graduate Research Fellowship in 2013. He also received a B.S. in Engineering Physics from Jacksonville University.

Presentation(s):

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Franklin Lombardo

Assistant Professor
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

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343548 - Is Peak Wind Speed the Most Effective Predictor of Tornado-Induced Wind Damage: Evaluation of Alternative Tornado Intensity Measures as Damage Predictors from Recent Tornadoes



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