Development of flood mitigation strategies for Australian residential buildings

Building design Architecture Housing Buildings Disasters Flood mitigation Australia

Globally floods cause widespread damage and loss of life and property. An analysis of global statistics conducted by Jonkman (2005) showed that floods (including coastal flooding) caused 175,000 fatalities and affected more than 2.2 billion people between 1975 and 2002. In Australia, floods cause more damage on an average annual basis than any other national disaster (HNFMSC, 2006). The fundamental causes of this severity of damage and the key factors contributing to flood risk, in general, are the vulnerable buildings constructed within floodplains and land-use planning.

The Bushfire and Natural Hazards Cooperative Research Centre project entitled Cost-effective mitigation strategy development for flood-prone buildings (BNHCRC, 2016) is examining opportunities for reducing the vulnerability of new and existing Australian residential buildings. It addresses the need for an evidence base to inform decision-making on the mitigation of the flood risk posed by the most vulnerable Australian building types. This project investigates methods for upgrading existing residential building stock in floodplains to increase their resilience to future flood events. The project also aims to make assessments of the reduction in damage losses that will result from the implementation of a range of mitigation measures developed by the project.

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