Tsunami hazard and building damage assessment in Thailand using numerical model and fragility curves

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Assessing the hazard and damage of a potential tsunami is an ongoing challenge in tsunami research. This study begins by simulating tsunami hazards using historical events. A tsunami propagation model is used to obtain the estimated maximum tsunami height along the west coast of Thailand for a rough return period, and rupture locations that have the potential to generate catastrophic tsunamis in Thailand for a specific return period are proposed. A tsunami inundation model is then performed to quantify each building's maximum inundation depth, using high-resolution satellite images to extract each building's location for the areas of interest located in southern Thailand. Nam Khem village and Patong beach are selected as study areas to represent village communities and tourist attractions, respectively. The model results are then used to obtain the numbers of exposed inhabitants and buildings for each earthquake return period. The developed tsunami fragility curves are applied to these figures to determine the number of potentially damaged buildings. The analysis suggests that the propagation model can be used to obtain rough estimations because it provided results similar to those of the inundation model. However, material type must be considered when fragility curves are used in a different country (i.e. reinforced concrete buildings in Thailand from the 2004 tsunami and wooden houses in Japan from the 2011 East Japan tsunami).

Original languageEnglish
Article number1250028
JournalJournal of Earthquake and Tsunami
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 2013 Dec


  • damage assessment
  • fragility curve
  • Potential tsunamis
  • probabilistic tsunami hazard analysis
  • tsunami simulation


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