PROGRESS IN GEOGRAPHY ›› 2016, Vol. 35 ›› Issue (2): 137-147.doi: 10.18306/dlkxjz.2016.02.001

• Invited Paper •     Next Articles

Theory and method of risk assessment and risk management of debris flows and flash floods

Peng CUI1,3(), Qiang ZOU2   

  1. 1. Key Laboratory of Mountain Hazards and Earth Surface Process/Institute of Mountain Hazards and Environment, CAS, Chengdu 610041, China
    2. School of Environmental and Resource, Southwest University of Science and Technology, Mianyang 621010, Sichuan, China
    3. Center for Excellence in Tibetan Plateau Earth Sciences, CAS, Beijing 100101, China
  • Received:2015-12-01 Accepted:2016-01-01 Online:2016-02-10 Published:2016-02-10
  • Supported by:
    Key Project of International Cooperation and Exchanges NSFC, No.41520104002;Key Research Program of the Chinese Academy of Sciences, No.KZZD-EW-05-01;Science and Technology Project of Sichuan Province, No.2014SZ0163


Debris flows and flash floods are widely distributed mountain hazards in China. Effective hazard mitigation and prevention require understanding of hazards formation mechanisms and their potential risks. This article elaborates on the formation mechanism, risk analysis, and risk management of debris flows and flash floods. Surface runoff and material supply volume incensement, hazard scale amplification due to outburst of multiple channel blockages and bed erosion as hazard formation mechanism are discussed. Base on the dynamic process of debris flows and flash floods as well as vulnerability assessment of elements at risk, methods of risk assessment and mapping are proposed. Comprehensive engineering and non-engineering measures for hazards control shall be guided by the result of risk analysis that identifies the hazardous level of debris flows and flash floods and incorporates the vulnerability of different elements at risk. Finally, this article discusses strategies when facing risk of these hazards and puts forward a risk management system that involves the participation of local communities.

Key words: debris flow, flash flood, hazard analysis, vulnerability, risk assessment, risk management, dynamic process