Derivation of Seismic Risk Function for Critical Infrastructures

Alon Urlainis, Igal M Shohet

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionpeer-review


Critical infrastructures importance to the society and the economy is constantly rising due to the increasing dependency of the private and public sector on the services they provide. Critical infrastructures are complex and interdependent systems; thus, damage to one component in the system can lead to a total failure of the CI and consequently lead to disruptions of other CIs. Therefore, there is an utmost importance to ensure reliable performance of critical infrastructures on a continuous basis and particularly after the occurrence of earthquakes. With the understanding that it is unfeasible (economically or physically) to ensure full robustness of the system for all possible scenarios, decision makers are required to plan the upgrade of the systems accordingly to the most efficient strategies and corresponding to the economic limitations.
In this study, a methodology is developed to appraise the risk that CIs are exposed in case of earthquakes and to act as a decision support tool for decision makers to manage efficiently the courses of action to mitigate this risk. In this methodology, Probabilistic Seismic Hazard Analysis (PSHA) approach is used in order to reflect a variety of possible seismic scenarios and overcome the uncertainties regarding to the timing, the location, and the magnitude of an earthquake. The seismic vulnerability of the component is evaluated by fragility curves and Fault-Tree-Analysis.
The seismic risk function of the system is derived by an aggregation of the occurrence probabilities of the earthquake, seismic vulnerability of the different components, and the expected consequences. The derived risk function expresses the expected risk of the system for a given ground motion intensities that reflect different possible earthquake scenarios. Using this methodology, different mitigation strategies can be examined and prioritized accordingly to their contribution to the risk reduction and relatively to each strategy cost.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings of Creative Construction Conference, 2016
Number of pages7
StatePublished - 2016


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