Weihua Zhu, Kai Liu, Ming Wang, Elco E. Koks. Seismic Risk Assessment of the Railway Network of China's Mainland[J]. International Journal of Disaster Risk Science, 2020, 11(4): 452-465. doi: 10.1007/s13753-020-00292-9
Citation: Weihua Zhu, Kai Liu, Ming Wang, Elco E. Koks. Seismic Risk Assessment of the Railway Network of China's Mainland[J]. International Journal of Disaster Risk Science, 2020, 11(4): 452-465. doi: 10.1007/s13753-020-00292-9

Seismic Risk Assessment of the Railway Network of China's Mainland

doi: 10.1007/s13753-020-00292-9

The research for this article was supported by the National Key Research and Development Plan (2018YFC1508802), National Natural Science Foundation of China (41771538), and China Scholarship Council (CSC) during a visit of the first author (File No. 20190604188) to Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam. The financial support is highly appreciated.

  • Available Online: 2021-04-26
  • Earthquakes pose a great risk to railway systems and services around the world. In China alone, earthquakes caused 88 rail service disruptions between 2012 and 2019. Here, we present a first-of-its-kind methodology to analyze the seismic risk of a railway system using an empirically derived train service fragility curve. We demonstrate our methodology using the Chinese railway system. In doing so, we generate a set of stochastic earthquake scenarios for China based on a national-scale seismicity model. Using disruption records, we construct an empirically grounded fragility curve that relates the failure probability of train services to peak ground acceleration. By combining the simulated earthquakes, the fragility curve, and empirical train flow data from 2016, we quantitatively assess the seismic impact and the risk faced by the Chinese railway system. The maximum train trip loss could reach 2400 trips in response to a single seismic event, accounting for 34% of the national daily train trips. Due to the spatially uneven daily train flow and seismicity distribution, the seismic impact on the railway system in different seismic zones is highly heterogeneous and does not always increase when the hazard intensity increases. More specifically, the results show that the railway lines located in the Qinghai-Tibet and Xinjiang seismic zones exhibit the highest risk. The generated impact curves and the risk map provide a basis for railway planning and risk management decisions.
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