Vulnerability of industrial plants to flood-induced natechs: A Bayesian network approach

N. Khakzad, Pieter van Gelder

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

43 Citations (Scopus)
51 Downloads (Pure)


In the context of natural-technological (natech) accidents, flood-induced damage of industrial plants have received relatively less attention mainly due to the scarcity of such accidents compared to those triggered by earthquakes, high winds, and lightnings. The large amount of oil spillage due to floods triggered by the Hurricanes Katrina and Rita in 2005 in the U.S. demonstrated the potential of floods in causing catastrophic natechs. In the present study, we have developed a methodology based on physical reliability models and Bayesian network so as to assess the fragility (probability of failure) of industrial plants to floods. The application of the methodology has been demonstrated for petroleum storage tanks where flotation, shell buckling, and sliding are considered as the prevailing failure modes. Due to scarcity of empirical data and high-resolution field observations prevailing in natechs, the developed methodology can effectively be applied to a wide variety of natechs in industrial plants as long as limit state equations of respective failure modes can reasonably be developed.
Original languageEnglish
JournalReliability Engineering & System Safety
Publication statusPublished - 2017


  • Floods
  • Natech accidents
  • Petroleum storage tank
  • Physical reliability models
  • Bayesian network


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