Probabilistic hazard modelling of rain-triggered lahars

Stuart R. Mead*, Christina R. Magill

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

13 Citations (Scopus)
11 Downloads (Pure)


Probabilistic quantification of lahar hazard is an important component of lahar risk assessment and mitigation. Here we propose a new approach to probabilistic lahar hazard assessment through coupling a lahar susceptibility model with a shallow-layer lahar flow model. Initial lahar volumes and their probabilities are quantified using the lahar susceptibility model which establishes a relationship between the volume of mobilised sediment and exceedance probabilities from rainfall intensity-frequency-duration curves. Rainfall-triggered lahar hazard zones can then be delineated probabilistically by using the mobilised volumes as an input into lahar flow models. While the applicability of this model is limited to rain-triggered lahars, this approach is able to reduce the reliance on historic and empirical estimates of lahar hazard and creates an opportunity for the generation of purely quantitative probabilistic lahar hazard maps. The new approach is demonstrated through the generation of probabilistic hazard maps for lahars originating from the Mangatoetoenui Glacier, Ruapehu volcano, New Zealand.

Original languageEnglish
Article number8
Pages (from-to)1-7
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Applied Volcanology
Publication statusPublished - 2017

Bibliographical note

Copyright the Author(s) 2017. Version archived for private and non-commercial use with the permission of the author/s and according to publisher conditions. For further rights please contact the publisher.


  • Probabilistic lahar hazard
  • Susceptibility
  • Rain-triggered lahar
  • Numerical modelling


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