Evaluation of rock falls in an urban area: the case of Boğaziçi (Erzincan/Turkey)
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Disasters caused by events such as earthquake, flooding, rock falls, landslides are often encountered. However, generally, the reasons for the destructive and devastating effects of these nature events are that settlement locations were chosen without site investigation studies, or that available studies were inadequate. Such inadequacies in the field are related to inappropriate settlement location and the resulting damage caused by rock falls. This study evaluated rockfall risk in a settlement that developed in a similar manner. The study was carried out in Boğaziçi village of Kemah (Erzincan/Turkey), which is located in a very important tectonic zone. The study site is located on the lower sections of an area with very steep cliffs and 50–75° slopes. This cliff, which is the source of rockfalls, has a slope dip of approximately 90°. The cliff comprises 25–30 m high, fractured and cracked basaltic volcanic mass. To determine block size in the study area, scanline survey measurements and block size measurements were performed on blocks that loosened and fell from the cliff face. It was found that block sizes reached 6 m3. Rockfall analyses were performed along the selected profiles using the Rockfall V.4.0 software. Kinetic energy, bounce height, horizontal location of rock end-points, and velocity of the rocks along each section were evaluated separately for each profile. This data were used to produce distribution maps for each profile and the settlement was evaluated in terms of rockfall risk. The results indicate that the study area was at risk of future rockfalls and that it would be appropriate to relocate one part of the settlement.
KeywordsRockfall Boğaziçi Zonation map Natural hazard Hazard assessment
The author is also very grateful for the significant and constructive comments of the anonymous reviewers.
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