Assessment and Zoning of Flash Flood Risks based on MFFPI Model (Case Study: Islamabad Basin)

Document Type : Applied Article


Assistant Professor, Payame Noor University


An immediate flood is a rapid flood that is caused by heavy rainfall or sudden release of water over a short period of time while water flowing over the earth (Huang et al., 2013, p. 325). Great floods have the same consequences, hydrogeomorphological effects (Martin et al., 2012, 49), biological effects (Richter et al., 2000, 1469), and socioeconomic effects (Mirz, 2007, 233). This means creating high financial costs and reducing socioeconomic development (Moses et al., 2010, 112). Flash floods are causing severe material damage, human casualties and extreme erosion (Farhan and Ayid, 2017, 718). Although flooding is only heavy rainfall, the hydrological response varies depending on the slope physiognomic features, soil texture, ground cover, rock permeability, and range curvature (Tinco et al., 2018,593). In order to reduce the risk of flash flood, it is necessary to identify and classify areas with high flood hazard potential (Minya, 2013, p. 345). The Islamabad basin is located in the Zagros zone, and the lithologic and geological conditions have caused the geomorphologic features of the Jurassic mountains and the lagging mountains around the syncline plain of Islamabad. This basin is sometimes faced with the risk of flood and river floods due to the severe and short-lived rainfall (W., 1391, 79). Considering the flood history of the Islamabad basin, it is necessary to assess the potential risk of the flash flood. The purpose of this study is to evaluate and map the potential for a flash flood hazard using physiographic parameters.
Materials and methods
The Predicted Flood Potential Model (MFFPI) uses six parameters of physiognomy with specific coefficients to capture the potential flood hazard potential (Table 1). Each of the six parameters, classified according to the impact of the flash flood event, is classified into five classes, and each of these classes has a weight of 1 to 5 according to the role played by the amount of water accumulation. The weight of each parameter in each of the five sub-parameters is multiplied and the final score of each layer is calculated (Tinco et al., 2018,596). In this research, the MFFPI model is implemented in two stages. In the first step, each of the six parameters is used in the preparation of a potential risk map for the basin's sudden risk. In the second stage, based on Spearman correlation and linear regression, the effective parameters are selected and based on which the MFFPI model is implemented.
In the first step, the MFFPI's final potential mapping map shows that areas with very low potential and very low flood peculiarities are consistent with the basin's heights. These areas were not susceptible to water accumulation because of topographic conditions and the possibility of flooding was very low in these areas. Areas with a high potential hazard flash flood is within the reach of the Islamabad plain of the west and the bedrock of the main rivers of the Ravand River, and the topographic conditions of the area are the main cause of the high potential of the sudden flood in these areas. Using Spearman method, the correlation coefficient between six variables was used. The results of this method show that all parameters are correlated and the Sig value is zero. The results of linear regression show that four topographic slope variables, flow accumulation, domain curvature and land use are statistically significant and account for 96.6% of the potential flood index. The two-soil texture and rock permeability variables are not significant. In the second step, the final potential map of the MFFPI model is prepared using four parameters. The survey shows that areas with a low flood hazard potential correspond to the heights of the basin and are not prone to accumulation due to the slope. Areas with a high potential hazard has potential of a sudden flood within the reach of the Islamabad plain and on the main bed of the Ravand River.
The final map of the potential risk of flashflood event from the MFFPI model in the first phase indicates that 45% of the area of the Islamabad sub-basin has a high-risk potential. Also, 13% of the area in the basin has a medium risk potential and 42% of the area is located in a dangerous and very low area. The spatial distribution of hazard potential zones is subject to the topographic conditions of the basin and areas with a potentially hazardous location in mountainous areas that do not contribute to the accumulation and accumulation of water. Areas with a high-risk potential the flash flood in the plain areas of Islamabad and around the Ravand River bed is due to the fact that these areas are prone to accumulation and accumulation due to topographic conditions and the existence of a river. Four variables of topographic slope, flow accumulation, domain curvature, and land use explains 96.6% of the flood potential index and the potential flood event map in the second phase was based on them using the MFFPI model. A final flood potential map survey in the second stage showed that areas with a potential high risk of 34% of the basin area, areas with an average potential of 17%, and areas with a potential risk of 49% of the area of the Islamic Basin have been allocated. In the map of the potential for flash flood, in the second stage, the spatial distribution of hazard zones follows the topographic conditions and flow accumulation. The removal of soil texture parameters and rock permeability in the second stage reduced the area of high-risk areas and increased the area of low and middle areas. Finally, it can be acknowledged that the results of the MFFPI model at both levels indicate a high risk of flash flood in the area of the west Islamabad, and that the city and all its villages and its surface infrastructure are at risk of flash flood.


[1] نگارش، حسین؛ و ویسی، جلیل (1292). «تجزیه‌وتحلیل اثرات تغییرات بارش در سیل‌خیزی حوضۀ آبریز رودخانۀ راوند (منطقۀ اسلام‌آباد غرب- استان کرمانشاه)»، فصلنامۀ علمی پژوهشی برنامه‌ریزی منطقه‌ای، شمارۀ 11، ص 97-79.
]2[ Alhasanat, Hussein (2014). “Flash Flood Assessment for Wadi Mousa City-Jordan”, Procedia Economics and Finance, 18, pp: 675-683.
]3[ Angillieri, María Yanina Esper (2008). “Morphometric analysis of Colangüil river basin and flash flood hazard, San Juan, Argentina”. Environmental geology, 55(1), pp: 107-111.
]4 [Ayala, Ialcántara (2002). “Geomorphology, natural hazards, vulnerability and prevention of natural disasters in developing countries”. Geomorphology 47, pp: 107–124.
]5[ Bapalu, Venkata; & Sinha, Rajiv (2005). “ GIS in flood hazard mapping: A case study of Kosi River Basin, India”. GIS Development Weekly, 1(13), pp: 1-3.
]6[ BORCAN, Mihaela; & RETEGAN,  Mihai (2016). “‌ASSESSMENT OF THE FLOOD OCCURRENCE POTENTIAL IN THE UPPER TELEAJEN RIVER BASIN”. Annals of the University of Oradea, Geography Series/Analele Universitatii din Oradea, Seria Geografie, 26(1).‌
]7[ Bukle, Pull, )‌2007), “‌Community Based Management: A New Approach to Managing Disasters”. Proceeding of ESA Conference, Visions andDivisions, Helsinki, August 28-september 1, pp: 364-383.
]8[ Cao, Chen; Xu, Peihua; Wang, Yihong; Chen, Jianping; Zheng, Li; & Niu, Chenr (2016). “Flash flood hazard susceptibility mapping using frequency ratio and statistical index methods in coalmine subsidence areas”. Sustainability, pp: 8(9), 948.
]9[.Carlson, Toby (2004). “Analysis and Prediction of Surface Runoff in an Urbanizing Watershed Using Satellite Imagery 1”. JAWRA Journal of the American Water Resources Association 40, 1087-1098.
]10IConstantinescu, Şamer. (2011). “Observaţii asupra indicatorilor morfometrici determinaţi pe baza” MNAT.‌
]11[ Eze; Bassey Eze; Efiong, Joel (2010). “Morphometric parameters of the Calabar River basin: implication for hydrologic processes”. J GeogrGeol 2, pp:18–26.
]12[ Farhan, Yahya iSA; & Ayed, Atef. (2017). “Assessment of flash-flood Hazard in arid watersheds of Jordan. Journal of Geographic Information System, 9(06), 717.
]13[ Hong, Yang; Adhikari, Pradeep & Gourley Jonathan J. (2013). “‌Flash flood, in Encyclopedia of Natural Hazards”, P.T. Bobrowsky, Editor, Springer: Dordrecht, pp:324-325.
]14[ IF-NET. (2005). Flood net brochure.
]15[ Lee, Byong-Ju; & Kim, Sangil (2019). “Gridded Flash Flood Risk Index Coupling Statistical Approaches and TOPLATS Land Surface Model for Mountainous Areas. Water, 11(3), 504.
]16[ Leskens, Jack; Brugnach, Marcela; Hoekstra, Arjen; Schuurmans, Wlatm (2014). “Why are decisions in flood disaster management so poorly supported by information from flood models. Environmental modelling & software, 53, pp: 53-61.‌
]17[ Merz, Ben; Thieken, Allen; Gocht, Maek. (2007). “Flood risk mapping at the local scale: concepts and challenges”. In Flood risk management in Europe, Springer, Dordrecht, pp: 231-251.
]18[ Minea, Gabriel. (2013). “Assessment of the flash flood potential of Bâsca River Catchment (Romania) based on physiographic factors. Open Geosciences, 5(3), 344-353.‌
]19[ Musy, Andre; Higy, Christophe. (2010). “Hydrology: a science of nature. CRC Press.‌
]20[ Panizza, Mrat (2004). “ENvironmentalGeomorphology,ENCYCLOPEDIA of GEOMORPHOLOGY. volume 1, Routledgepress, pp: 231-251318-320.
]21[ Richter, Brian; Richter, Holly (2000). “ Prescribing flood regimes to sustain riparian ecosystems along meandering rivers”. Conservation Biology, 14(5), pp: 1467-1478.‌
]22[ Ryu, Jae Hyeon; Kim, Jungjin. (2019). “A Study on Climate-Driven Flash Flood Risks in the Boise River Watershed, Idaho”. Water, 11(5), 1039.
]23[ Smith, Greg (2003). “Flash flood potential: Determining the hydrologic response of FFMP basins to heavy rain by analyzing their physiographic characteristics”, A white paper available from the NWS Colorado Basin River Forecast Center web site at http://www. cbrfc. noaa. gov/papers/ffp_wpap. pdf.‌
]24[ Smith, Greg (2010). “Development of a flash flood potential index using physiographic data sets within a geographic information system” (Doctoral dissertation, The University of Utah).
]25[ Tincu, Roxana; Lazar, Gabril; Lazar, Iuliana (2018). “Modified flash flood potential index in order to estimate areas with predisposition to water accumulation”. Open Geosciences, 10(1), 593-606.
]26[ Veress, Márton; Németh, István; & Schläffer, Roland  (2012). “The effects of intensive rainfalls (flash floods) on the development on the landforms in the Kőszeg Mountains (Hungary) ”. Open Geosciences, 4(1), 47-66.‌
]27[ Wicht, Marzena; Osinska-Skotak, Katarzyna (2016). “Identifying urban areas prone to flash floods using GIS–preliminary results”. Hydrol. Earth Syst. Sci. Discuss. https://doi. org/10.5194/hess-2016-518.