Switzer, A.D., Yu, F., Gouramanis, C, Soria, J, Pham, T.D. 2014. An integrated approach to assessing coastal hazards at multi-century timescales. In: Green, A.N. and Cooper, J.A.G. (eds.), Proceedings 13th International Coastal Symposium (Durban, South Africa), Journal of Coastal Research, Special Issue No. 70, pp. 723–728, ISSN 0749-0208.
In many places on earth, the written record of coastal flooding events from tropical cyclones (typhoons, hurricanes) and tsunamis is too short or inconsistent to accurately assess the hazard posed by both kinds of event on scales beyond those of the average human lifespan. In this paper we summarize an integrated research paradigm that incorporates instrumental, historical, archaeological and geological records to extend the record of coastal flooding events to generate a multi-century analysis of recurrence interval for coastal flooding, thus, improving long-term risk assessment. The two primary factors in assessing risk from coastal hazards are frequency and magnitude. These can be addressed through field and modeling studies of washover deposits where they are found. We also summarize recent advances in the identification of overwash events from the geological record and report on the progress to distinguish storm and tsunami deposits. The recent advances have increased the utility of tsunami and storm deposits to improve coastal risk assessment.