Journal of Geographical Sciences ›› 2011, Vol. 21 ›› Issue (5): 791-800.doi: 10.1007/s11442-011-0880-3

• Physical Geography • Previous Articles     Next Articles

Tropical cyclone hazards analysis based on tropical cyclone potential impact index

XIAO Fengjin1, YIN Yizhou1,2, LUO Yong1, SONG Lianchun1, YE Dianxiu1   

  1. 1. Beijing Climate Center, Beijing 100081, China;
    2. Institute of Atmospheric Physics, CAS, Beijing 100029, China
  • Received:2011-01-25 Revised:2011-02-22 Online:2011-10-15 Published:2011-10-03
  • About author:Xiao Fengjin (1973–), Ph.D and Associate Professor, specialized in the study of meteorological disasters and risk assessment. E-mail:
  • Supported by:

    National Science & Technology Pillar Program during the 11th Five-Year Plan Period, No.2007BAC29B05; No.2008BAK50B02


Tropical cyclone, a high energy destructive meteorological system with heavy rainfall and gale triggered massive landslides and windstorms, poses a significant threat to coastal areas. In this paper we have developed a Tropical Cyclone Potential Impact Index (TCPI) based on the air mass trajectories, disaster information, intensity, duration, and frequency of tropical cyclones. We analyzed the spatial pattern and interannual variation of the TCPI over the period 1949–2009, and taking the Super Typhoon Saomai as an example have examined the relationship between the TCPI and direct economic losses, total rainfall, and maximum wind speed. The results reveal that China's TCPI appears to be a weak decreasing trend over the period, which is not significant overall, but significant in some periods. Over the past 20 years, the TCPI decreased in the southern China coastal provinces of Hainan, Guangdong and Guangxi, while it increased in the southeastern coastal provinces of Zhejiang, Fujian and Taiwan. The highest values of TCPI are mainly observed in Taiwan, Hainan, the coastal areas of Guangdong and Fujian and Zhejiang’s southern coast. The TCPI has a good correlation (P=0.01) with direct economic loss, rainfall, and maximum wind speed.

Key words: tropical cyclone, potential impact index, temporal and spatial variation, direct economic losses, Typhoon Saomai