Effect of Snow Fall on Steel Structures in the West Bank- Risk Assessment Study

Discussion Committee: 
Dr. Abdel Fattah Hasan / Major supervisor
Dr. Monther Dweikat / Co- supervisor
Dr. Nasr Abboushi / External Examiner
Dr. Mohammad Othman / Internal Examiner
Dr. Abdel Fattah Hasan / Major supervisor
Dr. Monther Dweikat / Co- supervisor
Nour Nidal Samaro
Climate change affected Palestine in the last few years and caused different losses and damages. The West Bank were affected clearly by extreme snow fall which caused significant losses in different aspects giving attention to what could be the outcomes in the next years. Adverse effects that result from the accumulated snow fall were manifested in several directions such as in the agricultural, commercial, economic and construction sectors. The effect was obviously viewed and steel structures encountered different problems. Constructions were confronted high loads that were not used to be considered before and caused lots of losses. This research was made due to the importance of studying how to mitigate the adverse effect of increase in snow fall in the coming years and to respond to any similar risks quickly. The importance of this research is to have better understanding of the climate change effects- snow effect as a case study on steel structures especially in the West Bank and studying the risk that may affect steel structures and results from different aspects such as the unexpected snow fall (natural events), the instability of the structure - not designed with bracing (man-made events) or a combination of the previous events which may affect structures and caused failure. It is also important for decision makers to adopt the best management strategies and practices in minimizing and mitigating the negative consequences resulting from increase in snow fall. Different objectives through the research were achieved started by studying the effect of frequent snow accumulation on design and building construction in the West Bank, computing the snow loads on steel structures based on current codes. Also, evaluating the future risk that may result from that excessive event by identifying threats, hazards and consequences. Finally, proposing risk management options, to mitigate hazards for such risks. Structural and risk analysis were mainly carried out in this research, for the structural analysis, two main cases were chosen to be analyzed and checked, the first case was Jamaeen stone cut truss and the second one was the Italian company for marble, although their roofs were analyzed using SAP 2000 software and designed using snow load as per the Jordanian Code, the analysis shows that the roof is safe, the roof failed in reality and that may make the current using codes for computing snow load unsafe under certain circumstances. Thus, modification factors are needed. For risk analysis, the snow fall over steel structures risk were analyzed by identifying the risk, its causes and consequences by using the Bow tie and matrix risk analysis tools. After that risk evaluation and control measures that help making decisions based on the outcomes of the risk analysis such as removing the accumulated snow before, during and after the snow were suggested. Finally, risk management options so as to mitigate and adapt hazards in order to improve the preparedness and response were proposed such as recommending a future risk mapping and zoning, also, increasing the public awareness by training, education around threats and hazards, moreover, to improve emergency response capacity as civil defense capacity.
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