Assessing road vulnerability in seismic conditions: a comprehensive study


  • Sonia Adafer
  • Mohamed Badaoui
  • Mahmoud Bensaibi
  • Saïd Mokhbi



vulnerability, road damages, analytic hierarchy process, seismic vulnerability index, earthquakes


Road infrastructure is indispensable for societal functionality, yet it is highly susceptible to the devastating impacts of seismic events. This paper focuses on enhancing the resilience of road systems by systematically identifying, quantifying, and assessing factors contributing to their vulnerability during earthquakes. The core objective of this study is to develop and validate a seismic vulnerability index for road sections, which aims to evaluate and classify the susceptibility of road infrastructure to earthquake-induced damage comprehensively. This systematic approach is pivotal for guiding effective mitigation strategies and prioritization efforts. To fulfill this objective, the study employs the Analytic Hierarchy Process (AHP) to introduce a novel methodology for calculating the seismic vulnerability index, incorporating various factors that influence road vulnerability. This method allows for the accurate classification of road sections into distinct levels of susceptibility, providing a solid foundation for implementing targeted interventions and enhancing road resilience. Further, the paper validates the theoretical model through several case studies, demonstrating the practical applicability and effectiveness of the seismic vulnerability index in real-world scenarios. Additionally, the use of Geographic Information System (GIS) technology to simulate earthquake scenarios within an urban road network offers valuable insights into the potential seismic behavior of roads. These simulations are crucial for identifying critical areas that require intervention and for planning resilience-building efforts more effectively. By proposing a comprehensive framework that combines rigorous analysis, empirical validation, and advanced simulation techniques, this paper seeks to make a significant contribution to the field of infrastructure resilience. It aims to advance the understanding of road vulnerability in seismic conditions and supports the development of strategic approaches for enhancing the resilience of road infrastructure against earthquakes. Through the development and validation of a seismic vulnerability index, this study meets its primary objective, providing a valuable resource for researchers, policymakers, and practitioners in disaster management and infrastructure planning.


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How to Cite

Adafer, S., Badaoui, M., Bensaibi, M., & Mokhbi, S. (2024). Assessing road vulnerability in seismic conditions: a comprehensive study. STUDIES IN ENGINEERING AND EXACT SCIENCES, 5(1), 926–954.