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Water Sci Technol. 2009;60(1):231-42. doi: 10.2166/wst.2009.334.

Including public perception data in the evaluation of the consequences of sewerage derived urban flooding.

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Sustainable Water Management Research Group, School of the Built Environment, Heriot-Watt University, Edinburgh EH14 4AS, Scotland, UK.


This text reports research which was undertaken to assess the failure consequences associated with sewerage systems. In an effort to move away from considering only flood volume, depth or extent, the text will focus on how a survey of public opinion was used to inform the development of a consequence scoring methodology. The failure consequences considered range from internal flooding of properties, to road closure, environmental damage and odour problems. The text reports the extent to which experience of flooding influences perceptions of failure consequence and sewerage system management. It is also outlined how this data was used, along with other data sources, to construct an objective scoring process that can be used to evaluate failure consequence and readily prioritise sewerage maintenance.

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