Natural Hazards

, Volume 71, Issue 3, pp 1453–1473 | Cite as

Field measurements in river embankments: validation and management with spatial database and webGIS

Original Paper


This study focuses on the development of a system with a spatial database and a webGIS able to store, validate and display the data to assist the decision makers in managing early warning systems for river embankment failure. In order to obtain precise results, it is essential to have a tool with ability of managing a large number of data for checking their reliability and for locating them in the space. In this paper, special emphasis was given in the development of procedures to assess the reliability of the measures. For this purpose, the database includes all the information needed to describe the instrument performance, such as the sand pack size and casing diameter of open-standpipe piezometers for evaluating their time lag, and the calibration curves of transducers with the possibility of their updating. The position of the non-functioning instruments is identified through the analysis of the electrical signal and spatial displays, while the analyses of the redundancy and coherence of measures is used for detecting doubtful data. Database and webGIS were applied to the monitoring data of an embankment of the Adige River in Northern Italy. The database and webGIS system has proved to be a suitable and effective tool for the management and validation of real-time data and periodical field measurements.


River embankment Failure Field measurements Spatial database webGIS Data validation 



The work has been partially supported by the Autonomous Province of Bolzano-Bozen, Italy, that funded for the field instrumentation. The authors are grateful to Mr Davide Ronco for his contribution to prepare the images from the webGIS.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • Lucia Simeoni
    • 1
    • 2
  • Paolo Zatelli
    • 1
  • Claudio Floretta
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Civil, Environmental and Mechanical EngineeringUniversity of TrentoTrentoItaly
  2. 2.Department of Civil, Construction-Architectural and Environmental EngineeringUniversity of L’AquilaL’AquilaItaly

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