Volume XII |

The vulnerability of the European Road 85 to blizzard, on the road section between Urziceni and Buzău

Abstract: The blizzard phenomenon is the climate risk that has the greatest impact on the road-ways in the South-Eastern part of Romania. The E85 section between Urziceni and Buzău has a great vulnerability to blizzard. Its vulnerability was proved during the 26th of January – the 14th of February 2012, when the road-way was blocked for 10 days. In order to establish the vulnerability level for E85 road, the section between Urziceni and Buzău, the Roads Vulnerability to Blizzard Index (RVBI) has been calculated and spatially modelled by using the GIS techniques. This index integrates several factors, such as: road sections orientation, buildings density in the vicinity of the road, width of the villages that are crossed by E85, the snow drift potential, within built-up areaʼs orientation to E85, the negative relief forms along the road section. The calculation of the RVBI points out that 74% of total length of the road present high and very high vulnerability during blizzard phenomenon. The road sections with high and very high vulnerability need protective measures, such as: forest belts plantation, using bigger snow fences, increasing the snow fences density and achieving more equipment for snow moving off by the local authorities.