A method to assess peak storm wind speeds using detailed damage surveys

G.A. Kopp, M.J. Morrison, B. Kordi, C. Miller

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Citations (Scopus)


A detailed damage survey of a single, wood-framed, structure, which had a complete roof failure during the passage of a gust front in southern Ontario, was performed. Radar data was used to estimate upper level wind speeds associated with the gust front. Details pertaining to the structural failure, including the debris field, were obtained. Wind tunnel pressure time histories, in a simulated atmospheric boundary layer, were used to establish the roof height, gust wind speed at failure. This speed was smaller than the upper level speed found from the analysis of the radar. The flight of the roof was also examined, and confirmed the wind speeds obtained from the structural analysis of the failure. The study illustrates that detailed damage surveys, which incorporate the use of wind tunnel test data and debris flight in the analysis, can shed considerable light on the details of the wind speeds at failure, reducing the uncertainty caused by the many assumptions in such analyses.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)90-98
JournalEngineering Structures
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2011


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