Assessment of Avalanche Risk to Roads in the Rasht Valley, Tajikistan
Tajikistan, as well as other mountainous countries of Central Asia, are at high risk of snow avalanches every year from January to April once the snowpack is melting. In Tajikistan, avalanches are the most frequent and damaging hazards. In 2019, 65% of all hazards in Tajikistan were avalanches, followed by debris flows, floods, rock falls, and earthquakes. In September 2022, MSRI signed a contract with World Bank to map roads and villages at avalanche risk in the Rasht Valley of Tajikistan, using our SAFE technology.
The first objective is mapping avalanche deposits that occurred during the last 33 years using SAFE. Based on these results, lists and maps of villages and roads impacted by avalanches will be provided, as well as the frequency of such hazards. Second, snow hazards are highly variable in terms of size, location, frequency, and geomorphic characteristics, such as elevation. Since SAFE can provide 33 years of annual maps of avalanches, the trends of these parameters are assessed across time using thresholds of significance. Finally, training on SAFE technology will be delivered in Tajikistan in 2023.