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What our experts are reading: Adewole Adesiyun

MYRIAD-EU wants to develop solutions that will help industries to better manage multiple risks and hazards. This is why representatives from several important industries are essential to the project. Adewole Adesiyun, Deputy Secretary General at FEHRL, is an expert in the challenges the transport sector is facing today.  

Transport infrastructure is the lifeblood of modern society, yet, it is very vulnerable to multiple hazards. This affects the sector’s ability to meet demands and expectations on reliability, availability, maintainability, safety, environment, health, and cost.

Adewole, what’s your reading recommendation to better understand how multi-hazard and risk events are a challenge to transport infrastructure?

Just recently, I read an article on the BBC which described the havoc caused by landslides in Petrópolis, Brazil. It clearly shows how multiple hazards can have interrelated effects on risk, in this example floods leading to landslides. Apart from the tragic loss of lives, which was very high, the search for missing people, evacuating the injured and other highly important emergency responses were significantly hampered by the damage to road infrastructure, like roads and bridges.

The livelihood of so many people is, of course, also affected. It is worth bearing in mind that Petrópolis is a popular tourist destination. From a transport infrastructure point of view, the most important questions are how can we increase the resilience of seamless transport operations during such events, and how do we protect the users of the infrastructure while providing optimal information to the operators and users of transport infrastructure.

Another interesting article on the resilience of transport infrastructure was co-authored by the MYRIAD-EU researcher Elco Koks. The article explains that integrating resilience measures to transport planning can drastically reduce the impact of multiple natural hazard events on global road and rail networks. The article concludes that a little can go a long way when it comes to increasing the resilience of transport infrastructure now and preventing huge losses in the future.

I particularly liked the following sentence in the article, “Small additional investments at planning stage result in dramatic savings when natural disasters hit”.