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Health and Safety Executive publishes report on Shallow Water model "SPLOT"
Published:  16 November, 2009

The Health and Safety Executive has published a report that outlines the causes and consequences of catastrophic tank failure and examines the efficacy of bund overtopping prediction models such as SPLOT (SPreading Liquid Over Terrain), OVERTOP and LSMS.

Bunds around liquid storage tanks are generally designed so that they will retain more liquid than is contained in the tanks within them. A slow leak will therefore be contained. However, a sudden catastrophic tank failure will result in a surge of liquid, some of which may overtop the bund. Analysis of hazards allowing for this possibility therefore requires an estimate of how much liquid will overtop the bund. There is also the possibility that a bund may fail owing to the hydrodynamical forces exerted on it, but that is not considered at this stage.

The Health and Safety Laboratory’s SPLOT model predicts overtopping using a method based on the Shallow Water Theory. The Shallow Water Theory is supplemented by a model for the interaction of the liquid with a vertical bund. The Health and Safety Executive also uses two other models for predicting bund overtopping, namely OVERTOP and LSMS.

Research was carried out by a team at Liverpool John Moores University (LJMU) with the objective of evaluating SPLOT, LSMS and OVERTOP against experimental bund overtopping data, in order to gain confidence in the model and highlight any possible shortcomings.

To view the full report, please click here