Sensitivity analysis of weather variables on offsite consequence analysis tools in South Korea and the United States

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We studied sensitive weather variables for consequence analysis, in the case of chemical leaks on the user side of offsite consequence analysis (OCA) tools. We used OCA tools Korea Offsite Risk Assessment (KORA) and Areal Location of Hazardous Atmospheres (ALOHA) in South Korea and the United States, respectively. The chemicals used for this analysis were 28% ammonia (NH3), 35% hydrogen chloride (HCl), 50% hydrofluoric acid (HF), and 69% nitric acid (HNO3). The accident scenarios were based on leakage accidents in storage tanks. The weather variables were air temperature, wind speed, humidity, and atmospheric stability. Sensitivity analysis was performed using the Statistical Package for the Social Sciences (SPSS) program for dummy regression analysis. Sensitivity analysis showed that impact distance was not sensitive to humidity. Impact distance was most sensitive to atmospheric stability, and was also more sensitive to air temperature than wind speed, according to both the KORA and ALOHA tools. Moreover, the weather variables were more sensitive in rural conditions than in urban conditions, with the ALOHA tool being more influenced by weather variables than the KORA tool. Therefore, if using the ALOHA tool instead of the KORA tool in rural conditions, users should be careful not to cause any differences in impact distance due to input errors of weather variables, with the most sensitive one being atmospheric stability.

Original languageEnglish
Article number1027
JournalInternational journal of environmental research and public health
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 2018 May 18


  • KORA
  • Offsite consequence analysis
  • Sensitivity analysis
  • Weather variable

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Health, Toxicology and Mutagenesis


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