Landfalling tropical cyclones (TCs) result in devastation, economic damages, and numerous fatalities around the world each year. The impacts to specific communities vary widely due not only to variations in the physical impacts of the TC, but also because of the particular societal vulnerability of the landfall region. At the nexus of TC impacts and factors associated with societal vulnerabilities lies an opportunity to understand, and thus increase, societal resilience to these devastating natural disasters. This research seeks to gain insight into the co-relationships among TC physical characteristics upon landfall and societal factors that lead to vulnerability, and to understand the variability of these factors by location and over time.
Here, an analysis of the spatial characteristics of 20 years of TC landfalling events sourced from the International Best Track Archive for Climate Stewardship from 1998-2017 on scales ranging from global to regional is presented. Using NASA TRMM and GPM-based 3B42 and IMERG rainfall datasets along with Cross-Calibrated Multi-Platform wind fields from Remote Sensing Systems, the spatial and temporal characteristics of TC impacts are analyzed and mapped against economic damages and human casualties. Sources for human impacts include the Center for Research on the Epidemiology of Disasters (CRED) Emergency Events Database, World Bank, and the Socioeconomic Data and Applications Center. Finally, we investigate the inter-relationships among TC physical impacts and societal damages in different regions and for developing verses developed countries to quantify the physical sources of vulnerability and resiliency of each impacted region.