Sedimentary records of coastal storm surges: Evidence of the 1953 North Sea event

Swindles, G. T. et al. (2018) Sedimentary records of coastal storm surges: Evidence of the 1953 North Sea event. Marine Geology, 403, pp. 262-270. (doi: 10.1016/j.margeo.2018.06.013)

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Abstract

The expression of storm events in the geological record is poorly understood; therefore, stratigraphic investigations of known events are needed. The 1953 North Sea storm surge was the largest natural disaster for countries bordering the southern North Sea during the twentieth century. We characterize the spatial distribution of a sand deposit from the 1953 storm surge in a salt marsh at Holkham, Norfolk (UK). Radionuclide measurements, core scanning X-ray fluorescence (Itrax), and particle size analyses, were used to date and characterise the deposit. The deposit occurs at the onset of detectable 137Cs - coeval with the first testing of nuclear weapons in the early 1950s. The sand layer is derived from material eroded from beach and dunes on the seaward side of the salt marsh. After the depositional event, accumulation of finer-grained silt and clay materials resumed. This work has important implications for understanding the responses of salt marshes to powerful storms and provides a near-modern analogue of storm surge events for calibration of extreme wave events in the geological record.

Item Type:Articles
Additional Information:We thank the White Rose Collaboration Fund for funding this work. We also gratefully acknowledge the use of facilities at NOC, Southampton (BOSCORF Itrax) and the University of Southampton (GAU Radiometric Dating Laboratories). Sarah Henderson and the Holkham Estate are thanked for their assistance in working at Holkham. GR was funded by a NERC doctoral training grant (NE/L002450/1). This paper represents NRCan contribution number 20180084 (JMG).
Status:Published
Refereed:Yes
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Parry, Dr Lauren
Authors: Swindles, G. T., Galloway, J. M., Macumber, A. L., Croudace, I., Emery, A. R., Woulds, C., Bateman, M. D., Parry, L., Jones, J. M., Selby, K., Rushby, G. T., Baird, A. J., Woodroffe, S. A., and Barlow, N. L.M.
College/School:College of Social Sciences > School of Interdisciplinary Studies
Journal Name:Marine Geology
Publisher:Elsevier
ISSN:0025-3227
ISSN (Online):0025-3227
Published Online:23 June 2018
Copyright Holders:Copyright © 2018 The Authors
First Published:First published in Marine Geology 403: 262-270
Publisher Policy:Reproduced under a Creative Commons License

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