When large periods of observation are considered, the densest information are often a collection of the daily rain gauges network. As this information is scattered in space, the stochastic results and specially the rainfall risk assessment, are biased because of the rainfall events that are not ‘observed’ by the network. Rainfall risk can be assessed using a punctual approach with the estimation of regional return period of a punctual rainfall depth exceeding a given value, or using a spatial approach with the frequency analysis of the areas of isohyets defined at a given rain threshold τ. This last approach consists, for a given τ, in estimating the return period of isohyet areas. Using simulation, a method of unbiased rainfall risk assessment is proposed for the Languedoc-Roussillon region (France). It has been shown that the bias influence is negligible for the regional return periods of isohyet areas, for 24-hour and 48-hour duration, when compared to their confident limits. On the contrary the return periods of punctual rainfall depths above a given value are more sensitive: for values above 170 mm/24h and 270 mm/48h, the biased return periods could be up to 3 times overestimated.

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