The strategies to DVI challenges in Typhoon Morakot


Small village populations in which there is a high amount of kinship can cause complications in cases of disaster victim identification. This problem was highlighted by the loss of life after Typhoon Morakot struck Taiwan where over 500 people from small isolated communities lost their lives. Most of the victims were buried by landslides in the remote mountainous areas of southern Taiwan. Only 146 pieces of human remains were recovered after searching for 4 months. Most of the human remains were received for examination as severely damaged fragments prevented possible identification by morphological features. DNA testing using the traditional duo parent/child or sibling screening by STR data opens the possibility of including not only the actual victim but also false positives. Variable likelihood ratios were obtained when comparing DNA types from human remains to those from potential relatives; however, with the DNA typing of numerous members of the same living family, multiple matches to potential families were avoided. Of the 146 samples obtained and collapsed to 130 victims, they were linked to 124 individuals resulting in their identification when compared to a pool of 588 potential relatives. Six of the human remains could not be linked to any living relative and remain unknown.

DOI: 10.1007/s00414-010-0479-8

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@article{Lin2010TheST, title={The strategies to DVI challenges in Typhoon Morakot}, author={Chun-Yen Lin and Tsun-Ying Huang and Hsuan-Cheng Shih and Chiao-Hsuan Yuan and Liang-Ju Chen and H Tsai and Chih-Hsin Pan and Hui-Ming Chiang and Hsin-Lin Liu and Wen-Chi Su and K Wu and Chi-Hsiang Chao and Nu-En Huang and Kun-Da Yang and H M Hsieh and Li-Chin Tsai and Adrian M. T. Linacre and Yu-Jen Yu and Yen-Yang Lin and Pao-Ching Chu and James T Lee}, journal={International Journal of Legal Medicine}, year={2010}, volume={125}, pages={637-641} }