A generalized Grubbs-Beck test statistic for detecting multiple potentially influential low outliers in flood series



[1] The Grubbs-Beck test is recommended by the federal guidelines for detection of low outliers in flood flow frequency computation in the United States. This paper presents a generalization of the Grubbs-Beck test for normal data (similar to the Rosner (1983) test; see also Spencer and McCuen (1996)) that can provide a consistent standard for identifying multiple potentially influential low flows. In cases where low outliers have been identified, they can be represented as “less-than” values, and a frequency distribution can be developed using censored-data statistical techniques, such as the Expected Moments Algorithm. This approach can improve the fit of the right-hand tail of a frequency distribution and provide protection from lack-of-fit due to unimportant but potentially influential low flows (PILFs) in a flood series, thus making the flood frequency analysis procedure more robust.