A data base of documented sediment-transporting events in torrent catchments of Austria, Switzerland and Northern Italy was established, including information on deposition volume, deposition area, the shape of the debris-fan, topological parameters and descriptions of geomorphologic features of debris events. Relations between topological parameters of the catchment including the deposition area and type of process were examined, providing a basis for improving existing classification schemes to distinguish between different torrential flow processes. Altogether 106 debris-flows events, 10 debris-flood events and 17 events with fluvial sediment transport processes were compiled. The data was used to test existing methods to predict the total travel distance or the runout distance on the fan showing acceptable results if the longidutinal profile of the flow path is known. Our data also confirm an empirical relationship between the deposition area and deposition volume, showing a similar trend as the data of Iverson et al. (1998) and Crosta et al. (2003). Two new GIS-based runout prediction methods, TopRunDF and TopFlowDF, were developed within this study. Both models use a simple flow routing algorithm, described in Hürlimann et al. (2008), to determine the potential runout area covered by debris-flow deposits. For a given volume and starting point of the deposition, a Monte-Carlo simulation is used to produce trajectories that include the spreading effect of a debris flow. TopRunDF delineates the runout zone by confining the simulated potential spreading area in the down slope direction with an empirically determined planimetric deposition area. TopFlowDF uses a simple dynamical approach based on flow parameters and a friction slope to predict deposition zones on the fan. The GIS-based simulation models were adapted to run with high resolution (2.5 m x 2.5 m) digital elevation models, generated for example from LiDAR data, and were tested with debris-flow events from Switzerland and South Tyrol for areas where LiDAR generated elevation models were available. The predicted deposition zones simulated with TopRunDF and TopFlowDF show a reasonable agreement with the observed deposition areas.