Tuesday, September 30, 2008

What To Do About IKE ?

What will it take to make this nation more resilient to the costly damages that are inflicted by severe weather and climate change? The devastating impacts of Hurricanes Gustav and Ike provide only the most recent reminder of how vulnerable our society is to the effects of catastrophic storms.

A Capital Hill Luncheon Briefing / Tuesday / Oct 7, 2008 / Noon till 1:30 PM / 2325 Rayburn House Office Building / Washington D.C.
To download the event flyer, click here ...


Monday, September 29, 2008

Florida Division of Emergency Management posts "HAZUS and Florida" presentation ...

Richard Butgereit, the GIS Administrator for Florida Division of Emergency Management, discussed how HAZUS is used in Florida for disaster management at the recent 2008 Central Florida GIS Workshop. FDEM has posted this presentation (.pdf), click here...

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Friday, September 26, 2008

Planet Prepare report ...

A recent report from World Vision addresses how coastal communities in Asia must prepare for future catastrophes. To read more, click here...


Monday, September 22, 2008

ESRI On-line HAZUS-MH Training Expanding ...

The ESRI series of outstanding HAZUS-MH on-line courses is ever expanding ...

HAZUS-MH Overview and InstallationFree
Explore the basic types of analysis that HAZUS-MH can perform as well as the types of information it can generate about the social and economic impacts of natural hazards.

HAZUS-MH for Decision Makers—Free
Learn how HAZUS-MH can support your mitigation, response, and recovery efforts.

Introduction to Using HAZUS-MH to Assess Losses from a Riverine Flood Hazard Walk through a real-world example of loss estimation with HAZUS-MH.

HAZUS-MH Flood Model Output and Applications Learn how HAZUS-MH can be used to identify and explore the effectiveness of flood response actions with a focus on how this information can be effectively used by communities to better plan for and prevent losses from floods.

Introduction to Using HAZUS-MH for Hurricane Loss Estimation Learn how to use HAZUS-MH to generate estimates of building damage, shelter needs, and economic impacts from hurricanes.

Introduction to Using HAZUS-MH for Earthquake Loss Estimation Learn how to model earthquakes using information about building stock, economic data, geology, the location and size of potential earthquakes, and other information to estimate losses that might be incurred from an earthquake.

To download the ESRI HAZUS-MH course brochure, click here ...

ESRI HAZUS-MH course list, click here...


ArcGIS Explorer Hurricane Ike Maps and Layers Now Available

ESRI's ArcGIS Online team has published a service containing recent imagery obtained from NOAA and showing the aftermath of Hurricane Ike for the Galveston, Texas, area. These data are now available to ArcGIS Explorer users as a complete map or a layer that can be added to an existing map. To go to the ESRI ArcGIS Exploer Blog, click here...

HAZUS.org is looking for anybody who incorporated these data with HAZUS-MH analysis. If you want to post or discuss your analysis please contact HAZUS.org, click here...

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GAO says FEMA Should Better Assess Voluntary Organizations’ Mass-Care Capabilities

The GAO faults FEMA for not fully assessing the capacities of relief groups and for not clearly documenting the roles that each should play in a disaster. To read the GAO report, click here...

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Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Public Briefing on the Grand challenges for Disaster Reduction

This event is sponsored by the Congressional Hazards Caucus and the National Science and Technology Council's Subcommittee on Disaster Reduction. Speakers will discuss recent natural hazard events to illustrate the Grand Challenges for Disaster Reduction identified by the National Science and Technology Council’s Subcommittee on Disaster Reduction. Copies of the recently released implementation plans identifying priority science and technology activities for 14 hazards will be distributed.

When: Friday / September 19, 2008 / Noon
Where: Rayburn House Office Building, Room 2325 / Washington, D.C.

Lunch is provided!

To download a flyer on this event, click here...


Great New England Hurricane of 1938

On the 70th anniversary of the "Great New England Hurricane of 1938" Southampton, NY and Suffolk County have implemented a major public awareness campaign.

Suffolk County Emergency Services Commissioner Joseph Williams said the county relies heavily on the HAZUS-MH projections for developing models to train response personnel. “We use this like a Bible,” Mr. Williams said. “We’re constantly preparing for an event like this.”

To read an article in the East Hampton Press, click here...

To download the Southampton 2008 Hurricane Guide, click here...

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Saturday, September 13, 2008

Media reporting of HAZUS-MH damage estimates ...

HAZUS.org is getting calls and emails from media sources asking about HAZUS-MH generated damage estimates for Hurricane IKE.

HAZUS.org cautions that HAZUS-MH hurricane loss and damage estimates can vary dramatically depending on the accuracy of the input data and the experience of the operator. HAZUS-MH is a sophisticated software system that is intended to be used in the disaster management community.

The following is taken from the FEMA HAZUS web site...

HAZUS-MH loss estimates can include:

  • Physical damage to residential and commercial buildings, schools, critical facilities, and infrastructure;
  • Economic loss, including lost jobs, business interruptions, repair and reconstruction costs; and
  • Social impacts, including estimates of shelter requirements, displaced households, and population exposed to scenario floods, earthquakes and hurricanes.
The HAZUS-MH MR3 Hurricane Wind Model allows users in the Atlantic and Gulf Coast regions and Hawaii to estimate hurricane winds and potential damage and loss to residential, commercial, and industrial buildings. It also estimates direct economic loss, post-storm shelter needs, and building and tree debris quantities and allows assessment of specific structural changes to buildings to strengthen them for mitigation. The model has the capability to define hurricane scenarios using National Weather Service forecasts/advisories and the software is optimized for rapid loss assessment. New MR3 features for the Hurricane Model include mitigation analysis options for all of the building classes and thousands of new damage and loss functions in the database. Tree debris can be estimated by weight or volume likely to be collected and disposed of using public funds. An "Automatic Outputs" tool added to the Hurricane Analysis Options dialog allows users to specify a standard set of results that will be automatically generated after each scenario or probabilistic analysis. A new rapid loss feature has been added that generates a range of potential damage and loss estimates for a given hurricane forecast that are included in the rapid loss summary report. Details about the Hurricane Wind Model.



For the latest update on Hurricane IKE and the current series of Gulf and Atlantic storms go to the NOAA/NWS National Hurricane Center web page, click here...*

The HAZUS-MH Hurricane Model allows users to estimate the economic and social losses from hurricane winds. The information provided by the model can be used by state and local officials in evaluating, planning for, and mitigating the effects of hurricane winds. For more info on the HAZUS-MH Hurricane Model, click here...

A CNN article reports that HAZUS-MH estimates that Hurricane IKE will cause $11.8 billion in damage, including $10 billion in property damage. HAZUS.org has no information as to the source of these estimates or who performed the HAZUS-MH runs that CNN is quoting. Readers are cautioned that results from HAZUS-MH simulations can vary dramatrically depending on the accuracy of input data.

Other resources ...
Texas Governor's Division of Emergency Management
FEMA Region VI

Texas HAZUS User Group - TXHUG

Read more about the September 8, 1900 Galveston Hurricane ...
CNN Continental Remembrance
The 1900 Storm

* NOTE: HAZUS.org should not be used for time critical disaster information. Information posted on HAZUS.org is intended to support the HAZUS user community prior to, during and after disasters.


Wednesday, September 10, 2008

September is National Prepardness Month

To learn more visit the DHS Ready.gov National Preparedness Month web site, click here...

Uses and limitations of observations, data, forecasts, and other projections in decision support for selected sectors and regions

The report, which might be of interest to the HAZUS user community, examines the computer-based decision support tools that many government agencies use to make predictions and forecasts in areas such as agricultural productivity, air quality, renewable energy resources, water management, and the prevention of vector-borne disease.

To view this report, click here...

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Tuesday, September 9, 2008

HAZUS-MH MR-3 Shipping Again...

HAZUS.org just talked to the FEMA Distribution Center and they told us they have just started shipping HAZUS-MH MR3 again after being temporarily "sold out" ... back orders are being sent out first so look in the mail box ...

Got a question ... call the FEMA Distribution Center - Tel: 800-480-2520

To order HAZUS-MH from FEMA, click here