FEMA’s Methodology for Estimating Potential Losses from Disasters
Hazus is a nationally applicable standardized methodology that contains models for estimating potential losses from earthquakes, floods and hurricanes. Hazus uses Geographic Information Systems (GIS) technology to estimate physical, economic and social impacts of disasters. It graphically illustrates the limits of identified high-risk locations due to earthquake, hurricane and floods. Users can then visualize the spatial relationships between populations and other more permanently fixed geographic assets or resources for the specific hazard being modeled, a crucial function in the pre-disaster planning process.
For more information about the Hazus program, please visit the Hazus home page. From there, you can learn how to:
- Stay connected with the Hazus Community by joining your local Hazus User Group
- Sign up for Hazus Training from FEMA's Emergency Management Institute
- Find technical support at the Hazus Help Desk
As part of an effort to modernize Hazus, a number of updates have been released or are in progress. The first update was released in January 2015 and provided compatibility of Hazus with ArcGIS 10.2.2 and Windows 8. A service pack to the January release was put out in May 2015 and features several enhancements to the flood module. This included the application of dasymetric General Building Stock (GBS) approach and the implementation of study region aggregation at the custom jurisdiction or neighborhood level. Later in Hazus Modernization, the underlying code of Hazus will be re-architected to align with current practices, enabling future development.
For more information about the Modernization effort, follow the Hazus program on Twitter or LinkedIn and subscribe to receive Hazus program updates, or contact the Hazus Outreach team at firstname.lastname@example.org. For more information about the Modernization effort, follow the Hazus program on Twitter or LinkedIn and subscribe to receive Hazus program updates, or contact the Hazus Outreach team at email@example.com.
Download the Software
Hazus-MH operates on Esri’s ArcGIS product. Click on the "Hazus-MH Application" link below to download the software. Internet Explorer and Mozilla Firefox web browsers are recommended to perform the download. Google Chrome is not supported. The latest version of Hazus-MH (2.2), must be installed with ArcGIS 10.2.2
Note: If you upgraded your Hazus software with 2.2 SP01 prior to 10AM Eastern Time on May 26th, you must update an .mdb file that may lead to inaccuracies in the flood data folder of your Hazus Application Installation Directory: flDmRsFn.mdb. Copy and save the file into the DATA\FL\ folder of your Hazus Application Install Directory, which typically looks something like this: C:\Program Files\Hazus-MH\DATA\FL. When a window pops up asking "Do you want to replace this file," click yes. If you already created a study region using the patch with the incorrect database, you will need to create a new study region with the new database. The previous study region should be deleted and any analysis rerun in the new study region. If you updated the Hazus software with SP01 after 10AM Eastern Time on May 26th, you have the correct .mdb file and do not need to take any action.
International users may download the Hazus-MH 2.2 software, but not the U.S. state or territory datasets. International users who require technical assistance downloading the software may email the FEMA Map Information eXchange (FMIX) at FEMAMapSpecialist@riskmapcds.com.
The entire US state dataset and individual state datasets which have now been updated to reflect Census 2010 data are available for download below.
- Direct Download—select the download image to begin an HTTP download.
- Managed Download—check all the files you wish to download then select the "Start Managed Download" button.
- Homogenous—building exposure is assumed to be uniformly (homogeneously) distributed throughout a Census block. Hazus-MH has historically used homogeneous Census data. Using these data may lead to estimating losses in sub-Census Block areas with no building exposure.
- Dasymetric—undeveloped areas (such as area covered by bodies of water, parks, or forests) are removed from the Census blocks. The cumulative building exposure is distributed only in developed sub-Census Block areas. Use these data to more accurately produce flood loss determinations. For documentation on how the dasymetric data was produced, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org. Since Earthquake and Hurricane analysis use the tract level data, users of those models can choose either dataset.