March 25, 1998 Special Presentation

by Philip Schneider

NIBS Multi-hazard Loss Estimation Program



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Slides: 1, 2, 3, 4

May 1998 Update
About Philip Schneider
National Institute of Building Sciences (NIBS)


March 25, 1998 - 12:00 Noon (EST)
EIIP Tech Arena Online Presentation


Special Presentation

Philip Schneider
Director of NIBS Multihazard Loss Estimation Program

EIIP Tech Arena Moderator: Amy Sebring

The Virtual Forum Tech Arena hosted Philip Schneider, Director of the Multihazard Loss Estimation Program for the National Institute of Building Sciences (NIBS) on March 25, 1998, in a formal moderated online session. Schneider's presentation was an overview of the multi-hazard loss estimation methodology and HAZUS (HAZards U.S), a standardized nationally applicable earthquake loss estimation methodology implemented through PC-based geographic information system software. He explained that HAZUS is an essential element of FEMA's National Mitigation Strategy to promote sustained action to reduce long-term risk to people and property from earthquakes. HAZUS also assists local governments in facilitating short-term recovery through emergency preparedness in response to earthquakes.

HAZUS loss estimation methodology is a software program comprised of two major parts: an inventory data collection module and a methodology that estimates losses from potential earthquakes. The HAZUS earthquake model will be updated tentatively in July when HAZUS98 is issued. HAZUS98 will operate with the latest versions of MapInfo and ArcView. The goal (3-5 years) is to have integrated models for earthquake, wind and flood since these represent the greatest dollar loss in this country. Eventually, an urban wildfire models will be considered. HAZUS products are free to all federal, state and local users. HAZUS98 can be purchased at cost by private users.

Mr. Schneider was extremely well prepared and the information was most informative. The topic and fine delivery held the attention of the audience (approximately 30) for the full hour in the Tech Arena with a few questions one-on-one in the Virtual Forum immediately following the close of the session. Please see the edited script for the full dialogue.


Disaster Research 259, May 27, 1998 - HAZUS Update

In an effort to help local governments reduce losses from natural hazards through better mapping and loss estimation, FEMA funded the National Institute of Building Sciences to develop HAZUS, a standardized earthquake loss estimation methodology that uses geographic information system software.

HAZUS is one component of FEMA's National Mitigation Strategy to promote reduction of long-term risk to people and property due to earthquakes. HAZUS can also be used by local governments to enhance short-term recovery by improving emergency preparedness for earth-

HAZUS is being expanded to cover other hazards, with new models under planning and development for estimating potential losses from wind (hurricanes, thunderstorms, tornadoes, extra tropical cyclones, and hail) and floods (both riverine and coastal).

HAZUS comes in two versions, each compatible with one of the two major geographical information system (GIS) platforms commonly used in the U.S. - MapInfo and ArcView. The program is available on CD for either the eastern or western U.S.; other HAZUS products include individual CDs providing specific local data for multihazard exposure analysis by
state. A user's manual, a three-volume technical manual, a computer-based tutorial, and "InCAST" - an inventory survey and collection tool - are also available.

These products can be obtained from the National Institute of Building Sciences at no charge for the 1997 versions. However, upon release of the 1998 versions (expected late this year), private organizations will be charged for HAZUS at prices structured to cover the cost of
production, shipping, and handling. Federal, state, and local agencies will continue to be eligible to receive HAZUS products at no cost. For further information on HAZUS, visit the temporary HAZUS Web site: The permanent HAZUS Web site will be on-line shortly and will be accessible through the FEMA Web site.

For further information on the Multihazard Loss Estimation Program or HAZUS, contact Phil Schneider, Multihazard Loss Estimation Program, National Institute of Building Sciences, 1090 Vermont Avenue, N.W., Suite 700, Washington, D.C. 20005-4905; (202) 289-7800; fax: (202) 289-1092; e-mail: [email protected]

For information on ordering HAZUS products, contact John Boyer at the above address; (202) 289-7800; fax: (202) 289-1092; e-mail: [email protected]


NIBS Multi-hazard Loss Estimation Program

Mr. Schneider is the Director of the Multihazard Loss Estimation Program for the National Institute of Building Sciences (NIBS) in Washington, D.C. His primary responsibility is managing a national program for developing, testing, updating and implementing standardized
methodologies for estimating potential losses from earthquake, wind and flood hazards. Prior to his role as director, Phil was the manager for several projects on housing, building codes, land-use planning and Federal court design guidelines.

Before joining NIBS, Phil spent over ten years in architecture firms preparing designs, developing construction documents and managing construction for commercial, residential, industrial and institutional buildings.

Phil received a professional degree in architecture from the University of Notre Dame and is a registered architect in the states of Virginia and Maryland. He is affiliated with the Earthquake Engineering Research Institute (EERI), the Institute for Business and Home Safety (IBHS) and
the American Institute of Architects (AIA).

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