My research paper describes the computer program HAZUSÃÂ®-MH (Multihazard). "HAZUSÃÂ®-MH, is a nationally applicable ... methodology and software program that contains models for estimating potential losses from earthquakes, floods, and hurricane winds" (http://www.fema.gov/HAZUS/hz_meth.shtm). The program is funded by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and managed by the National Institute of Building Sciences (NIBS). The program also addresses the recovery of the places where the natural disasters occur.
The program was proposed in 1992 and then first issued in 1997, focusing on earthquake loss estimation. The development of HAZUSÃÂ® helped develop a state-of-the-art geographical information system (ArcGIS). The program was developed by a GIS method to calculate losses by algorithms, a building damage methodology, and a gathered set of National Databases from the 1990 Census and other databases. Releases included HAZUSÃÂ® 97, HAZUSÃÂ® 99 (SR1 - ((Service Release 1)) and SR2), 2001, and 2002. HAZUS 99 consisted of a single tier architecture utilizing two sets of algorithms.
In February of 2004, the hurricane and flood methods were released. Today, the program has a three-tier architecture, which consists of the three layers, the data, presentation and the application. This type of architecture is more complicated than HAZUS 99. The program is now developing the Maintenance Release, which is known as MR.
The contractors for the earthquakes portion were PBS&J (http://www.pbsj.com/) and Durham Technologies, Inc. (http://www.durtech.com/hazassess.html). Applied Research Associates (ARA, http://www.ara.com/), Inc. of Raleigh, North Carolina, developed the hurricane portion. And for the flood portion, the two contractors were ABS Consulting (http://www.absconsulting.com/index.html) and Michael Baker Jr. Corporation (http://www.mbakercorp.com/).
The program has been shown to work through thirty-one builds internally tested. For instance, Build #26 is the Beta test used by software and user experts. There is also a Graphical User Interface (GUI), which contains editable tables, menus, maps; boundary files describing...