Building Losses from Natural Hazards: Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow



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J.H. Wiggins Co.


In July, 1975, the National Science Foundation made two grants to the J.H. Wiggins Company of Redondo Beach, California,and added a third in September, 1976. The firm was charged with responsibility for development of forecasts associated with out most destructive natural hazards which could be used as a basis for establishing research priorities and public policy directions. The principal study reports are listed in the references to this document. Because the studies were limited to building damage and related losses, the nine hazards examined were selected in recognition of their historic impact on such structures. They are: earthquake, landslide, expansive soil, hurricane wind/storm surge, tornado, riverine flood, local wind, local flood and tsunami. The first phase of these studies, summarized in this document, deals solely with damage to buildings. The second, which is referenced, addresses other types of losses known to often increase the impact of a hazard many-fold. Covered in this second phase are building contents and income losses, transportation effects due to dislocations of suppliers, homelessness and unemployment, as well as costs of applying certain mitigations.


21 pages; available for download at the link below.


damage costs