Title page for ETD etd-07092012-145208

Type of Document Master's Thesis
Author Massarra, Carol C.
Author's Email Address carol_masara@yahoo.com
URN etd-07092012-145208
Title Hurricane Damage Assessment Process for Residential Buildings
Degree Master of Science in Engineering Science (M.S.E.S.)
Department Engineering Science (Interdepartmental Program)
Advisory Committee
Advisor Name Title
Friedland, Carol Committee Chair
Keim, Barry Committee Member
Okeil, Ayman Committee Member
Roider, Emerald Committee Member
  • data collection
  • hurricane
  • damage assessment
  • residential
Date of Defense 2012-06-28
Availability unrestricted
Assessing an affected area immediately after a severe natural hazard event and saving the resulting data are vitally important in any effort to reduce future economic losses from natural hazards. These data are used as a record of buildings performance and as a major component for statistical analysis and damage modeling studies. Since these data are used as input for these studies, the data must be assessed and collected in a scientific and standardized way. Despite this requirement, neither a systematic damage assessment process nor a standardized data collection protocol is currently available in the United States to ensure that the necessary, correct, and accurate damage and attribute data are collected, assessed, managed, and saved for hurricane events. In cases where these data are actually collected and assessed, they are lost soon after the event, rather than kept to longitudinally assess building performance in severe natural hazard events over the long term.

To make building damage assessment more effective and more accurate, a systematic process to standardize assessment data is needed. Additionally, to ensure that data are correctly assessed and collected, a standard protocol implemented in damage assessment activities is vitally needed. This study presents a proposed hurricane damage assessment process for residential buildings subjected to combined hurricane wind and flood loads, as well as a protocol that can be implemented into the process to standardize data collection and damage assessment.

The proposed process and protocol represent the first comprehensive building damage data assessment and collection process in the literature. Implementation of this process will aid in improving building data collection and assessment after hurricane events, which will result in improved data for a better understanding of building performance. Long-term implementation of this process will provide insight about the performance of multiple buildings subjected to various levels of hazard. This knowledge will facilitate reassessment of the level of loss experienced in hurricane events, and will provide needed data for the development of enhanced performance-based design standards and building codes, which will lead to more reliable building performance.

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