Hazard Risk Assessment

Hazard risk assessments determine potential impacts to people, the economy, and built & natural environments. The risk assessment provides the foundation for identifying  mitigation strategies.

Benefits & Problems Addressed:

Foundation for action: The risk assessment provides the foundation for the rest of the mitigation  process to identify & prioritize risk reduction actions.

General preparedness: Assessing assets & priorities extends to routine activities in a community for land use and comprehensive planning, 

Tips & Techniques

Four Step Process: (1) Describe hazards, (2) Identify Community Assets, (3) Analyze risks, (4) Summarize vulnerabilities

Hazard Types (Natural):  Drought, Dust & Destabilized Soil, Earthquake, Extreme Heat, Flooding (inclusing surge and inundation), Hailstorms, Windstorms, Infectious Disease Outbreak, Lightning,  Sinkholes, Severe Winter Storm, Tornadoes, Wildfire

Hazard Types (Technical & Man-made):  Aircraft Accident/Incident, Dam Failure, Terrorism, Hazardous Material Releases, Energy/Fuel Shortage, Water Transmission Failure 

Mapping: Include maps of (1) geographic range of each hazard , (2) critical assets & economic centers (3) future development, (4) 

Factors affecting risk:  Frequency,, impact severity, predictability & warning time, economic disruption, geographic extent, possible loss of life and property. other locally-reletive impacts. Administratively, factors include technical needs, staff training, cost, legal requirements.

Social vulnerability: In addition to physical and economic risks, include social vulnerabliity of community members & organizations that do not have resources to cope with and recover from disasters. 

Examples & Resources

FEMA’s Local Mitigation Planning Handbook

Beyond the Basics

UNC - Community Based Vulnerability Assessment 

Image: Association of Bay Area GOvernments (ABAG)