This page describes the two levels of analysis which can be performed with Hazus: Basic and Advanced. The page lays out the analysis levels in order of increasing complexity and is intended to provide Hazus users with a differentiation of the two analysis levels..
Hazus provides two levels of analysis based on the level of effort and expertise employed by the user. Users can improve the accuracy of Hazus loss estimates by furnishing more detailed data about their community or engineering expertise on the building inventory. The following describes the information and expertise needed for each level:
A basic estimate of earthquake, flood and hurricane wind losses is produced based on national databases and expert-based analysis parameters included in the Hazus software. This is commonly referred to as an "out-of-the-box" or "default" loss estimate. FEMA's Basic Hazus course (E313) enables a user to run the basic loss estimation. In the basic level of analysis, Hazus identifies the hazard. So although there may be some basic data downloaded by the user (e.g. elevation), Hazus generates the hazard.
More accurate loss estimates are produced by including detailed information on local hazard conditions and/or by replacing the national default inventories with more accurate local inventories of buildings, essential facilities and other infrastructure. Although there is no standard way to perform an advanced study, priority should be given to information that better defines the hazard. Sensitivity studies can guide the user in focusing time and resources on the type of information that will most improve the loss estimate for their study region. There are many professionals that can assist with an advanced analysis. These include geologists and hydrologists for improving hazard map data, GIS professionals for improving the national default inventories and engineers to improve upon the classifications of building types and vulnerability. Some background in loss estimation and experience in using Hazus will normally be required for a Level 2 analysis.