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  • FEMA Disasters 1993-2000

    This publication is the second part of a 3 publication set detailing the origins, accomplishments and future plans of FEMA. This publication focuses on FEMA's disaster recovery efforts from 1993-2000.
  • FEMA's New Directions

    This publication is the third part of a 3 publication set detailing the origins, accomplishments and future plans of FEMA. This publication focuses on FEMA's plans for the new millennium.
  • Installing Seismic Restraints for Mechanical Equipment

    This illustrated guide (available for download from shows equipment installers how to attach mechanical equipment to a building to minimize earthquake damage. Many examples using anchoring and seismic-restraint devices are included. The guide begins with a list of various types of equipment and includes a chart that identifies the equipment, the recommended configuration for restraint, and the type of attachment needed. The second section provides examples of attachment types with instructions for installing equipment in different configurations. The third section provides examples of anchors. The fourth section presents special cases. Step-by-step instructions and special precautions are given for each type of equipment, the method for installing the equipment, and the attachment type needed. The guide does not cover non-building structural framing required to elevate equipment above the floor.
  • Planning for Post-Disaster Recovery and Reconstruction

    “Planning for Post-Disaster Recovery and Reconstruction” (FEMA 421) introduces community planners to policies for rebuilding and recovery after disasters and provides guidance on how to plan for post-disaster reconstruction. FEMA 421 also guides development of a natural hazards element as part of a local, general, or comprehensive plan. This document thus equips planners and others involved in post-disaster reconstruction at all levels of government with the tools needed to create (or re-create) communities that will withstand natural disasters. Developed in partnership with the American Planning Association (APA), Chapters 3, 4, and 5 are available to download from the FEMA Library. Complete copies may also be ordered through the APA Planners Book Service ( or by telephone at (312) 786-6344 (costs may apply).
  • FEMA 426, Reference Manual to Mitigate Potential Terrorist Attacks Against Buildings (2003)

    This manual* provides guidance to the building science community of architects and engineers, to reduce physical damage to buildings, related infrastructure, and people caused by terrorist assaults. The manual presents incremental approaches that can be implemented over time to decrease the vulnerability of buildings to terrorist threats. Many of the recommendations can be implemented quickly and cost-effectively. NOTE: This publication is available free to Local and State government staff. All other interested parties must order by special request through the Government Printing Office (GPO). *The manual is currently being updated.
  • FEMA 427, Primer for Design of Commercial Buildings to Mitigate Terrorist Attacks (2003)

    This primer introduces a series of concepts that can help building designers, owners, and State and local governments mitigate the threat of hazards resulting from terrorist attacks on new buildings. FEMA 427 specifically addresses four high-population, private-sector building types: commercial office, retail, multifamily residential, and light industrial. This manual contains extensive qualitative design guidance for limiting or mitigating the effects of terrorist attacks, focusing primarily on explosions, but also addressing chemical, biological, and radiological attacks. NOTE: This publication is available free to Local and State government staff. All other interested parties must order by special request through the Government Printing Office (GPO).
  • FEMA 428, Primer for Design Safe Schools Projects in Case of Terrorist Attacks (2003)

    The purpose of this primer is to provide the design community and school administrators with the basic principles and techniques to design a school safe from terrorist attacks. NOTE: This publication is available free to Local and State government staff. All other interested parties must order by special request through the Government Printing Office (GPO).
  • FEMA 429, Insurance, Finance, and Regulation Primer for Terrorism Risk Management in Buildings (2003)

    The purpose of this primer is to introduce the building insurance, finance, and regulatory communities to the issue of terrorism risk management in buildings and the tools currently available to manage the risks. FEMA 429 provides information related to insurance, the Terrorism Risk Insurance Act of 2002, and highlights current building regulations related to terrorism risk, due diligence, and vulnerability. The manual also includes a Building Security Checklist categorized by data collection, attack delivery methods, and attack mechanism parameters. NOTE: This publication is available free to Local and State government staff. All other interested parties can obtain this publication via online download only.

  • FEMA P-431, Tornado Protection: Selecting Refuge Area in Buildings, Second Edition (2009)

    This booklet presents information that will aid qualified architects and engineers in the identification of the best available refuge areas in existing buildings. The Best Available Refuge Area (BARA) Checklist may also be downloaded from the link on this page. 

  • Building a Disaster-Resistant University

    Building A Disaster-Resistant University is both a how-to guide and a distillation of the experiences of six universities and colleges that have been working to become more disaster-resistant. This guide provides basic information designed for institutions just getting started, as well as concrete ideas, suggestions, and practical experiences for institutions that have already begun to take steps to becoming more disaster-resistant.
  • FEMA 455, Handbook for Rapid Visual Screening of Buildings to Evaluate Terrorism Risks (2009)

    This manual provides guidance for building inspectors, architects and engineers on quickly and effectively determining what, if any, are the risks posed to the building by natural hazards, terrorist attacks and other threats to the building's structural integrity.

  • FEMA 489, Hurricane Ivan in Alabama and Florida: Observations, Recommendations and Technical Guidance (2005)

    This report summarizes the observations, conclusions, and recommendations that resulted from post-disaster assessments sponsored by FEMA in response to Florida's 2004 hurricane season. During the 2004 season, the State was struck by Hurricanes Charley, Frances, Jeanne, and Ivan. More than 10 rapid-response teams and two Mitigation Assessment Teams were deployed to document observations and provide recommendations concerning building performance under the effects of hurricane winds and hurricane-related flooding. The information presented in this report is intended to assist the States of Florida and Alabama, communities, businesses, and individuals in the reconstruction process. This information will also help reduce future wind and water damage and promote the economic well-being of the nation.

    A Power Point presentation of the MAT report can be downloaded in PDF format, by going to

  • The National Dam Safety Program Research Needs Workshop: Dam Spillways

    This workshop report documents the state of practice concerning cost-effective techniques for the enlargement, modification, inspection, monitoring, and maintenance of dam service and emergency spillways. The report discusses dam safety research needs related to dam spillways, i.e., the short-term and long-term needs of the federal and non-federal dam safety community, and recommends a course of action to address those research needs.
  • The National Dam Safety Program Research Needs Workshop: Spillway Gates

    One of the outcomes of the Folsom tainter gate failure was the recognition of the need to revisit the issues related to gate performance and safety. This workshop report documents lessons learned from the Folsom tainter gate failure and applies those lessons across the broad spectrum of spillway gates. The report provides recommendations for future action and serves as a reference for regulatory agencies as they refine their requirements in this area.
  • Federal Guidelines for Dam Safety: Earthquake Analyses and Design of Dams

    These guidelines provide the basic framework for the earthquake design and evaluation of dams. The general philosophy and principles for each part of the framework are described in sufficient detail to achieve a reasonable degree of uniform application among the federal agencies involved in the planning, design, construction, operation, maintenance, and regulation of dams. This document includes general guidelines for specifying design earthquake loadings (for design or safety evaluation) and for performing seismic analyses for the design of new dams (for evaluating the safety of existing dams or modifying existing dams). The guidelines are presented in four parts: selection of design or safety evaluation for earthquakes; characterization of ground motions; seismic analyses of the dams and foundations; and evaluation of structural adequacy for earthquake loading. The CD-ROM, FEMA 93CD, 2005, contains all of the Federal Guidelines for Dam Safety: FEMA 64; FEMA 65; FEMA 93; FEMA 94; FEMA 148; and FEMA 333.
  • Seismic Considerations for Communities at Risk

    This publication is a companion volume to the 1994 edition of NEHRP Recommended Provisions for Seismic Regulations for New Buildings. The publication provides individuals and community decision-makers with information to assess seismic risk, make informed decisions about seismic safety in their communities, and determine what can be done to mitigate risk. The publication includes information on the scope of earthquake risk in the U.S., the effects of earthquakes on buildings, how design can reduce earthquake effects, and the importance of seismic codes and the NEHRP Provisions. Also included are factors to consider when deciding whether and how to take action to reduce earthquake risk and suggestions for stimulating community action.
  • Societal Implications: Selected Readings

    These selected readings provide participants in the building process at the local, State, and regional levels with information on the most significant societal implications of adopting new or improved seismic regulations for new buildings. Included are papers on the estimated impact of the NEHRP Recommended Provisions on design and construction costs, seismic hazards in various areas of the U.S., seismic safety codes, current seismic hazard mitigation practices and programs, and recent seismic safety policy research. The book also contains an extensive bibliography, a list of information sources, and a glossary of terms.
  • FEMA P-85, Protecting Manufactured Homes from Floods and Other Hazards (2009)

    FEMA P-85 has been updated to reflect the requirements of the most current codes and standards and to provide a best practices approach in reducing damages from natural hazards. While the original version of FEMA 85 concentrated on flood and wind events, this version also addresses seismic hazards and recommends several multi-hazard resistant foundation designs. Designs are included for wood-framed foundations, conventional concrete and masonry pier foundations, and ground anchors. The ground anchor foundations are based on results from a series of first-of-its-kind saturated and dry soil anchor tests.
  • Federal Guidelines for Dam Safety

    These guidelines encourage strict safety standards in the practices and procedures employed by Federal agencies or required of dam owners regulated by the Federal agencies. The guidelines provide the most complete and authoritative statement available of the desired management practices for promoting dam safety and the welfare of the public. The guidelines apply to Federal practices for dams with a direct federal interest; the guidelines do not attempt to establish technical standards and are not intended to supplant or conflict with state or local government responsibilities for the safety of dams under their jurisdiction.

  • Technical Bulletin 1, Openings in Foundation Walls and Walls of Enclosures (2020)

    Provides guidance on the NFIP regulations concerning the requirement for openings in below-Base Flood Elevation foundation walls and walls of enclosures for buildings located in Zones A, AE, A1-A30, AR, AO, and AH.