Computer Software Prepares First Responders for Disaster
While disaster planning may not keep an event from occurring, it can mitigate its effects. Effective disaster planning depends not only on accurate and timely data but also on the ability to make the data meaningful. The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) offers a free risk-assessment software program to help emergency planners contend with natural disasters. The program, Hazards U.S. Multi- Hazard (HAZUS-MH), harnesses the power of geographic information systems (GIS) to estimate the probability and potential consequences of earthquakes, hurricanes, and floods.