HAZUS: HA-86 South Sawatch Fault Earthquake Event Report


Imagine an earthquake centered near your city or town. Where would the most damage occur? How much economic loss would there be? How many casualties? The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) developed a free software package (HAZUS) with the primary purpose to simulate the effects of earthquakes and other natural disasters in order to estimate potential regional damages and loss. These estimates may be used by local, state and regional officials to 1) plan and stimulate risk-reduction efforts and 2) to prepare emergency response and recovery action plans. HA-86D

The full set of individual county- and fault-based HAZUS reports are also available as a single ZIP-file download.

This series of simulations are based on our current knowledge of historical earthquakes, their locations, and estimated magnitudes. Each HAZUS historical-earthquake-based ZIP file includes a number of PDF files of individual reports that may or may not include:

2005-series simulations

  • Citation: Heerschap, Lauren, and Matthew L. Morgan. “HA-86 HAZUS 2005: South Sawatch Fault Earthquake Event Report.” Earthquake Simulation. Golden, CO: Colorado Geological Survey, 2006.
  • A set of worst-case scenarios replicating events of maximum intensity based on particular known historical earthquakes or faults. The simulations are based on either the Western US (WUS) or Central and Eastern US (CEUS) attenuation functions (see the USGS Open-File Report 2008-1128 for details). May also include statewide maps showing potential peak ground acceleration.

2013-series simulations

  • Citation: Morgan, Matthew L., and F. Scot Fitzgerald. “HA-86 HAZUS 2013: South Sawatch Fault Earthquake Event Report.” Earthquake Simulation. Golden, CO: Colorado Geological Survey, 2013.
  • A global summary report that tabulates losses based on the stated scenario conditions

The PDF files may be navigated using the built-in bookmarks feature that may be seen to the left of an Adobe Acrobat (Reader) window.


The estimates of social and economic impacts contained in these reports were produced using HAZUS loss estimation methodology software which is based on 2005 scientific and engineering knowledge. There are uncertainties inherent in any loss estimation technique. Therefore, there may be significant differences between the modeled results contained in this report and the actual social and economic losses following a specific earthquake. These results may be improved by using enhanced inventory, geotechnical, and observed ground motion data. Monetary values are in either 2006 or 2013 dollars, depending on the date of the simulation (which appears on the report cover sheet).

In the general earthquake model, the probabilistic ground motion and earthquake faults are developed from data supplied by the U.S. Geological Survey in Golden, Colorado. See Summary of Databases for full HAZUS database information.