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Disaster & failure studies

Disaster & failure studies look at building and infrastructure performance and emergency response and evacuation procedures in disaster situations.

Buildings, bridges, and other man-made structures are not supposed to fall down. But sometimes they do, and for different reasons: fires, earthquakes, high winds, errors in design and construction, flaws in materials, and even terrorist attacks.

When disaster and failure events cause, or pose the potential for, substantial loss of life, the NIST Disaster and Failure Studies Program provides a platform for research into building and infrastructure performance and emergency response and evacuation procedures.

By understanding the technical causes leading to structural or response failures and then making that information public, NIST engineers and researchers strive to prevent similar failures in the future. Studies conducted by NIST have led to significant changes in practices, standards, and codes to enhance the health and safety of the American public.

News and Updates

Industry Impacts

Structural Resilience of Infrastructure

The best way to prevent buildings, bridges and other structures from collapsing—whether because of natural forces, human error or malicious attacks—is to learn

Projects and Programs

NEHRP Extramural Research

Research performed by the EL Earthquake Engineering Group (2EG) consists of a combination of in-house and extramural research. Policy related work is awarded to

Publications