Natural Disaster Recovery

Helping communities assess damages and economic impacts

RDN assesses the direct and indirect economic impacts of natural disasters and works with FEMA to execute recovery programs

RDN recruits and prepares on-call professionals in support of the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s (FEMA) Public Assistance Program. When a natural disaster strikes, our team of financial analysts, cost estimators, general planners, and other specialists are ready to lend a helping hand. Our personnel advise and work alongside FEMA employees to create and review damage estimates with local officials and inspect work for compliance with FEMA requirements.

RDN also has expertise in assessing the regional economic impacts of natural disasters and other catastrophic events. These studies can be a valuable tool for decision makers who need to determine how best to allocate community resources and chart a path towards recovery. For example, RDN conducted on-site assessments of the cost, quality, and availability of housing for US military service members immediately following Hurricane Katrina (2005) and Hurricane Maria (2017). Our analyses of current and projected market conditions helped guide installation planning in New Orleans and Puerto Rico. Similarly, our on-site research and reports on the impacts of Hurricane Michael (2018) substantiated the need for a temporary increase in housing allowances for military members stationed near Panama City, FL.

RDN knows first-hand how natural disasters can disrupt local communities. Shortly after the tragic Thomas Fire and Montecito Debris Flow in Santa Barbara County, we produced a preliminary estimate of the direct impacts on the local economy, including the lost wages and tourism that resulted from the extended closure of Highway 101. One year later, we released detailed studies on the debris flow’s lasting impacts on our local housing market, including the pace of reconstruction of damaged or destroyed properties.