Wind & Tornado Resources

Wind Mitigation Options

  • Install hurricane shutters to protect windows and glass doors. Gable end roofs are more susceptible to high wind than other roof types. If you have a gable end roof, add bracings to reinforce the roof.
  • Consider fastening the roof to the walls with hurricane straps.
  • Reinforce garage doors and double-entry doors to prevent failure under wind pressure. Garage doors can be reinforced with girts and by strengthening the glider wheel tracks. Double-entry doors can be reinforced with a heavy-duty dead bolt, adding slide bolts on one of the doors, and using longer hinge attachments on the door and frame.
  • Maintain your property. Anything from loose shingles to trees can become a windborne missile. The distance between your home and any tree should be greater than a full-grown tree’s height.

FEMA Releases Resources for the Wind Resistant Provisions of the 2021 International Codes

November 2, 2021

The provisions of the International Codes aim to ensure that structures can adequately resist wind forces.  FEMA has contributed to the development of the International Codes since the first edition was published in 2000, up to and including the latest 2021 edition.

FEMA is pleased to announce three new resources that summarize the wind resistant provisions of the 2021 International Codes.  These documents provide guidance on the wind resistant provisions in the building codes for property owners, engineers, design professionals, building codes officials and the general public.

For more of FEMA’s wind resistant building code resources, visit:


Building Science – High Winds Publications

FEMA Building Science has developed publications and guidance to assist communities in making their buildings more resilient against the impacts of high winds. It is recommended that communities located in areas prone to high winds follow the guidance provided by FEMA to increase the resilience of buildings and structures.

Following FEMA guidance results in less damages and keeps occupants safer during a high wind event. Along with increasing the resilience of buildings, it is important that communities at risk of tornados follow other FEMA recommendations such as creating safe rooms to ensure the safety of community members.

Link to FEMA’s High Wind Publications


FEMA Building Science Resources to Assist with Reconstruction After an Extreme-Wind Event

December 9, 2020

FEMA has produced numerous publications detailing best practices for natural hazard mitigation associated with extreme-wind impacts.  This Fact Sheet summarizes a few of the readily available publications and resources that can be used by homeowners, as well as design and construction professionals, during reconstruction following extreme-wind events.

Link to the informative Fact Sheet –


Overview of FEMA P-804 | Wind Retrofit Guide for Residential Buildings

May 31, 2019

Protecting your property from high winds can involve a variety of actions, from inspecting and maintaining your building to installing protective devices.  Most of these actions, especially those that affect the exterior shell of your building, should be carried out by qualified maintenance staff or professional contractors licensed to work in your state, county, or city.  For buildings with Exterior Insulation Finishing System (EIFS) walls, a type of wall often used for commercial buildings, one example of wind protection is inspecting and maintaining the walls.

Link to the two-page overview –


Guidelines for Wind Vulnerability Assessments of Existing Critical Facilities

October 2019

FEMA’s Building Science Branch Releases Guidelines for Wind Vulnerability Assessments of Existing Critical Facilities, a manual for design professionals.

Hurricanes Irma and Maria in Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands, as well as other recent storms including Hurricane Michael in Florida, resulted in extensive wind damage to critical facilities.  FEMA Building Science, Region II, and DR-4339, in coordination with partners and subject matter experts, has developed FEMA P-2062: Guidelines for Wind Vulnerability Assessments of Existing Critical Facilities. The manual incorporates observations and lessons learned from recent and past hurricanes, current building code requirements, and other historic high wind events.

The purpose of this manual is to provide design professionals with guidelines for assessing the vulnerability of critical facilities to wind pressure, wind-borne debris, and wind-driven rain.  The guidelines apply to critical facilities both within and outside hurricane-prone regions as well as to critical facilities in tornado-prone regions.

The results of an assessment can be used by building owners; design professionals; entities that award repair, reconstruction, or mitigation grants; as well as state, local, tribal, and territorial government agencies developing mitigation plans.


New Three-Dimensional Roof Snowdrifts Design Guide

October 2019

Following a series of heavy snow and wind events in February of 2015, a FEMA team assessed four partial school building collapses in the Greater Boston area.  In all four cases, the partial collapses were due to roof snowdrift loading.

When following the current ASCE 7 minimum load requirements for three-dimensional snow drifts, the FEMA team observed and documented that in two cases 3-D drifts cannot be determined.  In this new design guide, FEMA provides guidance for determining 3-D roof snowdrift loads through design examples.   The procedures identified are consistent with the intersecting drift provisions expected in the 2022 edition of ASCE 7.  In the interim until the published revisions, these provisions are intended to serve as best practice guidance for design professionals.

The Three-Dimensional Roof Snowdrifts Design Guide is available here.


Asphalt Shingle Roofing for High-Wind Regions

May 2018

The purpose of this Recovery Advisory is to recommend practices for installing asphalt roof shingles that will enhance wind resistance in high-wind regions. For the purpose of this advisory, a high-wind region is considered to be an area where the basic (design) wind speed for Risk Category II buildings (as defined in American Society of Civil Engineers [ASCE] 7, Minimum Design Loads and Associated Criteria for Buildings and Other Structures) is greater than 115 miles per hour. The primary audience for this advisory includes contractors and design professionals, but the practices presented here may also be helpful for homeowners and other building owners.  Download the Asphalt Shingle Roofing for High-Wind Regions.


Multi-Hazard Mitigation and Design Concepts: Wind, Flood, and Earthquake Training Videos

June 2014

FEMA is pleased to announce that the Multi-Hazard Mitigation and Design Concepts: Wind, Flood, and Earthquake Training Videos (FEMA P-940CD) is now available from the FEMA Publications Warehouse. Educating disaster workforces and the people who live in at-risk communities about natural hazards and the ways to mitigate risk is an important part of the FEMA mission. The new FEMA P-940CD presents three videos based on webinars abridged from the FEMA 4-day training course E312, Fundamentals of Building Science—Multi-Hazard Mitigation and Design Concepts. Each video explains the hazard (earthquake, wind, and flood) and the hazard-related damage, and provides users with common sense tools to assist with specific mitigation work.

Training tools such as FEMA P-940CD support the FEMA mission and the mission of FEMA disaster-specific programs, including the NFIP and the National Earthquake Hazards Reduction Program (NEHRP). Under NEHRP, FEMA is responsible for developing effective earthquake risk reduction tools and promoting their implementation, as well as supporting the development of disaster-resistant building codes and standards. The earthquake video in FEMA P-940CD begins with a brief introduction illustrated by a recent earthquake event. The video then discusses the hazards that can arise from seismic events, the types of earthquake damage commonly seen in the building environment, and seismic design basics. The video also discusses how buildings resist earthquakes and the seismic design process for new and existing construction. The target audiences for FEMA P-940CD are the FEMA disaster workforce, State and local community disaster mitigation, response, and recovery professionals, and people living in areas with a high risk of earthquake, flood, or wind.

To order your copy of FEMA P-940CD from the FEMA Publications Warehouse, call 1-800-480-2520 or fax your request to 1-240-699-0525, FEMA Publication Order Form.


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