Mission Areas

Natural Hazards

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Costs and consequences of natural hazards can be enormous; each year more people and infrastructure are at risk. We develop and apply hazards science to help protect U.S. safety, security, and economic well being. These scientific observations, analyses, and research are crucial for the Nation to become more resilient to natural hazards.

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Filter Total Items: 138
Date published: November 7, 2017
Status: Active

USGS Flood Inundation Mapper Usability Study

Making user-friendly interfaces.

Date published: December 5, 2016

National Assessment of Storm-Induced Coastal Change Hazards - Hurricane Sandy

As Hurricane Sandy moved northward along the U.S. Atlantic coast in October 2012, USGS scientists worked to determine where and how the storm’s waves and surge might dramatically reshape the beaches and dunes that stand between the storm and coastal developments.

Date published: September 2, 2016

Hawaii Tsunami Messaging

SAFRR brings together tsunami and communication experts to discuss potential changes to safety messages, based on improved scientific understanding of Hawaii's tsunami hazard.

Date published: September 1, 2016

Tsunami Awareness Campaign

Students at Art Center College of Design learned about tsunamis from SAFRR partners in natural science, social science, and emergency management, then designed a fun, engaging, multi-faceted awareness campaign.

Date published: June 9, 2016
Status: Completed

The First Sue Nami

Collaboration among SAFRR, Art Center College of Design, and other partners produced this tsunami awareness video, targeted for the 18-34 year old audience.

Date published: April 13, 2016

Understanding Coastal Change

Scientists perform a range of studies that document, assess, and model coastal change, risk, and vulnerability. Studies include historical shoreline change, the geologic structure and history of coastal regions, sediment supply and transport, sea-level rise, and how extreme storm events affect rates and impacts of coastal change.

Date published: April 13, 2016

Geologic Hazards and Catastrophic Events

We study the distribution and hazard potential of coastal and submarine events such as earthquakes and submarine landslides and associated tsunami potential, hurricane induced coastal inundation, extreme storms, sea-level rise and oil and gas spills. We also model development to help evaluate and forecast coastal hazard probability and occurrence.

Date published: April 13, 2016

Ocean Resources for America's Needs

Our scientists conduct research studies focused on geologic mapping, sampling and understanding of mineral and energy resources and studies of the geologic setting and processes to inform renewable energy development offshore.

Date published: April 13, 2016

Coastal and Marine Ecosystem Science

We bring together multidisciplinary expertise focused on developing tools and models to improve understanding of how healthy ecosystems function as well as how they respond to environmental changes and human impacts including ecosystem restoration. Research studies address coral reef, coastal wetland, benthic habitat and groundwater resources.

Date published: April 12, 2016

Hurricane Sandy Spatial Data Mapping Application

USGS scientists at the Wetland and Aquatic Research Center and other offices received funding for studies related to habitat change, storm surge and ecological modeling, migratory bird impacts, and other topics of interest. The Hurricane Sandy Spatial Data Mapping Application showcases the data and analytical products resulting from these studies.

Date published: March 17, 2016

Volcano Hazards Assessments Help Mitigate Disasters

The Volcano Hazards Program develops long-range volcano hazards assessments. These includes a summary of the specific hazards, their impact areas, and a map showing ground-hazard zones. The assessments are also critical for planning long-term land-use and effective emergency-response measures, especially when a volcano begins to show signs of unrest.

Date published: March 14, 2016
Status: Completed

Earthquake Early Warning (EEW) Support

An existing technological capability (not yet implemented in CA) for providing a few seconds of advance notification before arrival of earthquake-generated seismic waves causing ground shaking, with current efforts underway to move forward with providing users with the means to utilize the system for warning and preparedness action plans.

Filter Total Items: 96
Date published: March 4, 2016

Latest Earthquakes Map and List

View recent events or search for past earthquakes. Optimized for mobile and desktop.

Date published: March 4, 2016

Research Data and Products

USGS earthquake data including real-time and historic earthquake catalogs, GIS data, hazards, and more.

Date published: March 4, 2016

Software for Landslide Assessments and Modeling

USGS software for landslide assessments and modeling that include SLAMMER, TRIGRS, PTCOUNT and more.

Date published: March 4, 2016

International Charter

It aims at providing a unified system of space data acquisition and delivery to those affected by natural or manmade disasters through Authorized Users. Each member agency has committed resources to support the provisions of the Charter and thus is helping to mitigate the effects of disasters on human life and property.

Date published: March 4, 2016

DOI Emergency Management

DOI has a department-wide policy relating to emergency management that can be referenced in the Department's Manual in Series: 41-EMERGENCY MANAGEMENT ‎(Parts 900-910)‎.

Date published: March 4, 2016

Station Information and Operations

Zoom in on an area to view all seismic network operation stations on the interactive map.

Date published: March 4, 2016

Seismogram Displays

This interactive map displays seismographic activity. Click on a red seismogram icon or select a region from list list.

Date published: March 4, 2016

IRIS Data Management Center

Contains archived data from the Global Seismic Network.

Date published: March 4, 2016

Wildfires: GEOMAC

Maps of current fire locations and perimeters in the conterminous 48 States and Alaska.

Date published: March 4, 2016

LANDFIRE Data Distribution

Map interface to view and download LANDFIRE data sets, receive alerts and notifications.

Date published: March 4, 2016

Current Alerts for U.S. Volcanoes

Volcano-alert notifications are produced by Volcano Observatory scientists based on analysis of data from monitoring networks, direct observations, and satellite sensors. They are issued for both increasing and decreasing volcanic activity and include text about the nature of the unrest or eruption and about potential or current hazards and likely outcomes.

Date published: March 4, 2016

Volcano Notification Service (VNS)

The Volcano Notification Service (VNS) is a free service that sends you notification emails about volcanic activity happening at U.S. monitored volcanoes. You can customize the VNS to deliver notifications for certain volcanoes or a range of volcanoes, and you can also choose the notification types you want to receive.

Filter Total Items: 2,058
June 5, 2018

Kīlauea Volcano — Tracking Active Lava Flows

U.S. Geological survey scientists use fly-overs to track active lava flows. 

June 5, 2018

Kīlauea Volcano — Tracking Active Lava Flows (Audio-described)

U.S. Geological survey scientists use fly-overs to track active lava flows. 

A lava fountain forming a lava channel
June 5, 2018

Kīlauea Volcano — Lava Fountaining

Lava fountaining continues at fissure 8, although overnight crews reported reduced heights of 40-50 m (130-164 ft). The fountain has built a 35 m (115 ft) high cone, and an actively-growing spatter rampart on its eastern side. The ...

Aerial view of lava filling previous are of Kapoho Bay
June 5, 2018

Kīlauea Volcano — Kapoho Bay Filled with Lava

As of the morning of June 5, the fissure 8 lava flow front had completely filled Kapoho Bay.

plume rising from the crater
June 5, 2018

Kīlauea Volcano — Halema‘uma‘u Crater

Morning view of Halema'uma'u and the Kīlauea Caldera from the Kīlauea overlook. Heavy steam dominates the view, and strong winds are blowing the ...

Aerial of Halema`uma`u crater
June 5, 2018

Kīlauea Volcano — Halema‘uma‘u Crater Aerial

HVO scientists captured this aerial view of a much-changed Halema‘uma‘u during their overflight of the summit this afternoon. Explosions and collapse within Halema‘uma‘u have enlarged the crater (foreground) that previously hosted the summit ...

June 4, 2018

USGS Status Update of Kīlauea Volcano - June 4, 2018

USGS Hawaiian Volcano Observatory Update of Kīlauea Volcano for June 4, 2018. On Camera: Jessica Ball, USGS Volcanologist.

June 4, 2018

Kīlauea Volcano — Lava Entering Kapoho Bay

Video from helicopter overflight of Kīlauea Volcano's lower East Rift Zone on June 4, 2018, shows lava from ...

side by side of thermal images
June 4, 2018

Kīlauea Volcano — Fissure 8 Thermal Images

What a difference four days makes! These thermal images of fissure 8 fountains erupting on...

Ocean entry at Kapoho Bay
June 4, 2018

Kīlauea Volcano — Kapaho Bay Ocean Entry

Video from helicopter overflight of Kīlauea Volcano's lower East Rift Zone on June 4, 2018, shows lava from fissure 8...

June 4, 2018

Kīlauea Volcano — Video Compilation of Kapoho Bay Ocean Entry

This short video compilation shows conditions at Kapoho Bay during a helicopter overflight on June 4, 2018, around 6:15 a.m. HST and again around 1:38 p.m. HST. By 6:15 a.m., ...

Filter Total Items: 337
Date published: November 12, 2017

Magnitude 7.3 Earthquake Iran/Iraq Border

The USGS has up-to-date details on the November 12, 2017 event.

Date published: November 8, 2017

Eyes on the Coast—Video Cameras Help Forecast Coastal Change

Coastal communities count on beaches for recreation and for protection from large waves, but beaches are vulnerable to threats such as erosion by storms and flooding. Whether beaches grow, shrink, or even disappear depends in part on what happens just offshore. How do features like shifting sandbars affect waves, currents, and the movement of sand from the beach to offshore and back?

Date published: November 6, 2017

Video shot from drones yields details about changing landslide on California’s Big Sur coast

On October 12, USGS drones collected video footage of the Mud Creek landslide, which buried California State Highway 1 under a third-of-a-mile-wide mass of rock and dirt on May 20.

Date published: October 25, 2017

Biologist starting over after Hurricane Irma damages home, office, research site

Coral reef expert Caroline Rogers was the only USGS employee in the Virgin Islands when the Category 5 storm hit.

Date published: October 20, 2017

Exploring Gas Hydrates as a Future Energy Source

In the past decade, the development of the Barnett, Eagle Ford, Marcellus, and other shales has dominated the national consciousness regarding natural gas. But in Alaska, another form of natural gas has been the focus of research for decades—methane hydrate.

Date published: October 19, 2017

U.S. and Canadian Scientists Explore Major Undersea Earthquake Fault

An international team of scientists just finished probing the depths of the Pacific Ocean offshore of Alaska and British Columbia, to better understand the Queen Charlotte-Fairweather Fault. During the past century, the 700-mile-long fault has generated at least half a dozen major earthquakes, and future shocks threaten coastal communities in both the United States and Canada.

Date published: October 18, 2017

Are You Ready to ShakeOut on October 19?

Do you know what to do the moment the ground starts shaking? Drop, Cover, and Hold On!

Date published: October 18, 2017

EarthWord–Gas Hydrate

No, this EarthWord isn’t how natural gas quenches its thirst-it just sounds like it...

Date published: October 10, 2017

USGS Tracks Evolution of a Fire Island Hurricane-Made Breach

A study finds that although the “wilderness breach” created by Hurricane Sandy in 2012 has reached a relatively stable size and location, the channel and shoals will keep changing in response to weather. Related research shows the breach isn’t likely to increase storm-tide flooding in Great South Bay.

Date published: October 6, 2017

Hurricane Nate Will Affect Most Gulf Beaches, USGS Projects

Editor’s note: This story was updated at 2 pm Saturday, October 7. For the latest graphic showing USGS predictions of the sandy coastal areas likely to be affected by Hurricane Nate, click here.

More information about USGS science in response to Hurricane Nate is at www.usgs.gov/nate

Date published: September 26, 2017

Hurricane Maria expected to alter North Carolina, Virginia and Maryland Beaches

To learn more about USGS’ role providing science to decision makers before, during and after Hurricane Maria, visit the USGS Hurricane Maria page at https://www.usgs.gov/maria.

Date published: September 22, 2017

USGS Continues Response to Four Hurricanes

As thousands of people remain displaced by or are recovering from one of the four hurricanes that have affected the United States the past month, the U.S. Geological Survey is in the field providing science that will help with recovery from these historic hurricanes and with preparing for the next storm.