Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)


Mechanical and Civil Engineering

First Advisor

Jean-Paul Pinelli

Second Advisor

Nakin Suksawang

Third Advisor

Steven Lazarus

Fourth Advisor

Ashok Pandit


Hurricanes are a main cause of economic losses in many parts of the world, including the state of Florida. They affect the exterior, interior, and the contents of residential buildings. The damage of the interior can be as much as half of the total damage, but the estimation of the interior damage is still somewhat crude. Most damage models estimate interior damage as a percentage of the exterior damage, or through simple relationships, that relate the height of water ingress in the building to the interior damage. The current version of the Commercial Low-Rise Residential vulnerability model (CLR) of the Florida Public Hurricane Loss Model (FPHLM), v6.2 uses this simple relationship, but the new model, which this thesis presents, is a test-based model. This new methodology is used for interior damage estimation, which takes into account the physical mechanisms of hurricane-induced interior damage. The method incorporates the results of large-scale tests to quantify the water propagation and distribution from component to component in the interior of the building. The thesis describes the methodology and presents the resulting building, contents, and time-related expenses vulnerability curves.