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Hurricane Katrina inflicted incredible damage to residential buildings in the Gulf Coast region. Nearly a quarter of million homes in New Orleans alone were devastated by a combination of flooding and wind.

A fairly substantial percentage of the homes suffered damage primarily due to lack of proper design for wind resistance. After this major calamity, Louisiana adopted stricter building codes. However, major concerns exist on both the adequacy of the building codes and their implementation. The critical role that the home insurance industry can play to improve the quality of residential home building stock in the nation is highlighted. This presentation provides an overview of the various types of damages suffered to residential homes during the hurricane and lesson learned from these damages. The challenges involved in design of disaster resilient homes and the approach the designers and builders need to take to mitigate potential damage are discussed. The need to utilize emerging technologies to enhance the structural resilience of homes in extreme wind events will also be discussed.