Research leader

John Ginger
Prof John Ginger Research Leader
Dr David Henderson Research Leader

Research team

Mark Edwards
Mark Edwards Research Team
Martin Wehner Research Team
Dr Geoff Boughton Research Team
Daniel Smith
Dr Daniel Smith Research Team
Dr John Holmes Research Team
Korah Parackal
Dr Korah Parackal Research Team
Dr Hyeuk Ryu Research Team

End User representatives

Leesa Carson
Leesa Carson End-User
Duncan McLuckie End-User
Myles Fairbairn
Myles Fairbairn End-User
Ross Pritchard End-User
Elliott Simmons
Elliott Simmons End-User
Greg Howard
Greg Howard End-User
Greg Buckley End-User
Eamonn Lennon End-User

Student researchers

Korah Parackal
Dr Korah Parackal Student Reseacher
Dr Mitchell Humphreys Student Reseacher

The primary objective of this study was to identify vulnerable legacy house types across Australia and develop cost-effective retrofits for mitigating damage during windstorms. These evidence-based strategies will (a) aid policy formulation and decision making by Government and industry, and (b) provide guidelines detailing various options and benefits to homeowners and the industry for retrofitting typical at-risk houses in Australia. 

The final report presents an overview of the research approach used for this project including the selection of house types, the development of the VAWS software and the Internet-based guidelines. A case study is presented of the vulnerability and benefit cost assessment of one of the selected house types, with the complete set of results presented in the Appendices. These results show that tile roofed houses in cyclonic regions of Australia benefit the most from retrofitting for severe wind events. The benefit-cost ratios for these tile roof houses and other house types are expected to improve when accounting for intangible costs, which are currently not included in the analyses presented in this report. In addition, examples of the impacts and utilisation of this project including the Queensland Government Housing Resilience Program are also presented.

Read the final report here.

Year Type Citation
2021 Report Ginger, J. et al. Improving the resilience of existing housing to severe wind events - final project report. (Bushfire and Natural Hazards CRC, 2021).
2020 Report Parackal, K. et al. Improving the resilience of existing housing to severe wind events: annual report 2019-2020. (Bushfire and Natural Hazards CRC, 2020).
2019 Book Chapter Krupar, III, R. & Smith, D. J. Hurricane Risk 1, 199-214 (Springer, 2019).
2019 Conference Paper Parackal, K. et al. Modelling the vulnerability of a high-set house roof structure to windstorms using VAWS . Bushfire and Natural Hazards CRC Research Day AFAC19 (2019). at <https://knowledge.aidr.org.au/resources/australian-journal-of-emergency-management-monograph-series/>
2019 Report Henderson, D. et al. Improving the resilience of existing housing to severe wind events in Australia Annual Report 2017-2018. (Bushfire and Natural Hazards CRC, 2019).
2019 Report Parackal, K. et al. Model for assessing the vulnerability of Australian housing to windstorms - VAWS. (Bushfire and Natural Hazards CRC, 2019).
2019 Report Parackal, K., Ginger, J., Henderson, D. & Wehner, M. Community benefits of roof upgrades. (Bushfire and Natural Hazards CRC, 2019).
2019 Report Ginger, J. et al. Improving the resilience of existing housing to severe wind events - annual report 2018-19. (Bushfire and Natural Hazards CRC, 2019).
2019 Report Parackal, K., Ginger, J., Leblais, A. & Henderson, D. Rainwater ingress through residential sliding doors. (Bushfire and Natural Hazards CRC, 2019).
2019 Report Parackal, K., Ginger, J., Wehner, M. & Henderson, D. Retrofitting of a high-set Queensland house for wind loading. (Bushfire & Natural Hazards CRC, 2019).
2019 Report Henderson, D., Smith, D., Parackal, K. & Ginger, J. Analysis of damage surveys of houses and preliminary input of VAWs. (Bushfire and Natural Hazards CRC, 2019).
2018 Conference Paper Henderson, D., Smith, D. & Ginger, J. Large damage bills to buildings from cyclones can be reduced by small actions. AFAC18 (Bushfire and Natural Hazards CRC, 2018).
2018 Conference Paper Bates, J. Research proceedings from the 2018 Bushfire and Natural Hazards CRC and AFAC Conference. Bushfire and Natural Hazards CRC & AFAC annual conference 2017 (Bushfire and Natural Hazards CRC, 2018).
2018 Journal Article Jayasinghe, N., Ginger, J., Henderson, D. & Walker, G. Distribution of wind loads in metal-clad roofing structures. Journal of Structural Engineering 144, (2018).
2018 Journal Article Stewart, M., Ginger, J., Henderson, D. & Ryan, P. Fragility and climate impact assessment of contemporary housing roof sheeting failure due to extreme wind. Engineering Structures 117, 464-475 (2018).
2018 Journal Article Parackal, K., Ginger, J. & Henderson, D. Wind load fluctuations on roof batten to rafter/truss connections. Journal of Wind Engineering & Industrial Aerodynamics 175, (2018).
2018 Report Leblais, A. & Henderson, D. Simulated wind load strength testing of entrance doors. (Bushfire and Natural Hazards CRC, 2018).
2018 Report Leblais, A. & Henderson, D. Simulated wind load strength testing of soffits. (Bushfire and Natural Hazards CRC, 2018).
2017 Journal Article Smith, D., Krupar, III, R., Henderson, D. & Mason, M. S. Analysis of rapid damage assessment data following severe windstorm events. Australian Journal of Emergency Management 32, (2017).
2017 Report Kloetzke, T. et al. Severe wind hazard preliminary assessment: Tropical Cyclone Debbie, Whitsunday Coast, Queensland, Australia. (James Cook University, 2017). at <https://www.jcu.edu.au/__data/assets/pdf_file/0005/422951/TC-Debbie-Rapid-Assessment-Report_v8.pdf>
2017 Report Boughton, G. N. et al. Tropical Cyclone Debbie: damage to buildings in the Whitsunday Region. Technical report (James Cook University, Cyclone Testing Station) (James Cook University, 2017). at <https://www.jcu.edu.au/__data/assets/pdf_file/0009/461178/TC-Debbie-report.pdf>
2017 Report Henderson, D. et al. Improving the resilience of housing to severe wind events: annual project report 2016-17. (Bushfire and Natural Hazards CRC, 2017).
2016 Conference Paper Rumsewicz, M. Research proceedings from the 2016 Bushfire and Natural Hazards CRC and AFAC conference. Bushfire and Natural Hazards CRC & AFAC annual conference 2016 (Bushfire and Natural Hazards CRC, 2016).
2016 Conference Paper Harwood, J., Smith, D. J. & Henderson, D. Building community cyclone resilience through academic and community partnership. AFAC16 (Bushfire and Natural Hazards CRC, 2016).
2016 Journal Article Smith, D., Masters, F. J. & Chowdhury, A. G. Investigating a wind tunnel method for determining wind-induced loads on roofing tiles. Journal of Wind Engineering and Industrial Aerodynamics 155, 47-59 (2016).
2016 Journal Article Smith, D., McShane, C., Swinbourne, A. & Henderson, D. Towards effective mitigation strategies for severe wind events. The Australian Journal of Emergency Management 31, (2016).
2016 Journal Article Satheeskumar, N., Henderson, D., Ginger, J. & Wang, C. H. Wind uplift strength capacity variation in roof-to-wall connections of timber-framed houses. Journal of Architectural Engineering 22, (2016).
2016 Journal Article Leitch, C. J., Ginger, J. & Holmes, J. D. Wind loads on solar panels mounted parallel to pitched roofs, and acting on the underlying roof. Wind and Structures 22, 307-328 (2016).
2016 Report Smith, D. et al. Improving the resilience of existing housing to severe wind events: Annual project report 2015-2016. (Bushfire and Natural Hazards CRC, 2016).
2015 Conference Paper Rumsewicz, M. Research proceedings from the 2015 Bushfire and Natural Hazards CRC & AFAC conference. Bushfire and Natural Hazards CRC & AFAC annual conference 2015 (Bushfire and Natural Hazards CRC, 2015).
2015 Conference Paper Henderson, D. & Ginger, J. Improving the Resilience of Existing Housing to Severe Wind Events Conference Paper 2014. Bushfire and Natural Hazards CRC and AFAC Wellington Conference 2014 (2015).
2015 Journal Article Smith, D., Roueche, D., Thompson, A. P. & Prevatt, D. O. A vulnerability assessment tool for residential structures and extreme wind events. (2015).
2015 Journal Article Smith, D., Henderson, D. & Terza, L. M. Modelling cyclone loss mitigation using claims analysis. (2015).
2015 Report Smith, D., Henderson, D., Ginger, J. & Wehner, M. Improving the resilience of existing housing to severe wind events: Annual project report 2014-2015. (Bushfire and Natural Hazards CRC, 2015).
2015 Report Henderson, D. Improving the Resilience of Existing Housing to Severe Wind Events Annual Report 2014. (2015).
2014 Journal Article Smith, D., Masters, F. J. & Gurley, K. R. An historical perspective on the wind resistance of clay and concrete roofing tiles. RCI Interface 32, 22-35 (2014).
Date Title Download Key Topics
20 Mar 2014 Resilience and Mitigation through Hardening the Built Environment PDF icon 16.21 MB (16.21 MB) coastal, cyclone, earthquake
13 Feb 2015 Improving the Resilience of Existing Housing to Severe Wind Events PDF icon 1.8 MB (1.8 MB) cyclone, engineering, mitigation
01 Apr 2015 Fire Australia Autumn 2015 PDF icon 8.64 MB (8.64 MB) fire, modelling, severe weather
19 Jun 2015 TC Marcia Rapid Assessment Report PDF icon 1.07 MB (1.07 MB) cyclone, engineering
19 Jun 2015 TC Nathan Rapid Assessment Report PDF icon 2.42 MB (2.42 MB) cyclone, engineering
19 Jun 2015 Tropical Cyclone Olwyn Rapid Damage Assessment PDF icon 790.15 KB (790.15 KB) cyclone, engineering
04 May 2016 Hardening buildings and infrastructure - cluster overview File 0 bytes (0 bytes) engineering, infrastructure, multi-hazard
30 Aug 2016 Cyclone Resilience through academic and industry partnership - Daniel Smith PDF icon 2.76 MB (2.76 MB) cyclone, engineering, severe weather
01 Sep 2016 Are our homes and buildings failing us? - David Henderson PDF icon 8.26 MB (8.26 MB) cyclone, engineering, severe weather
24 Oct 2016 Improving the resilience of existing housing to severe wind events PDF icon 6.56 MB (6.56 MB) cyclone, engineering, resilience
30 Jan 2017 Strengthening infrastructure for natural hazard impacts PDF icon 358.94 KB (358.94 KB) earthquake, engineering, mitigation
27 Apr 2017 Builders - replacing roofing on houses File 0 bytes (0 bytes) cyclone, engineering, mitigation
27 Apr 2017 Owners - replacing roofs on houses File 0 bytes (0 bytes) cyclone, engineering, mitigation
27 Apr 2017 Builders - re-roofing after storm damage File 0 bytes (0 bytes) cyclone, engineering, mitigation
27 Apr 2017 Owners - re-roofing after storm damage File 0 bytes (0 bytes) cyclone, engineering, mitigation
07 Jul 2017 Towards a safer built environment PDF icon 8.24 MB (8.24 MB) engineering, infrastructure, multi-hazard
31 Aug 2017 Fire Australia Issue Three 2017 PDF icon 5.22 MB (5.22 MB) child-centred, prescribed burning, severe weather
07 Sep 2017 Analysis of rapid damage assessment data following severe windstorm events PDF icon 3.31 MB (3.31 MB) cyclone, engineering, severe weather
31 Oct 2017 Built environment cluster PDF icon 713.22 KB (713.22 KB) engineering, mitigation, multi-hazard
01 Jun 2018 Fire Australia Issue Two 2018 PDF icon 6.73 MB (6.73 MB) communities, decision making, emergency management
19 Sep 2018 Large damage bills (to buildings) from cyclones can be reduced by small actions PDF icon 6.95 MB (6.95 MB) cyclone, resilience
23 Nov 2018 Improving the resilience of existing housing to severe wind events PDF icon 3.32 MB (3.32 MB) cyclone, modelling, resilience
05 Dec 2018 Fire Australia Issue Four 2018 PDF icon 4.99 MB (4.99 MB) cyclone
30 Jul 2019 Improving the Resilience of Existing Housing to Severe Wind Events PDF icon 3.37 MB (3.37 MB) cyclone, modelling, resilience
27 Aug 2019 Improving the Resilience of Existing Housing to Severe Wind Events PDF icon 3.51 MB (3.51 MB) severe weather
25 Nov 2020 Strength in the face of high winds cyclone, engineering, mitigation
17 May 2021 Fire Australia Issue Two 2021 PDF icon 11.74 MB (11.74 MB) capability, emergency management, Northern Australia
Improving the resilience of existing housing to severe wind events
25 Aug 2014
Typically, older houses do not offer the same level of performance and protection during windstorms as houses...
Improving the Resilience of Existing Housing to Severe Wind Events
18 Aug 2015
Many of us live in homes with vulnerabilities that contribute to community wind risk. This project aims to...
Daniel Smith Conference Poster 2016
12 Aug 2016
Many of us live in homes with vulnerabilities that contribute to community wind risk.
Mitchell Humphreys Conference Poster 2016
12 Aug 2016
Internal pressures can contribute to a large portion of the net wind load on a building.
Improving the resilience of existing housing to severe wind events
29 Jun 2017
This project aims to investigate windstorm risk mitigation by: (a) developing vulnerability models for...
Improving the resilience of existing housing to severe wind events
19 Sep 2018
This project aims to investigate and reduce damage from windstorms by developing vulnerability models for...
31 Aug 2020
Key findings: Certain house types can benefit from retrofitting for severe wind events