Substantial Damage Estimation (SDE) Workflow

A structure is determined to have Substantial Damage when the total repair costs amount to at least 50% of the structures pre-disaster market value and the structure is also in a Special Flood Hazard Area (SFHA)/ 100-year floodplain. Local floodplain management ordinances require communities participating in the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) to determine Substantial Damages. Once a local building official or floodplain manager determines that a structure has Substantial Damage, the structure must be brought into compliance with local floodplain management regulations.

This workflow will walk you through the process of estimating Substantial Damage for residential and commercial properties. FEMA has a Substantial Damage Estimator (SDE) Tool, which helps communities more quickly determine Substantial Damages of residential and non-residential properties in an effort to begin reconstruction soon after a disaster, while also meeting the minimum NFIP requirements.

Using Crisis Track's SDE entry form and SDE document, you can easily import entries into FEMA's SDE Tool to create Substantial Damage Estimation assessments and calculate damages.

Creating an SDE Incident

1. On the Crisis Track home screen, select an  Existing Incident to add your SDE Task to, or create a New Incident

Assigning Structures to SDE Task and Creating SDE Entries on Console

2. Once inside of the Incident, create an SDE Task by selecting the  Tasks module → Add → New. Fill in the details using the definitions below.

  • Name: Name of the Task.
  • Type: Optional. The type of this task using your own terminology.
  • Status: "Request" initially. Other statuses are appropriate throughout the life of an incident.
  • Date: Start date of the Task.
  • Description: A description of the Task.
  • Special Instructions: Any instructions that may be helpful for the team that completes this task.
  • Assign: The team to which to assign this task.
  • Time Charge Category: Choose the FEMA time charge category for the work being performed for this task.
  • Limit Forms: Allows you to specify which forms will be available for this task. If this is left blank, then all forms will be available.

         Click  Save.

3. Select  Map. Select the Structures check box to turn on structures. Position the map to the desired area. In the Edit Task Area box, select the Freehand Polygon from the Draw Tool dropdown list. Draw a boundary around structures in the flood area to create your SDE Task Area.

4. To create SDE Entries, select  Assign Structures → Use Task Area. Change the form to SDE. Click Assign. Assigned structures will turn blue.

5.  Input damage information and add photos for the assigned structures.  *NOTE* The FEMA SDE Tool caps photo size limits at 3MBs per entry, which should allow 20 to 30 photos to fit per entry. If an entry has more than 30 photos, you can choose the photos you want to use once in the FEMA SDE Tool.

a. To edit structure information while in the task map view, select an SDE structure and click  Edit

b. To see a list of assigned SDE structures, select the  Entries tab and edit the damage information for the entries. 

c. Once an entry has been updated, save its  Status as Complete.

Creating SDE Entries on Mobile App

Follow the steps below for when you are in the field and need to add a new SDE structure via the Crisis Track mobile app.

1. After logging in your account, select your SDE IncidentCollect Data → your Team →  your TaskStart (if you're the Team Lead), otherwise select View.

2. On the Entries screen, select the + button in the top right hand corner → SDE

3. On the SDE form, select Locate to bring up the 10 closest addresses. Select the address you want to use and update the information for the entry. Add Photos. Click Submit, review information, and select Save/Upload if you have a data or WiFi connection, or Save Locally to your device and information will be uploaded to Crisis Track servers once an internet connection is established.

Exporting SDE Entries from Crisis Track into FEMA SDE Tool

6. After SDE entries have been completed, go back to the Incident home screen and select  Documents → Add → SDE (FEMA P-784 Substantial Damage Estimator). Only SDE Entries that have been completed will appear here. Check the boxes of the assessments you would like to export into the FEMA SDE Tool and click Export. Download and extract the zip archive.

7.  Download and install FEMA SDE Tool Version 3.0 using instructions from the SDE Tool Installation Guide.

8. Open FEMA SDE Tool. 

            a. Under Reports, Imports/Exports, and Geofiles, select Import/Export Functions. You can also import SDE data by selecting Import/ExportImport SDE on the menu bar and skipping to step 8c.

  b. Select Import SDE Data.

  c.  Select Directory. Locate your SDE Exports file folder and click OK.

d. Select  Check All to select all properties and assessments. Only click Overwrite for assessments you are re-uploading.

e. Click Import. You will receive confirmation messages when data imports successfully and calculations run successfully.

 f. Back on the SDE Tool Main Menu, select View/Search All Records. → Filter, and your imported SDE assessments will now appear. If you need to further narrow your search results, you can use the optional search fields. 

g. Open an assessment and select View/Edit Assessment Info to make sure all property information, cost data and elemental percentages are correct.

 i. Select the Photos tab to choose a default image for the entry, which can help make it easier to differentiate the entries. The description box will populate a link to the image's location in Crisis Track. Update photo description as needed.

ii. Click Save. If any information is missing, the SDE Tool will alert you. Select Address Errors/Warnings to correct the information. Save Assessment.

h. Print a Report Summary or Detailed Report for the assessment.

i. Repeat Steps 8g-h for additional assessments.

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