Foundation, Concrete and Earthquake Engineering


During an earthquake, the collapse or partial collapse of buildings and falling parapets results most of the deaths, injuries, and property damage. In countries with large numbers of unreinforced masonry buildings and newer, but poorly constructed buildings a major earthquake can be expected to cause thousands of deaths.

Recent experience from different earthquakes provides us the following broad generalizations about the performance of various classes of buildings during major earthquakes.

1. Ductile steel and ductile reinforced concrete frame buildings - highly resistant to structural damage; may suffer some structural and nonstructural damage.

2. Vertical load-carrying steel and reinforced concrete frame buildings which use bracing members or shear walls to resist lateral forces - perform well but may suffer some structural as well as nonstructural damage.
3. Pre-engineered and other light steel and sheet metal buildings - usually perform extremely well.
4. Unreinforced masonry buildings of all types - highly vulnerable to damage and collapse.
5. Reinforced brick and concrete block masonry buildings - perform well but may suffer some structural as well as nonstructural damage.
6. Newer residential buildings of wood frame construction with wood or stucco siding usually behave well but may suffer damage.
7. Modern design open-type houses with large glass openings, split-level houses, and two-story houses or apartments with large garage openings in the first story are vulnerable to earthquake damage.
8. Older residential buildings constructed before the 1940s often perform poorly and suffer structural damage.
9. Mobilehomes - rarely cause loss of life but may be severely damaged by being knocked off their foundations unless adequately attached and restrained by their supports.

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