What We Can Learn From Massive Morocco Earthquake
The 6.8 earthquake that devastated Marrakech, Morocco earlier this month should serve as a major earthquake warning for California.
To-date, there have been 2,900 deaths and 5,500 injuries, while countless people remain missing. The majority of the buildings that were severely damaged or destroyed in the quake were those constructed from brick or unreinforced masonry.
While these types of buildings are used in hot areas to keep cool, they are extremely vulnerable to earthquake damage and destruction because they lack the necessary reinforcements to withstand the shaking.
In fact, many of these same types of buildings makeup California’s older residential and commercial infrastructure.
“After the 1971 San Fernando earthquake killed 64 people and damaged hundreds of buildings, codes changed for buildings to require more steel and wood (which can bend and give as the earth moves underneath) along with other earthquake-safe building approaches. But so many buildings are grandfathered in to older codes,” reports the L.A. Times.
In fact, L.A. County owns 33 of these buildings – which makeup administrative office areas, the coroner’s office, and public health department headquarters.
And hundreds of similar buildings sit atop the San Andreas, San Jacinto and Cucamonga fault lines, having never been retrofitted for earthquakes.
While Los Angeles County, and other neighboring areas, have made progress in mandating earthquake retrofits for vulnerable structures, it’s not happening fast. Many of these mandates give building owners 10 years to retrofit these structures, with some areas (like West Hollywood) offering owners a 20 year timeline.
While we can’t control the retrofitting process of commercial buildings in Southern California, there are many private buildings and residencies that need earthquake retrofitting as well.
Retrofitting homes, apartment structures, and commercial buildings are key to keeping California resilient in the face of earthquakes – and cost far less than repairing damage from a large seismic event.
If you think your home may be in need of earthquake retrofitting, foundation repair, or foundation replacement, contact Julian Construction today and we will send one of our foundation specialists out to conduct a free, thorough inspection with a quote for repair.
We have extensive experience serving our Los Angeles community and nearby regions. In fact, Julian Construction has inspected over 30,000 structures in the area! Give us a call at (323) 733-3377 to schedule your free inspection or complete the inspection request form on our website.