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[SEAOC] Single jolts like an EQ, but not EQ!!!!!

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I am talking about a 5-story office building in the S.F. Valley, designed and
constructed in the early/mid sixties. Steel frames in both directions (with
welded cover plates), grade beams at the base, pile foundation. Floor framing
is lt.wt. concrete fill over plywood on wood joists spanning between steel
beams.
A few  tenants (at one side of the building) are complaining about random
"jolts" that started about a year ago and are occuring increasingly.
Naturally the owner would like to find out what is going on (and so do I !)
By the way, the one and only side of the building where the complaints are
coming from has continuous brick spandrels which are supported top, btm. &
mid-height at every column (about 21 ft o/c).
One of my guesses is that there might be some "locked-up stresses" which are
being "released". (Spandrel connections and/or welded connections).
There appear to be no visual deformations and/or cracks. The building was
"inspected" after the EQ by a structural engineer, but no beam/col or
spandrel/col connections were exposed or inspected.
I thank your for the upcoming comments and suggestions.
Antonio S. Luisoni
Consulting S. E.



 

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