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Re: Disaster dilemma

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Who is responsible for evaluating the potential for collapse or other life
safety hazards, state OES volunteers or engineers retained by others
(owners, local public agencies, etc.)?  If initial evaluations are
performed during the rapid response phase immediately following an
earthquake, should there be further and more intense evaluations required?

Hazard abatement procedures between different public agencies are not very
standardized if they exist at all.  This seems to be especially true for
residential structures.  Perhaps the state could renew its efforts to
create some standards.  This effort was started and then discontinued after
the Loma Prieta earthquake.

Perhaps the state in conjunction with SEAOC could create educational
information or seminars to aid those doing the reviews.  This could be
based on the many observations made by the multitude of engineers who have
reviewed earthquake damaged residential structures.  There is the reality
that consensus might be difficult.

Some of the questions that should be included are:
	What is the probability of an after shock of a magnitude that would
require 	the damaged structure to perform beyond its remaining capacity?
 	What constitutes collapse or life safety hazards?
	Is it possible to save the structure?
	Are the natural elements more of a hazard than the structure?

I'm sure there are many more questions that could be added to this list. 
It seems you have a large problem on your hands.  Good luck.

> From: Richard_Ranous/OES(--nospam--at)
> To: seaoc(--nospam--at)
> Subject: Disaster dilema
> Date: Friday, January 16, 1998 2:34 PM
> I would like to solicit some comments regarding re-occupying homes and
> apartment buildings following a major earthquake.
> Scenario:  It is anticipated that a major event in the bay area on either
> the San Andreas or Hayward fault could result in approximately 154,000
> displaced persons.  How do you house (short- and long-term) these people?
> Proposed solution:  Some bay area government agencies propose that people
> be allowed to re-occupy (full time) damaged homes and apartments as long
> they do not pose a collapse hazard or other life safety hazard.  This
> occupancy would take place even if all utilities are turned off and
> sanitation is out.
> From the safety assessment program standpoint is this a viable solution?
> What about fire hazards?  Would this approach result in faster repairs of
> damaged structures or slower repairs?  Any comments would be welcome>