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FW: Hundreds Of Calif. Hospitals At Risk Of Collapse

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It seems SPC-1 hospitals have a higher standard for what is considered hazardous. They are probably safer, to be in, than some commercial and residential buildings deemed as not dangerous.

Using a new type of seismic risk analysis software called HAZUS, some SPC-1 buildings have or will be reclassified as SPC-2 buildings if they face a 10 percent or less chance of complete damage. They will not have to meet the 2008/2013 deadlines, but they will still have to meet the 2030 deadline. This is a more accurate seismic risk approach. The Sacramento area heading towards the foot hills has a greatly reduce seismic risk. Santa Barbara is now increased to one of the worst areas.

Unreinforced Masonry Buildings (UMB) seismically retrofitted are considered occupiable or not dangerous. The strength of most SPC-1 hospitals are probably far more resilient than that of the reinforced UMB. It seems that SPC-1 hospitals are considered hazardous more because of their need to save not just the lives in the building but to help those needing emergency care from near by in an aftermath.

The minimal reinforcement guidelines for UMB structures set a threshold of what was a seismic hazard which seemed to be about a seismic event that would occur every 100 to 150 years. New commercial and residential designs meet the 500 year criteria. Most likely the SPC-1 criteria is not even close to the lower limit of a 150 year return period.

I too would like to hear just what seismic event are they referring to for a complete collapse of a SPC-1 Hospital.

David Merrick, SE
Sacramento



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