Monday, October 14, 2013

The Hazards Poised by Old Buildings in LA

More than 1,000 old concrete buildings in Los Angeles and hundreds more throughout the county may be at risk of collapsing in a major earthquake, according to a Times analysis. 
By the most conservative estimate, as many as 50 of these buildings in the city alone would be destroyed, exposing thousands to injury or death. 
... Despite their sturdy appearance, many older concrete buildings are vulnerable to the sideways movement of a major earthquake because they don't have enough steel reinforcing bars to hold columns in place. 
Los Angeles officials have known about the dangers for more than 40 years but have failed to force owners to make their properties safer. The city has even rejected calls to make a list of concrete buildings. 
In the absence of city action, university scientists compiled the first comprehensive inventory of potentially dangerous concrete buildings in Los Angeles. 
The scientists, however, have declined to make the information public. They said they are willing to share it with L.A. officials, but only if the city requests a copy. The city has not done so, the scientists said.
... Seismologists and engineers say time is running out to fix dangerous concrete buildings. 
If the Big One hits the San Andreas fault — and scientists say it's long overdue — seismic waves would cascade into downtown Los Angeles at a magnitude not felt since 1857. Another alarming scenario is a huge temblor striking directly underneath Hollywood or the Westside. More than 300 faults crisscross the L.A. Basin.
Read the whole thing.

No comments:

Post a Comment

The Docent's Memo (8/15/2022)

  VIDEO: " The M1D Sniper Rifle, the most lethal version of the M1 Garand "--Garand Thumb (22 min.) This was one of the later snip...