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Earthquake Damage

Earthquakes can affect both structural and non-structural building components. For structural components, evaluating seismic damage requires knowledge of the lateral load path and general performance characteristics of structural components and building systems such as wood, structural steel, light gauge steel, reinforced concrete, post-tensioned concrete, and reinforced masonry. Structural response may also be affected by the performance of non-building components such as finishes. Damage to non-structural components such as ceiling systems, mechanical, electrical and plumbing systems is common even in weak to moderate earthquakes. 

YAES engineers have experience evaluating earthquake-damaged buildings and structures in numerous major earthquakes over the past 40 years including: 2019 Ridgecrest (California), 2018 Anchorage (Alaska), 2016 Ecuador, 2014 South Napa (California), 2011 Christchurch sequence (New Zealand), 2011 Mineral (Virginia), 2011 Tohoku (Japan), 2010 Eureka (California), 2010 Haiti, 2006 Kiholo Bay (Hawaii), 2001 Nisqually (Washington), 1994 Northridge (California), 1989 Loma Prieta (California). Our engineers have also investigated building and non-building damage related to human activity-induced earthquakes including a 5.0 Mw earthquake in 2016 in Cushing, Oklahoma.

YAES has particular experience in distinguishing between earthquake and non-earthquake related damage based on our decades of experience analyzing structural failures of all types.

YAES services include:

  • Damage Assessment
  • Structural Analysis
  • Finite Element Modeling
  • Development of Repair Design Drawings¬†
  • Evaluation of Local and National Building Code Requirements for Repairs