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Earthquakes: Effects on Buildings and People in California and Japan

Damage caused in Japan There is a graphic example of an earthquake in Kobe, Japan. All utilities, railways, and other lifelines to the city suffered great damage. As far as residential and office buildings are concerned, there is a clear indication that the extent of damage sustained by buildings in Japan depends on when, and under what design code, they are designed. Older wooden residential houses in Kobe's less affluent district, Nogata-ku, appear to have sustained the most damage. Japans's Median Tectonic Zone is a zone of strike slip faults. Damage to transportation system can be very drastic, a lot of which is caused by liquification and induced ground deformation. Collapse of a 500 m segment of the Hanshin expressway that was constructed over seismic provisions is reminiscent of welded joints of steel frame buildings in California.

Damage caused in California Valley fever occured in Ventura county following the Northridge earthquake. This was caused by dust generated by landslides caused by the earthquake. Much destruction in SanFrancisco has been caused by fires and liquification. The San Andreas fault is one of the most active areas for earthquakes in California and has seen much damage.

The Road to Earthquake Safety Preparing buildings for earthquakes can be a tedious process. First of all, building components must be secured and a strong and flexible structure must be constructed. Estimating what earthquakes of what size are likely to occur can be done in different ways. Using communities to apply knowledge of building codes, retrofitting programs, hazard hunts, and neighborhood and emergency plans are several ways to do this. Standards are instituted through the establishment of Building Codes, which regulate the design and construction of buildings. Hazard maps (how building codes are drafted) are constructed by examining the frequency of shaking, the distance from the fault, the earthquake history of the region, and the expected shaking intensity.

Difference in Building Structures: wysiwyg://56/ When the ground shakes, buildings respond to the accelerations transmitted from the ground. The type and frequency of shaking depends on the structure. Tall buildings tend to amplify the motions of longer periods and also tend to shake longer. A rule to measure this is called the

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my first web page period of resonance-it is about equal to 0.1 times the number of stories in the structure.

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Where to Find Photographs of Earthquake Damage Smithsonian Photographs Online The Museum of the City of San Francisco- Bay Area Earthquake Damage The Geo Images Project-UC Berkeley Library of Congress American Memory


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