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Keaton Johns

Casey Webb
GEO 1035
9/27/17
DC Fault Hazard Reports

Metropolis
Metropolis is filled with various potential problems in the event of an earthquake because
of the variety of the age of infrastructure. The Business District of Metropolis is the most recent
addition of the city with most of the buildings being built within the last 20 years; these buildings
are the most reinforced and up to code. The houses, skyscrapers, and historic landmarks of the
city were built over 50 years ago, and are not as up to code. In the event of a major earthquake,
the buildings in the Business District will be able to withstand the force of the earthquake much
better than in the other places.
The main additional hazard that will cause major damage to the city is liquefaction. The
foundation of the city is on old swamps and marsh lands, which is a very unstable substrate. In
the event of an earthquake, the water mixed within the foundation will rise to the top because of
the intense shaking. When the water rises to the top, the ground turns into a makeshift
quicksand, and the buildings begin to sink into the ground. All buildings will be heavily
affected by liquefaction, no matter how reinforced they are.
Another infrastructural disaster that may occur concerns the bridges that run over a river
connecting the two sections of the city. The bridges are at high risk of collapsing due to intense
shaking.
In order to prevent major disaster in the event of an earthquake of a magnitude 6.3 or
higher, there must be major reinforcing done on the homes and other structures that are more
than 50 years old. There must be certain places in the city that are designated safe spots for
medics and first responders to take injured people where they are at minimal risk of further harm.
There should be at least two spaces on the southeast side of Metropolis, and at least one on the
northeast side.
Smallville
Smallville is a diverse city filled with both rural and urban aspects. It seems to be a very
flat landscape, and there is a river which separates the two main parts of the city. The residencies
are on the west side of the city/river, and the Business District is on the east side of the city/river.
The foundation is 400 million year old limestones and sandstones (an incredibly stable
foundation), so the amount of seismic energy transmitted from an earthquake will be smaller
than with a more unstable foundation.
However, unconsolidated sediments are along the river channel. This is a much more
unstable foundation. This could prove very dangerous for any residencies and businesses that are
very near the river as the threat of liquefaction poses itself. The bridges that connect the west and
east sides of the city will most likely collapse due to the liquefaction and huge amounts of
seismic energy transmitted from its unstable base.
The main concern to worry about in the event of an earthquake deals with infrastructure.
Almost all of the buildings in Smallville were built before the 1970s, meaning that they are not
as reinforced as they should be.
In order to minimize damage in the event of a major earthquake, the main focus should
be on reinforcing all the buildings and bridges so that they are up to code and able to withstand
the intense shaking. There should be at least three designated safe spaces in the city: one in the
rural section of the west side, one in the urban section of the west side, and one in the center of
the Business District.
Gotham
Gotham City is one of the cities with the most diverse amount of challenges and potential
hazards concerning earthquakes. There is a varying amount of the ages of buildings; the
commercial and government buildings in the Business District (which lies in the center of the
city along a small river channel) were all built within the last 20 years, and the residential areas
have houses that were built from the 1970s to now. No matter what, these buildings are recent
enough that they have the proper reinforcement to withstand the shaking of a major earthquake.
However, the city was built upon loosely compacted sediments which is an unstable
foundation; some of the suburbs were even built upon reclaimed land due to the close proximity
to the coast. The threat of liquefaction is very prevalent in the city of Gotham, but at least, the
buildings are strong enough to stay intact. Bridges connecting the north and south parts of the
city that run over the river will definitely be impacted by a major earthquake.
At least three safe spaces should be determined around the city. They should be able to
form close to an equilateral triangle, and can cover the majority of the city. One should be
centralized in the middle of the southern portion of the city, one should be in the northwestern
part of the map along Highway 10, and the third should be in the northeastern part of the city on
the other side of the river.
Star City
Star City seems to be in the least amount of harms way along the DC Fault.
There have been no records of major earthquakes along the Star City segment of the DC Fault,
but that does not mean there couldnt be one.
The biggest threats to Star City would be the dangers of landslides and water damage.
The foundation is mainly built upon volcanic deposits and debris because the city lies east of a
tall mountain range. Should a major earthquake occur, the amount of loose rocks and debris that
come from the mountains could be devastating. The city is also flanked by two major rivers: one
to the west flowing south, and one huge river to the north flowing east. The amount of shaking
would not necessarily cause a tsunami, but some of the water in the river could be majorly
displaced into the city.
The buildings in the Business District have been built within the last 40 years, so there is
some understanding of reinforcement in the design of the buildings. However, while many of the
residences have been built in the last 20 years, some houses date back to 70 years at the most.
These particular houses need to be reinforced immediately to prevent any further potential
damage.
The safe spaces in the city have to be more inland to be out of harm's way from the
landslides and water displacement. They could lie along the center of the city, in the northern,
true central, and southern parts of the city for maximum coverage.