CDEMA Earthquake Readiness - Earthquake Damage Reduction
Earthquake Damage Reduction

There are many ways to reduce earthquake damage. 

  • Possible actions include:
    • Participating in certification and other programs offered to introduce improved construction techniques to the building industry.

    • Developing a hazard map with earthquake risk zones.

    • Using construction techniques that are seismic resistant.

    • Determining which sites are safe for construction through analysis of the soil type and geological structure.

    • Instituting incentives to remove unsafe buildings and buildings on unsafe sites or, more probably, to upgrade their level of safety.

    • Ensuring that future development is on safer sites and apply safer methods of construction through abiding by:

      • Land use controls (zoning).

      • Building Codes and standards and means of enforcing them.

      • Favourable taxation, loans, or subsidies to qualify buildings, methods and sites.

      • Land development incentives.

    • Reducing possible damage from secondary effects by:

      • Identifying potential landslide sites and restricting construction in those areas.

      • Installing devices that will keep breakages in electrical lines and gas mains from producing fires.

      • Verifying the capability of dams to resist earthquake forces, and upgrading as necessary.

    • A high percentage of losses in earthquakes is due to failure of non-structural elements such as ceilings, windows, doors, partitions, cupboard and shelves, external cladding, electrical and mechanical systems, and other components of buildings. Non-structural components comprise 60-80% of the cost of the building.

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An earthquake happens somewhere in the world once every 30 seconds.