Protect Your Home With a Basic Seismic Retrofit
Strengthening a home in earthquake country means anchoring it to its foundation and adding site-built shear walls.
Synopsis: For homeowners living in seismic zones, there’s no knowing for sure when the next big one will hit. According to structural engineer Thor Matteson, though, you can protect your house with a basic seismic retrofit. This type of work won’t make a house earthquakeproof, but it will help to minimize damage. Some of the basic steps include connecting the mudsill’s to the house’s foundation; securing the floors to the tops of the walls; and building shear walls. This article includes a sidebar on ineffective retrofit methods.
Geologists estimate that the Hayward Fault that runs through the East Bay of San Francisco is due to give way at any moment. When it hits, the earthquake is projected to cause significant loss of life, to cause nearly $165 billion worth of damage, and to leave hundreds of thousands homeless. The last major Hayward Fault earthquake was in…