The powerful earthquakes in Turkey and Syria on Monday morning are a sobering reminder of why we do what we do. I’m devastated to learn of the loss of life. So many people have been impacted, this event will certainly have wide ranging effects across the region.
As Structural Engineers, we can take actions to help communities stay safe during earthquakes and recover afterwards:
- Remind your friends, colleagues, and family to have an emergency plan and have earthquake kits at home, at work, and in the car. You can find Seven Steps to Earthquake Safety here: https://www.earthquakecountry.org/sevensteps/
- Participate in the Shake Out in October and practice “Drop, Cover, and Hold On.”
- Get trained as a Safety Assessment Evaluator. The Safety Assessment Program (SAP) utilizes volunteers and mutual aid resources to provide professional engineers, architects, and certified building inspectors to assist local governments in safety evaluation of their built environment in the aftermath of a disaster. https://www.caloes.ca.gov/office-of-the-director/operations/recovery-directorate/interagency-recovery-coordination/recovery-analytics-engineers-and-specialists/safety-assessment-program/
- Encourage clients to retrofit their properties, particularly vulnerable structures such as soft story or non-ductile concrete frames. While the City of LA has a mandatory ordinance that includes these building types, other municipalities do not.
Stay safe, be prepared, and remember our time together is precious.
Patti Harburg - Petrich, S.E.
SEAOSC President 2022-23