Last week on the morning of our nation’s birthday, most Southern Californians felt, and all heard, the news that a 6.4 magnitude earthquake occurred. The day after a 7.1 magnitude earthquake occurred along the same fault that was approximately 10 times stronger. Luckily, no fatalities or major injuries were reported as a direct result. However, power and communication systems were knocked out within parts of San Bernardino County, and some homes and buildings sustained significant damage.
We at FR as a first want to stress the importance of having an emergency plan with your families, friends, and neighbors should a disaster hit. With little to no warning of earthquakes, the harsh reality of loss could occur in a matter of seconds if not prepared.
As a follow-up, we also need and want to express the importance of due-diligence as it pertains to structural integrity of a building
. Many lenders are now starting to put greater emphasis on Seismic Risk Assessments and Probable Maximum Loss Reports for buildings that fall under certain criteria (as shown below). A Seismic Risk Assessment is a great tool to determine the maximum loss a building could sustain should a disaster occur given its specific construction characteristics. It is a real thing and harsh reminder we endured last week Thursday and Friday that can strike out of nowhere given that it has been nearly two decades since a significant earthquake has hit Southern California.
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Greg L. Gavasse, MSSE, P.E.
Fulcrum Resources Environmental