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Vibrating Victoria - Earthquakes in the Capital/Vancouver Island regions


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#41 Caramia

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Posted 28 September 2009 - 11:56 AM

I grew up there. It wasn't until much later in life I realized that the rule "don't put breakables on the front of the kitchen shelves" wasn't a normal household convention.
Nowadays most people die of a sort of creeping common sense, and discover when it is too late that the only things one never regrets are one's mistakes.
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#42 Baro

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Posted 28 September 2009 - 01:27 PM

My friend lived on a house on the bend of a curved road and every time a truck or bus went by the shaking was ridiculous. They complained to the city and finally the city told them that the curved road they live on didn't used to be curved, it went right through their house. The problem was they just built the house on top of the old road so all the vibrations just went straight through. Eventually the city dug up enough of the old road to disconnect their house from the rumbling and they're fine now.
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#43 Bingo

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Posted 14 October 2009 - 12:46 PM

It's out of our hands. If it falls down and it is necessary to replace it, the federal and provincial governments will cough up millions of dollars of disaster relief money, including funds to replace the Johnson Street Bridge.

#44 sebberry

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Posted 23 November 2009 - 02:12 PM

I can't find the news story, but I saw on Chek news that the earthquake scientists have discovered that the big fault line is actually about 100km closer to Victoria than previously thought.

Yay. Living in a condo, earthquakes seriously scare the **** out of me.

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#45 G-Man

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Posted 23 November 2009 - 03:12 PM

But is it not a wood frame condo? That is where you want to be.

#46 Mike K.

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Posted 23 November 2009 - 03:18 PM

In a wood frame, really?

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#47 aastra

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Posted 23 November 2009 - 04:03 PM

I thought we had conclusively established that short wood frame buildings would vibrate at a higher frequency than taller buildings and thus get the heck kicked out of them in a major earthquake? Has the thinking changed on that? Or do I misunderstand the science on this?

Edit: I oversimplify: http://mceer.buffalo...ectBuilding.asp

...and here: http://www2.scholast...cle.jsp?id=4888

The biggest danger to any building short or tall occurs when the frequency, or timing, of the building's natural vibrations matches the frequency of the quake's vibrations.


When a building that's already vibrating gets enough well-timed "pushes" from an earthquake, however, the building can go "over the top": the vibrations rip it apart. Tall buildings don't usually have this problem. For one thing, they are made of strong, flexible materials that can withstand shaking. For another, they are usually built on solid ground. Earthquake waves move rapidly through solid ground. Tall buildings vibrate slowly, so there is less chance that resonance will occur. Even though you might not feel safe in a swaying skyscraper during a quake, chances are you would be.

The tall buildings that collapsed during the Mexico City quake of 1985 were an exception. They were built on soft soils, through which quake waves move slowly. They literally fell victim to resonance because their slow vibrating frequency matched that of the ground.



#48 Bernard

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Posted 23 November 2009 - 04:34 PM

Much depends on the type of ground you are on and how the shaking is transmitted through to the building. You can see on the maps at this link what your neighbourhood rates at for earthquake hazard.

#49 VicHockeyFan

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Posted 23 November 2009 - 04:38 PM

If you have ever "rocked" a car out when it has been stuck in snow, you know the effectiveness of the right timing of the push. Same with an earthquake I suppose.

#50 sebberry

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Posted 23 November 2009 - 04:55 PM

According to those maps, it looks like I am in a safe part of town. Doesn't change the fact that the building shakes like a leaf when a bus goes by.

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#51 sebberry

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Posted 23 November 2009 - 06:59 PM

I don't think we have any structural engineers on here (or do we?) but I seriously wonder if it is a sign of a building about to collapse: my updtairs neighbors heavy walking and other thumping around can be felt down the walls and through my floor.

Now does that sound like a house of cards or a building that will sway and safely dissipate any earthquake vibrations?

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#52 victorian fan

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Posted 23 November 2009 - 07:24 PM

Wood is flexible and moves with the force of the earthquake.

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#53 G-Man

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Posted 23 November 2009 - 07:59 PM

^ Exactly. Wood frame flexs rather than breaks. This is good. What you don't want to be in is an old brick and mortar building.

#54 rjag

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Posted 23 November 2009 - 09:38 PM

I don't think we have any structural engineers on here (or do we?) but I seriously wonder if it is a sign of a building about to collapse: my updtairs neighbors heavy walking and other thumping around can be felt down the walls and through my floor.

Now does that sound like a house of cards or a building that will sway and safely dissipate any earthquake vibrations?


Sounds more like a lack of sound insulation than structural. The big tell is to find out when your place was built and out of what material and where on the seismic map it is. Anything pre 1970's especially concrete block construction is very vulnerable. Also how many folks here have a brick chimney? ever had it repointed? A very prudent thing is to consider placing some wood in the attic around where the chimney is so if it does start to collapse the bricks are less likely to come through the ceiling into the room below.

#55 sebberry

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Posted 23 November 2009 - 09:43 PM

Sounds more like a lack of sound insulation than structural. The big tell is to find out when your place was built and out of what material and where on the seismic map it is. Anything pre 1970's especially concrete block construction is very vulnerable. Also how many folks here have a brick chimney? ever had it repointed? A very prudent thing is to consider placing some wood in the attic around where the chimney is so if it does start to collapse the bricks are less likely to come through the ceiling into the room below.


Hmm.. definately piss poor sound insulation.. you don't want to know what goes on upstairs in the bedroom...

But it still shakes when they pound around.

Looks like poured concrete for the foundation, about 10ft or so tall around the parking garage with three stories of wood on top. I think I'm more worried about the concrete crumbling. Lots of larger stones visible in it.

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#56 gumgum

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Posted 23 November 2009 - 10:45 PM

Sounds more like a lack of sound insulation than structural. The big tell is to find out when your place was built and out of what material and where on the seismic map it is. Anything pre 1970's especially concrete block construction is very vulnerable. Also how many folks here have a brick chimney? ever had it repointed? A very prudent thing is to consider placing some wood in the attic around where the chimney is so if it does start to collapse the bricks are less likely to come through the ceiling into the room below.

I agree about the chimney thing. I'm going to have to do something around my chimney. I wonder if half inch plywood would do./?

But anything pre 70's being vulnerable? I don't know. I feel pretty safe in my 49'. It was pretty much built like a tank. I mean, this thing is an overbuild in today's standards.
Mind you, I am in a bad spot. Peat bog. Severe liquefaction zone.

I have yet decided where we should run if/ when the big one comes. But the fireplace, is definitely the last on my list.

#57 sebberry

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Posted 23 November 2009 - 10:54 PM

Isn't the big issue with the older houses something to do with the house not actually being properly secured to the foundation?

I've been in some of those older houses, really solid feeling construction, but if the thing slides off the foundation...

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#58 phx

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Posted 23 November 2009 - 11:13 PM

They don't build 'em like they used to... :o



#59 phx

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Posted 23 November 2009 - 11:17 PM

Isn't the big issue with the older houses something to do with the house not actually being properly secured to the foundation?


My house was retrofitted to anchor it to the foundation. The brackets and screws look a bit lightweight, so IDK if they will do the job or not.

#60 Rob Randall

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Posted 23 November 2009 - 11:22 PM

Phx, that chimney reminds me of Megan Dickie's sculpture on display last week at the Ministry of Casual Living on Haultain Street:

f0r5-0ngElk

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